Showing posts with label Office of Inspector General. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Office of Inspector General. Show all posts

Thursday, April 30, 2020

VA Electronic health records plan massive failure continues

VA's $16 Billion Electronic Health Records Modernization Plan Is Failing, IG Says
By Richard Sisk
April 28, 2020
"For 10 years we've heard the same assurances that the electronic health records problem will be solved. It's incredible that we can't get this fixed." Rep. Hal Rogers, Kentucky

Claims piled up at the VA Regional Office in Winston-Salem, N.C. (VA Office of Inspector General)

A $16 billion effort to give veterans lifetime electronic health records that meshed with the Pentagon's has been marked by repeated delays and oversight failures that could have put patients at risk, according to reports from the VA Inspector General.

The IG reports released Monday detailed confusion in the overall implementation of the plan and failures to train staff and put in place adequate equipment for the pilot program, such as new laptops.

The first IG report, titled "Deficiencies in Infrastructure Readiness for Deploying VA's New Electronic Health Record [EHR] System," looked at how the Department of Veterans Affairs went about implementing the initial $10 billion, 10-year contract with Cerner Corp. of Kansas.

The VA now estimates that the contract, awarded in May 2018 by then-Acting VA Secretary Robert Wilkie without competitive bidding, will now cost at least another $6 billion for management and equipment.

The second report focused on delays and failures in the pilot program, even after it was scaled back from three test sites to one at the Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center (VAMC) in Spokane, Washington.
read it here

Just some background on the problem since it was after all these reports the spending spree started...and kept going,

VA, more promises, more waiting on fix to come
VA claim backlog at 816,211 but IT cut back WFT
8,763 vets died waiting for benefits
VA 400,000 claim backlog causes search for tech savvy workers
Hundreds of Veterans Claims were in the shredding bins at VA Detroit office
VFW reports 4 VA offices involved in document shredding

VA Claim backlog hit 915,000 on May 4, 2009

Friday, April 3, 2020

FBI and the Department of Veterans Affairs IG agents arrested ex-doctor for sexual assault on veteran patient

Former Veterans Affairs doctor in W.Va. accused of incapacitating, molesting patient

By WHSV newsroom
Apr 02, 2020

BECKLEY, W.Va. (WHSV) — A doctor who formerly worked at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Beckley, West Virginia, has been charged with depriving a veteran of his civil rights under the color of law.
Dr. Jonathan Yates, 51, was arrested on Thursday at his home by Special Agents of the FBI and the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General, with the assistance of the Bluefield, Virginia Police Department.

That's according to the Department of Justice.

Federal prosecutors say the charge stems from an incident that happened while Dr. Yates was working at the VA in February 2019.

According to a criminal complaint, Yates sexually molested a patient during an exam.

The complaint says Yates also caused the veteran he was examining severe pain and numbness and temporarily incapacitated him by cracking the patient's neck after the patient explicitly requested him not to do so.

The complaint says while the patient was incapacitated, Yates sexually molested him again.
read it here

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Office of the Inspector General VA review shows only some unprepared for COVID-19

The Inspector General checked on VA's coronavirus response. Here's what it found.

Connecting Vets
MARCH 26, 2020

A watchdog agency checked in on the Department of Veterans Affairs' response to COVID-19, including screening processes and pandemic readiness, and they found some areas lacking.
Within two days of the World Health Organization declaring the coronavirus spread a pandemic, the Veterans Health Administration, which cares for about 9 million veterans, began screening processes to protect against infection.

VA also began preparing for its fourth mission -- to serve as a last line of defense for Americans, not just veterans, during health crises.

About a week after VA began screening for the virus, Office of the Inspector General (OIG) investigators launched an inquiry to evaluate how VA was performing, including unannounced visits to hospitals, clinics and nursing homes -- while working to ensure those visits wouldn't put veterans or staff at risk.
At the 58 medical centers OIG investigators visited, they found:

About 71 percent had adequate screening processes in place, while about 28 percent had room for improvement and one -- the Southern Arizona VA Healthcare System -- had inadequate screening for potential infection because staff was not asking all of the required screening questions.

At the 121 community outpatient clinics OIG investigators visited, they found:

121 (97 percent) had screening in place, though four did not have any screening and visitors were asked no COVID-19 questions. At the 54 VA nursing homes investigators visited after VA announced a no-visitors policy, they found:

Nine nursing homes were still allowing visitors.

Almost all of the 237 medical facilities investigators visited were collecting COVID-19 specimens for testing, but none of those facilities could process them on site. Some referred those who needed testing to county or state health departments.
read it here

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Veterans Dying "Waiting" Should Be Required Reading

If you read about veterans dying for care that has flooded emails and social media, here is what the Inspector General found.
Report No. 15-00408-204
Healthcare Inspection
Alleged Patient Deaths and Management Deficiencies in Home Based Primary Care
Beckley VA Medical Center
Beckley, West Virginia
May 8, 2017
We substantiated that from 2007 through 2012, 25 of 40 patients died while awaiting admission to HBPC. However, we did not find that these patient deaths were associated with a delay in admission to HBPC as the patients continued to receive care from their health care providers prior to their deaths. We found that from 2008 through July 2012, HBPC staff kept an unapproved wait list in violation of Veterans Health Administration policy.

We did not substantiate HBPC patient scheduling, wait times, and backlogs were mismanaged. We found that, other than the wait list issue cited above, HBPC program managers substantially complied with VHA and facility policies. We substantiated that an HBPC provider changed a patient’s diagnosis by adding a diabetes diagnosis to the patient’s problem list. However, we could not determine that the change was made to obtain prosthetic shoes to the patient.

We did not substantiate HBPC providers inappropriately prescribed antibiotics.

We did not substantiate that providers overprescribed opioids or changed patients’ diagnoses in order to prescribe opioids.
read more here

Just like the suicide report, if these veterans really matter to you, then take the time to actually read the reports instead of just passing on headlines.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

VA IG "A Joke" to Whistleblower

Whistleblowers: VA inspector general a 'joke' 
Associated Press
Published: September 22, 2015
Shea Wilkes of Shreveport, La., a licensed clinical social worker at the Overton Brooks VA Medical Center, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing: "Improving VA Accountability: Examining First-Hand Accounts of Department of Veterans Affairs Whistleblowers." JACQUELYN MARTIN/AP
WASHINGTON — The Department of Veterans Affairs continues to retaliate against whistleblowers despite repeated pledges to stop punishing those who speak up, a group of employees said Tuesday. One called the department's office of inspector general a "joke."

VA whistleblowers from across the country told a Senate committee that the department has failed to hold supervisors accountable more than a year after a scandal that broke over chronic delays for veterans seeking medical care and falsified records covering up the waits.

Shea Wilkes, a mental health social worker at the Shreveport, Louisiana, VA hospital, said agency leaders are "more interested in perpetuating their own careers than caring for our veterans."

Wilkes, who helped organize a group known as "VA Truth Tellers," said "years of cronyism and lack of accountability have allowed at least two generations of poor, incompetent leaders to plant themselves within the system," harming medical treatment for veterans. The informal watchdog group includes more than 40 whistleblowers from VA facilities in a dozen states.

"Until we are able to protect whistleblowers and potential whistleblowers, the true depth of the corruption within the VA will not be known," Wilkes said, calling the VA's office of inspector general a "joke." The office has not had a permanent leader since December 2013.
read more here

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Veterans Administration Workers Sing 'Beat It'

Veterans Administration Workers Sing 'Beat It' In Latest Government Conference Embarrassment
Michael McAuliff
Posted: 08/24/2012

WASHINGTON -- The latest government conference scandal involving the Department of Veterans Affairs got more embarrassing Friday when a video surfaced of human resources workers delivering a tin-eared rendition of Michael Jackson's "Beat It."

House committees had already been investigating a pair of VA conferences that took place last July and August in Orlando and cost some $5 million, and earlier this week released a clip parodying General Patton.

So far, the office of Inspector General George Opfer has not found a strong case for Issa's claim.

"A series of interviews have uncovered questionable activities and we have notified both the Secretary and Congress of these issues," said a statement released by the IG's office. "We continue to review documents and conduct interviews. To date, all indications are that the conferences were for legitimate training purposes."
read more here