Jacksonville, FL - For the first time, we’re getting a better idea of the impact that delays in treatment and diagnosis by VA Hospitals had on the First Coast.
The Department of Veteran Affairs has released a detailed look at nationwide fatalities which resulted from delayed consults, tying the problem to 23 deaths nationwide. We’ve now learned four patients in North Florida/South Georgia system were affected by these delays, and two subsequently died.
“How could this happen in our country in the 21st century,” says Congressman Ted Yoho.
Yoho says it’s not unheard of for an infrastructure so widespread and tied in to bureaucracy- there are 1,700 VA facilities nationwide- to experience delays, but there need to be consequences for problems this severe. He says lawmakers are currently considering what kind of budget the VA should get, while looking at possible penalties like salary cuts for administrators who don’t perform.
“We’re going after where it hurts in order to get this down,” Yoho says.
The local VA system tells us they have already made some adjustments, which include increased staffing and more oversight on veteran care even outside of affiliated clinics.