fbpx

Another Shameful Issue at VA Hospitals

Old and young soldiersVeterans Affairs officials aren't saying how 24,000 veterans were diagnosed with traumatic brain injury by unqualified VA physicians, but they told Congress they were working to resolve related disability claims problems.

Dave McLenachen, deputy undersecretary for disability assistance at the Veterans Benefits Administration, told a House Veterans' Affairs panel that he couldn’t "find a reason” why the exams were conducted in violation of VA policy at a number of VA facilities.  “I don’t know if it was a lack of capacity, whether that was an issue at the particular time, or to the extent whether there were enough of those specific specialists available at the time. I don't know the answer to that question," McLenachen said.

The investigation by the local Minneapolis TV station found that only one of the 21 medical professionals who conducted initial TBI exams at the Minneapolis VA was a qualified specialist—which is a physiatrist, psychiatrist, neurosurgeon or neurologist.  More than 327,000 troops were diagnosed with a brain injury from 2000 to 2015. Roughly 80% of those diagnoses were for mild TBI—or a concussion. About 170,000 veterans with TBI filed disability compensation claims. Approximately 75,000 have been approved.

Members of Congress expressed concern over the disparities—some of which can't be explained by the VA's failure to use specialists to diagnose veterans.  The committee staff has been attempting “to get to the bottom of what happened and who is responsible,” remarked chairman Rep. Ralph Abraham, R-LA. However, “after four separate briefings, the answers are not clear," he said.

"The only issue that is clear to me is that the Veterans Benefits Administration and Veterans Health Administration created a royal mess by not communicating with each other…and that senior VA employees once again failed to hold subordinates accountable,” Abraham commented.

Reference: Military Times (July 14, 2016) “VA doubling back to resolve TBI claims denials”

Like this article?

Share on facebook
Share on Facebook
Share on twitter
Share on Twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on Linkdin
Share on pinterest
Share on Pinterest

Leave a comment

LIKE THIS POST?

We have a LOT more where that came from!

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

Call Now ButtonCall Us Now https://jsfiddle.net/7h5246b8/

Request a free consultation

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Coronavirus/Covid-19
Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.