More negative Veterans Administration news came to light over the weekend. VA news sources say the number of military veterans on waiting lists for health care of a month or longer is 50 percent higher than it was a year ago. Yes, you read that right. There are more military veterans on waiting lists at the VA now than when the Veterans Health Administration scandal of 2014 brought about sweeping changes at the Department of Veterans Affairs. We’ve got a Fox News video detailing the ongoing issues at the VA in our post below.
The continuing issue of long waiting lists for veterans seeking health care isn’t the only major problem the Department of Veterans Affairs is facing. The department is also dealing with a $2.7 billion budget shortfall. “Something has to give,” the department’s deputy secretary, Sloan D. Gibson, said in an interview. “We can’t leave this as the status quo. We are not meeting the needs of veterans, and veterans are signaling that to us by coming in for additional care, and we can’t deliver it as timely as we want to.”
This latest VA news comes on the heels of Colorado Congressman Mike Coffman suggesting the Department of Veteran Affairs should also run ISIS because they’re so incompetent and would presumably run the terrorist group into the ground.
More Veterans Receiving Health Care Despite Long Waiting Lists at VA?
Veterans Administration officials acknowledge the problem with long waits for health care, but say that is only part of the big picture. These officials also say that more military veterans are seeing doctors and receiving needed health care in 2015.
According to the New York Times, who broke this latest Veterans Health Administration News, “Since the waiting-list scandal broke last year, the department has broadly expanded access to care. Its doctors and nurses have handled 2.7 million more appointments than in any previous year, while authorizing 900,000 additional patients to see outside physicians. In all, agency officials say, they have increased capacity by more than 7 million patient visits per year — double what they originally thought they needed to fix shortcomings.”
The problem, according to VA officials, is that they did not expect see such a rise in demand from veterans for access to health care. That growing need, which is up one-fifth from the previous year at many veterans hospitals, is overtaxing physicians and the Veterans Health Administration.
Officials at the Department of Veterans Affairs Agency plan to seek approval from Congress to shift money into programs running short of cash. They expect this request to receive major pushback from Republican lawmakers.