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Why does it always take a highly-public, media-driven feeding frenzy and catastrophe like the Veteran’s Administration’s “waiting list” story to get our elected officials in Washington, D.C., off the dime to do what they should have been doing all along? Serious problems within the VA medical system are nothing new. It’s been building up for some time.
Sen. Tom Udall, in his sixth year as a U.S. senator, is not newly advised to these problems, regardless of what his public relations spin says. He and his staff had to have known, in detail, the difficulties faced by many veterans seeking health care, but it took a national exposure of a systemic tragedy to get them to at least appear fully engaged.
That’s shameful incompetence. Just as much as the senior administrators who are guilty of creating this debacle.
Not only is the loss of life and the suffering among our veterans a true American tragedy, but add to that the insult and lynch-mob type mentality that is now being leveled full-force at the system and is sadly catching the men and women who provide care to our veterans at the VA, in the crossfire as well.
The VA medical system is home to more than 1,700 sites of care across the country. Nearly 9 million veterans are served by that system every year.
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