REP. SCOTT DESJARLAIS VOTES TO EASE VA HIRING, FIRING, IMPROVE VET HEALTH CARE MURFREESBORO, NASHVILLE HOSPITALS MOST IN NEED OF HELP
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The VA Accountability First Act of 2017 would streamline disciplinary procedures at the Veterans Administration, where federal employees collected performance bonuses, while patients died on secret waiting lists, a CNN investigation showed.
Yesterday, Congressman Scott DesJarlais, M.D., voted for the bill and another to protect veterans’ Second Amendment rights. Today, the Tennessee representative, a licensed physician and member of the GOP Doctors Caucus, voted to improve hiring and training at VA facilities.
“During my listening tour across the Fourth District, many veterans spoke to me about federal health care’s broken promises,” said Rep. DesJarlais (TN-04). “Tennessee heroes who put their lives on the line deserve to be at the front of the line for the best care available. Unfortunately, standards at the VA fall short.”
“Too often, an antiquated bureaucracy interferes with good employees who simply want to do their jobs .”
Today’s legislation would encourage recruitment, training and promotions for the most qualified medical professionals and managers to address a dearth of skilled personnel at VA hospitals. Locations in Murfreesboro and Nashville are most in need of help, according to VA quality rankings.
According to CNN, approximately 300,000 vets died while waiting for appointments. A congressional investigation directly linked 1,000 deaths to negligence and mismanagement. Since the scandal, wait times at VA hospitals have grown, despite bipartisan legislation to hire more doctors, build more hospitals, and to allow private care options.
President Obama attempted to defund the Veterans Choice Program, which allows vets confronting long wait times and travel to seek private care. President Trump, whom Rep. DesJarlais introduced at a Nashville rally this week, has promised to reform VA health care. “I’d especially like to thank my colleague Dr. Phil Roe from Tennessee, chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, working hard to help America’s vets,” said Rep. DesJarlais.
“His legislation is part of a VA overhaul our veterans desperately need. They deserve the highest quality medical care, starting with access, choice, accountability, and top-notch professionals to provide the best service.”
The American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Concerned Veterans for America, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans for America, and dozens of other groups support this week’s legislation.