Cornyn, Cruz, Abbott Press VA For Action On Continued Manipulation

March 17, 2016 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Ted Cruz (R-TX), along with Governor Greg Abbott (R), sent a letter to U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald urging him to address the improper scheduling practices  and extended wait times for veterans seeking healthcare across Texas.

On March 8, 2016, the Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General released 12 reports on VA Health Care Systems in Texas, seven of which revealed instances of scheduling mismanagement that led to extended veteran wait times.  The reports concluded that poor training, lack of supervision, and non-centralized scheduling are the primary causes of data manipulation and that improper scheduling is systemic throughout the VA Texas Health Care System.

“We remain troubled that the VA continues to fail to provide timely health care to our nation’s veterans, despite receiving enhanced authorities and funding from Congress to hire new employees and address additional problems facing the VA,” they wrote. "Our veterans have fulfilled their solemn duty to the nation, and the VA has an obligation to provide them with timely, high-quality health care.”

Last year, Sens. Cornyn and Cruz successfully passed an amendment to the Omnibus Appropriations Bill for Fiscal Year 2016 requiring the VA Secretary to provide Congress with a plan to address the long wait times for veterans seeking health care at the South Texas Veterans Health Care System.