N.C. senator: VA can learn from private facilities

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Sen. Richard Burr, North Carolina Republican, said Wednesday that Veterans Affairs hospitals could stand to learn from private facilities about treating mental health issues.

“We don’t do a very good job at treating mental health, identifying mental health tendencies, we don’t screen really well when people come back from conflict deployed,” the top Republican on the Senate Veteran’s Affairs Committee said on MSNBC. “We’re doing better, but we have a long way to go.”

The VA functions just like every other bureaucracy in the federal government and doesn’t operate in a way that makes sense, Mr. Burr said. He also said how difficult it is for one organization to care for so many people with such diverse needs.

“I’m not sure VA in its current condition is capable of handling World War II vets who have a defined set of needs, and also today’s veterans, who are exposed to different things that we’ve seen for decades,” he said. “We need to focus on training our medical professionals.”

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