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• Delays are endemic. In addition to care waiting lists, the VA is behind on processing disability claims and constructing facilities.

• Some VA health care providers have lost their medical licenses, but the VA hides that information from patients.

• The federal government has paid out $845 million for VA medical malpractice settlements since 2001.

Mr. Coburn included a photo from one VA facility in North Carolina that couldn’t find proper storage for 37,000 benefit claim folders. They were piled on top of filing cabinets, apparently in random order, making it not only poor case management, but also a fire hazard, Mr. Coburn said.

In the stunning case of the police chief, Richard Meltz, head of security at the Bedford VA Medical Center, pleaded guilty in January to involvement in what the FBI called “two sadistic kidnapping, rape and murder conspiracies.” Meltz advised two others on how to avoid being tracked, such as not using toll roads, and where to dump bodies, according to the FBI.