The Department of Veterans Affairs has been caught with its pants down ("Iraq veteran accuses VA of downgrading injuries," Web, May 12). VA medical centers all across the country are under investigation, a scandal that should not have happened. Forty-plus veterans died while waiting up to 21 months to be seen by specialist doctors for various life-threatening illnesses at the VA medical center in Phoenix. More deaths are also reported at other VA medical centers nationwide. This is blatant mismanagement, if not criminal activity, under the supposedly watchful eye of VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki.
Veterans organizations are calling for the secretary to be fired and prosecuted for mismanagement and answer for these untimely deaths.
Likewise, Undersecretary for Health Dr. Robert Petzel and Undersecretary for Benefits Allison Hickey should resign or be immediately fired. The inspector general of the United States has been directed to conduct an investigation into the allegations brought upon the VA.
Veterans are often simply handed narcotics for pain and antidepressants for nerves, then they are shoved out the door. Medically, this sort of action solves nothing. Is this proper care for our veterans at VA hospitals? I think not.
The American people should demand Congress step in and stop the atrocities that takes place at VA medical centers. We should demand our veterans be properly cared for. They gave their all for our country, and we now need to give our all to them.
JOHN J. BURY