January 14, 2015
You’ve heard about the problems with the VA – secret wait lists, low-quality care, veterans dead because they couldn’t get treatment . . .
Uncle Sam decided to make a very public attempt at trying to improve. The idea was to send out “Veteran’s Choice” cards to veterans who either have to wait over 30 days for appointments, or live over 40 miles from the nearest treatment facility. I live over 40 miles from the nearest clinic, and have had to wait up to 6 MONTHS for an appointment, so I thought it was a slam-dunk for me.
Well, over the year-end holiday, I got the card in the mail. It isn’t valid unless you call a special 1-800 number to activate it. I called yesterday, and was told that they can’t activate my card because they don’t have me on an approved list from the VA. The 1-800 number doesn’t go to a VA office, it goes to some outside agency who is only running the phone bank for the VA – for profit, of course. They suggested I contact the benefits office at my local clinic, and ask them to submit my information.
Can you hear the merry-go-round? The calliope music? Let me put it another way. Remember what I wrote in a previous blog about how the VA so promptly responds to requests for information from the Social Security offices? That is actually another government agency – this isn’t.
I think this whole new program is just window dressing so Obama can say he did something about the VA mess, but nothing is actually improving at all.