Tags: va | secret | wait | list | disputed

VA Secret Wait List Disputed by Top Officials at Phoenix Hospital

Friday, 02 May 2014 12:12 PM

By Michael Mullins

The alleged VA secret wait list blamed for at least 40 veteran deaths at a Phoenix, Arizona, hospital is having its existence disputed by top VA officials at the facility, while the top VA physician who first brought the allegations to light countered by accusing the officials of lying to cover up the scandal.

On Tuesday, Phoenix VA Director Sharon Helman, along with her chief of staff, Dr. Darren Deering, sat for an interview with CNN in which they denied there was ever an effort by VA administrators to conceal wait times for patients.

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama's Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

"We have never instructed our staff to create a secret list, to maintain a secret list, to shred a secret list — that has never come from our office as far as instruction to our staff," Deering told CNN.

"It's never come from me," Helman added.

Within hours after the interview aired, Dr. Sam Foote, who first released the details of the list, referred to the denial as a joke.

"They started this secret list in February of 2013," Foote told CNN, having recently retired from the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care system after spending 24 years with it.

"At some time, they changed over from paper to electronic, in early summer, maybe approximately June or July. And transferred names over to the electronic waiting list," Foote added. "And she [Helman] was called on an ethics consult evaluation about that — it's written down, documented in July."

The alleged scandal broke last week when CNN reported that upwards of 1,600 veterans were forced to wait months for their medical appointments due to Phoenix VA hospital staff maintaining two appointment lists — an official computerized "sham" roster, which inaccurately showed veterans seeing doctors on a timely basis, and a secret, genuine waiting list.

The purpose of the alleged secret waiting list was reportedly to conceal how long patients actually had to wait before being seen by a physician.

In response to the allegations, the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee said it would convene a hearing on the incident after a team of investigators dispatched by the VA's inspector general in Washington returned with a report.

"The moment we heard about the allegations around these 40 individuals who had died in Phoenix, I immediately ordered the secretary of Veterans Affairs, Gen. (Eric) Shinseki, to investigate," President Barack Obama said Monday.

Since the allegations were first made, an email from one Phoenix VA staffer has surfaced and appeared to lend credence to Foote's allegations, with the staffer referring to the secret wait list as "unethical and a disservice to our Veterans."

Urgent: Assess Your Heart Attack Risk in Minutes. Click Here.

Related Stories:

© 2015 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
You May Also Like

Facebook, Instagram Down: Brief Outage Sparks Twitter Fury

Tuesday, 27 Jan 2015 14:08 PM

Facebook and Instagram went down for about an hour early Tuesday morning, sending Twitter into a tailspin. . . .

Missing Couple Found? Bodies Discovered Near Abandoned Car in Georgia

Tuesday, 27 Jan 2015 13:58 PM

Two bodies were found Monday in the search for missing couple Elrey "Bud" Runion, 69, and his wife, June, 66, reported c . . .

Greg Anthony Arrested: CBS Sports Analyst Offers Undercover $80 for Sex

Tuesday, 27 Jan 2015 13:51 PM

Greg Anthony, a CBS Sports analyst, has been accused of agreeing to pay an undercover officer $80 for sex. . . .

Top Stories

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved