Sunday, October 09, 2011

DVA Delivers Slap in the Face to Veterans

Back on September 1st we received a press release from the DVA. After reading it, we were incensed at the misguided, misdirected efforts and spending by the DVA. We were so angry we decided to wait and calm down before writing about it here.

The DVA conducted a study of its own doctors to measure job satisfaction.

Well, la-di-da! We are so overjoyed that their doctors are happiest doing research on us Veterans, rather than simply treating us, that we almost wet ourselves.

Here is one of the statements from the press release:

VA Under Secretary for Health Dr. Robert A. Petzel added, "With physician job satisfaction vital to both workforce retention and better patient outcomes, the study holds important implications for maintaining a high performance health system."

Petzel, along with VA Chief Academic Affiliations Officer Dr. Malcolm Cox, VA Chief Research and Development Officer Dr. Joel Kupersmith, and VA Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Health Dr. Robert L. Jesse, co-authored a related commentary to the study, "Building Human Capital: Discovery, Learning and Professional Satisfaction," also published in the August issue of Academic Medicine.

And this, although it was the lead paragraph, details the conclusions drawn from the study:

Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) physicians who spend at least 20 percent of their time in research activities are more likely to have greater job satisfaction and report more favorable job characteristics, according to an article published July 27 in the August issue of Academic Medicine. The study, "Job Characteristics and Job Satisfaction among Physicians Involved with Research in the Veterans Health Administration," also shows higher job satisfaction among physicians conducting research in VA facilities located on the same campus or within walking distance of an affiliated medical school.

We are not upset that the doctors are performing research, indeed, the DVA medical staff has made very important discoveries in treatment of many different injuries, wounds and diseases. It is a record that should instill pride in anyone attached to that staff.

No, what lights our fire is that the DVA had to spend money to conduct a useless study. Common sense could have told any rational person the outcome of the study, that doctors doing what doctors do, especially research, leads to a contented employee. And to have staff wasting their time and the taxpayers money to not only conduct this study, but to also write a journal article about it is hideously ludicrous! The waste of time, and money here is inexcusable. Not that the DVA is known for not wasting money.

And the raters in the regional offices get bonuses for denying claims and thereby saving the taxpayer money! And that money goes to projects like these to be squandered?

We have advocated here on more than one occasion that the DVA conduct a comprehensive study of Vietnam Veterans, determining by where they served during the Vietnam War, compared to their rates and types of diseases, what the relationship to their health is to the use of tactical herbicides in Vietnam. We offer a model for such a study. Click to view a copy of our proposed study: Morbidity and Mortality among Vietnam Veterans and Vietnam Era Veterans.

The DVA will never agree to commission such a study, however, as it’s outcome will show the Department-wide conspiracy to deny benefits to Vietnam Veterans that goes back over 40 years.

Such a bias is driven by two divergent political philosophies: a liberal philosophy that wants nothing to do with “that dirty Vietnam War!”, and a conservative philosophy that is in place to protect the chemical companies – each a giant corporation [think: Dow, Monsanto, Hercules, Diamond Shamrock, DuPont], that, were the truth told, would cripple the chemical industry, affect the agri-business industry, and have a very adverse effect on the economy. Both political sides also fear the repercussions of the ultimate culpability and liability falling on the United States government for what has become a crime against humanity.

As you can probably tell by now, we are even more incensed than we were initially at the gross negligence, no…make that gross criminal negligence by a Cabinet Department that has the mission to care for the Veterans of this nation, and another Cabinet Department that ill uses those men and women while they become Veterans. Do not believe for one moment that the Department of Veterans Affairs is alone in this, for the Department of Defense has been complicit all along, to cover up their criminal acts when contracting for the manufacture, packaging, delivery and use of tactical herbicides.

It’s time to pay the piper.


”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

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1 comment:

  1. Anonymous10:46

    I don't know what other doctors are like in VA OPC's
    but the guy I have seldom if ever touches me or does a physical exam of me. He sits behind his desk at his computer and plugs in my meds. The last time I was there my Blood Pressure was 187 over 110 and my pulse was 114. That was done by the nurse, basically I was having a tacecardia attack. He prescribed a BP med that didn't work. I went to my outside doc and he did a full work up and tests and gave me BP meds that brought my blood pressure down. Some of these people working at these VA clinics are just trying to get there 20 in. And now Im 100% disabled with unemployability, and have been waiting a year for them to give me my SMC rating and retro pay. We call and they say "They are trying to figure out how much retro money I should get" but they won't tell
    me what the SMC rate is. I went through prostate cancer a year ago still waiting, I got peripheral neuropathy, and I got a $306.00 retro pay for my ischemic heart, $306.00? from 1986. Right even the VA guy said he didn't understand that one. Im getting really tired of fighting this group of incompetent uncaring people.