Politics

Boozman Statement on VA’s Inspector General Report on Follow-up Health Care Inspection at Fayetteville VA Medical Center

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) released the following statement in response to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General’s (OIG) health care inspection at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks in Fayetteville to assess improvements following pathology oversight failures:

“Changes are clearly needed to prevent misconduct that puts the health of veterans at risk like what occurred at the Fayetteville VA Medical Center. Strengthening the reporting process for clinical disclosures will ensure appropriate measures are in place so we can make certain veterans receive the high-quality care they deserve. As a member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, I will continue to advance policies that put the needs of our veterans first and hold accountable those responsible for wrongdoing.”

Boozman has been leading efforts to ensure the VA improves oversight and accountability in order to prevent future health care failures. The senator recently joined Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee leaders in urging VA Secretary Denis McDonough to address oversight failures at medical facilities across the country.

In August, Boozman helped introduce the bipartisan Strengthening Oversight for Veterans Act to provide the VA OIG with the authority to subpoena testimony from former VA employees who have left federal service, former contractor personnel who performed work for the Department, or other potentially relevant individuals during the course of its inspections, reviews and investigations.

As then-Chairman of the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies (MilCon-VA) Appropriations Subcommittee, Boozman led the effort to include language in legislation that required the VA Secretary to submit a departmental response plan to Congress. The provision is now being implemented at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks and for all future cases of clinical disclosures to prevent similar incidents.

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