Canceled VA appts pushed vet to suicide attempt
Investigation confirms San Diego VA falsified wait times for patients
San Diego Union Tribune
By Jeanette Steele
March 31, 2016
An investigation released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs says the San Diego VA hospital triggered one veteran’s suicide attempt in 2014 by repeatedly canceling his mental health appointments.
The investigation also found that at least two San Diego VA employees instructed appointment clerks to “zero out” wait times in the scheduling database, presenting an unrealistically positive picture of how long patients were waiting for mental health care.
The tactics may have affected hundreds of San Diego veterans seeking mental health treatment.
The VA’s inspector general found that employees in the San Diego mental health clinic scheduled more than 700 appointments with a 98 to 100 percent rate of zero-day wait times -- described as virtually impossible without data manipulation.
The findings are among more than 70 investigations the VA has released nationally over the past few weeks.
The investigations of VA facilities in several states followed a sweeping scandal in 2014 that started over allegations of falsified wait times at the Phoenix VA hospital.
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Linked from RawStory