The list of veterans waiting for benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs is growing longer, as a backlog has piled up over the years. VA is experiencing another problem as well, as Bloomberg reported that more than 400 payments were made by the U.S. government to resolve VA malpractice claims. The news source obtained agency records through a Freedom of Information Act request to show that $91.7 million was paid out nearly $92 million, the highest amount in at least the past dozen years.
“The rapid rise in malpractice judgments against VA mirrors the emerging pattern of preventable veteran deaths and other patient safety issues at VA hospitals,” Representative Jeff Miller, a Florida Republican told Bloomberg in a statement. “What’s missing from the equation is not money or manpower – it’s accountability.”
Cases against the department have included missed diagnoses, delayed treatments and even treatments on the wrong body parts. This shows the number of flaws in VA offices could run even deeper than the backlog, which has been hampering the ability to properly pay out veterans for many years.
Veterans should be aware that suing the Federal Government for malpractice is not easy and will be heavily resisted. There are also time deadlines for bringing this action to court, something that must be considered. There is also an administrative process available for veterans to pursue such claims. The Law Offices of Harold W. Conick & Associates is available to counsel veterans in such matters.