VA In Midst of ‘Leadership Crisis’

The Department of Veterans Affairs network of health systems faces “crises in leadership and culture” in addition to other systematic problems, according to an independent assessment released Friday.

The flaws rampant in VA hospitals demand a “system-wide reworking” of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA).

The independent review was mandated by the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act signed into law by President Obama in 2014 following revelations about secret waitlists at VA hospitals that led to dozens of veteran deaths.

The report sheds light on the “systemic, critical problems” currently facing the VA’s integrated health care system.

“The assessments … provided evidence that the organization is plagued by many problems: growing bureaucracy, leadership and staffing challenges, and an unsustainable trajectory of capital costs,” the review reads.

The study was conducted by Grant Thornton LLP, McKinsey & Company, the RAND Corporation, and MITRE. The researchers probed hospital care, medical services, and other types of care at VA facilities. The study included interviews with VA employees, visits to 87 separate VA facilities, and analysis of data from the VHA, among other sources of information.