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Ask a Vet
Author: TriSec    Date: 01/02/2018 10:43:45

Good Morning.

We'll start the new year with a look back at 2017. This used to be our bread and butter, hard to believe that we rarely look at the statistics now. As you know, we have long used our friends at Antiwar.com as a source, but it now appears they have moved on to other things.


Looking at Military Times, we find a low casualty count for 2017 of 33 servicemembers that have been killed in the line of duty across various theaters. [This is not in a convenient list format - so I hope you will all check the link.]

Whether or not the media even considers deceased servicemembers anymore in the big picture, every single one of them left behind a family. A sobering reminder of the ongoing cost of our national folly.

Speaking of cost, at least we are still able to provide an update to the Cost of War, coming from the long-running National Priorities Project.

So we find this morning's Cost of War passing through:

$ 1, 807, 938, 800, 000 .00


And taking out the ol' stopwatch, we seem to have increased to about $10k every four seconds.

And lest we forget our actual veterans in this new year, we'll move on to a completely disturbing story out of Roseburg, OR. Remember those "death panels"? It appears they actually do exist, under the corporate sounding name of a "utilization management team."


NY Times – The push to improve the performance ranking of Roseburg VA pits doctors and caregivers against facility administrators who put veterans lives at risk to improve ratings.

In the chase for higher bonuses through better performance metrics, Roseburg VA administrators are putting veterans lives at risk while interfering with medical decisions made by staff to provide medical care.

The Department of Veterans Affairs uses an internal rating metric from one star to five stars to evaluate the quality of care and other important factors. While the attempt to rate quality seems vital, but VA administrators have figured out how to rig the game. To evade lower ratings or penalties, they refuse to provide certain treatments or even to admit certain patients when doing so puts their rating at risk.

Administrators at Roseburg VA are no different.

The practice is generally referred to as “unauthorized practice of medicine” and is generally regarded as the practice of medicine without a license. It occurs when someone gives medical advice or treatment without a professional license. It can also occur when a nonlicensed person dictates the medical care a person receives.

At Roseburg VA, one of the poorest rated VA medical centers in the country, veterans lives are put at risk by hospital administrators trying to score points for promotions and bonuses.

These administrators rig the system by denying care using a death panel called a “utilization management team” that dictates who will be admitted based on the likelihood of positive outcome instead of need or ability to provide care. Needed care for very ill veterans is refused or rationed in favor of less costly and less risky procedures to boost positive outcomes while keeping costs down.

While the NY Times stopped short of calling this spade a spade, I did it for them – Roseburg VA Medical Center is overtly engaged in rationing healthcare using a death panel that overrules decisions made by facility medical doctors treating the actual veteran.

Not only is the scheme at the facility unethical, and a form of medical malpractice, it is intentionally refusing health care VA is required by law to provide in an effort to rig the system for improved performance numbers and higher bonuses.

As you read the following excerpt, please note over half Roseburg VA’s beds sit empty and the facility director received a substantial bonus for improving Roseburg’s star rating in 2016....


So, it's on to 2018. AAV will carry on as always, now in our 12th year! (April)

 

24 comments (Latest Comment: 01/02/2018 22:42:57 by livingonli)
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