Letter to the Editor

Veterans neglected

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Dear Editor,

It's probably a good thing our troops in Iraq didn't see the program Primetime Thursday on 4/8/04 that showed the deplorable conditions in two V.A. hospitals, one in Cleveland and the other in Texas, or they would all be bailing out.

It seems the hostess, Dianne Sawyer, and crew, had inspected these hospitals two years ago. They were bad then, and even worse now. There was filthy bedding, bed sores, feces, mice and mouse droppings, plus lack of care by the nursing staff.

It seems our government can't afford to hire enough staff to do the job, but can afford to pay civilian doctors $100,000 per year to check on the V.A. doctors when they operate.

The civilian doctor is supposed to oversee things, but in most cases, can't seem to get that done in more than 10 or so out of 100 or so requests. The civilian doctors are accountable to no one. Many veterans have died, due to neglect, infections, pneumonia, etc. Several wives of veterans were interviewed, and they all had horror stories to tell. Fortunately, one of the wives pulled her husband out of the V.A. hospital in Texas, and saved his life, in her opinion.

Principi, the big cheese of the entire V.A. system, was too busy to be interviewed by Sawyer, but sent an underling who didn't seem to have a clue, except denial.He may never have been inside a V.A. hospital. It would seem that a tax break to the wealthy is more important to this administration than the welfare of the veterans who have served our country honorably.

Bob Thayer


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