Your morning veterans news report for Tuesday, 7/22:
Report says retaliation by supervisors common at Veterans Administration (Associated Press)
Medical professionals from coast to coast have pointed out problems at the VA, only to suffer retaliation from supervisors and other high-ranking officials, according to a report by a private government watchdog.
VA secretary nominee faces Senate grilling, full plate if approved (Washington Times)
Senators today will grill Robert McDonald, the former chairman and CEO of consumer giant Procter & Gamble, about whether he is the right man for that daunting job. The confirmation hearing begins at 3 p.m. ET today.
Veterans voice problems with VA’s new painkiller policy (WAVY.com)
The Opioid Safety Initiative requires VA doctors consider alternatives to pain medicines for their patients, including behavior modification, massage therapy, yoga and acupuncture, among other means.
VA is failing dead veterans, too (Washington Times)
Editorial: Many rural areas have no national cemeteries close by, and rural veterans are often buried in cemeteries that are a considerable distance from his friends and loved ones, making pilgrimages to their graves difficult and painful. The VA’s National Cemetery Administration “gamed” the numbers by fudging the definition of who is “rural.”
As the VA flounders, community nonprofits step in for veterans (Huffington Post)
Community-based nonprofit organizations are giving the kind of personal attention, dignity and trust that a massive government bureaucracy like the VA never could.
Reid fears gridlock will upend border, veterans measures (The Washington Post)
Senators last month approved a bipartisan plan to provide the beleaguered agency with more funding and hiring authority, but talks with the Republican-controlled House have stalled in recent days over the eventual price tag.
Obama administration was warned about scheduling issues soon after 2008 election (Fox News)
Officials had briefed the Obama transition team in 2008 on the need to reduce “excessive wait times through the development of a new system.