WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) – ranking member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee – today released the following statement in response to the Office of Inspector General’s (OIG) report on the Veterans Health Administration’s (VHA) oversight of community care providers at the Eastern Kansas Health Care System in Topeka and Leavenworth:
“Five years after the MISSION Act was signed into law, the Inspector General’s report shows the VA is still struggling to appropriately manage and oversee aspects of patient safety in both community and VA medical facilities. I am concerned by a growing pattern of negligence by the VA in coordinating veteran care and holding providers accountable.
“This report highlights the importance of careful treatment and supervision of veteran patients with chronic pain and mental health conditions. It also underscores the urgent need to pass the Veterans’ HEALTH Act to improve the level of care VA provides, make certain VA is following the law, and strengthen coordination of care and information sharing between VA and the community.
“I recently met with VA Inspector General Missal to discuss this issue and will be seeking meetings with VA leadership in Kansas and in Washington, D.C. VA and Optum Health must promptly implement the Inspector General’s recommendations to make certain our veterans are receiving high-quality and safe care from VA.
“VA is the primary coordinator of care for veterans, and it is their responsibility to follow the law and ensure veterans are receiving the safest and best care possible.”
Sen. Moran introduced the bipartisan Veterans’ HEALTH Act to protect and expand access to care for veterans, safeguard veterans’ ability to choose their own providers, and require VA to improve the quality of care veterans receive.