As of 2022…
- Over one-third of all veterans’ medical visits have already been sent outside of the VA system
- And more than 25% of VA healthcare dollars have already been diverted to the private, for-profit sector as a result of the VA MISSION Act.
- One-third of the union jobs at the VA that the AIR commission would destroy are held by veterans themselves.
This fiasco must be stopped.
Petition to #SaveMyVA from AIR Commission Closures – Action Network
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Buzz Davis, Vets for Peace in Tucson
“The Department of Veterans Affairs has unveiled a plan that calls for closing 17 aging or underused medical centers, while shifting services to more than 30 new or rebuilt hospitals. In some cases, it would rely on private care.
Under the nearly $2 trillion proposal released Monday, the department would lose a net of three medical centers and 174 outpatient health clinics but would gain 255 health care facilities, including new clinics, stand-alone rehabilitation centers and nursing homes.
Medical centers in areas with diminishing veteran populations are among those slated to close, while others would be built in growing urban centers, the West and the South — areas where veteran populations are growing…”
“The Veterans Healthcare Policy Institute is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan research and policy organization that studies the provision of healthcare and other services to the those who served in the US military as well as their families and communities.”
“Joe Biden touted himself as friend of veterans while on the campaign trail. But now he’s overseeing the continued privatization of the VA and backing nominees that brag about being venture capitalists.”
Biden’s VA Secretary Proposes Shutting Down Dozens of Facilities
It’s both bad politics and bad policy.
BY SUZANNE GORDON MARCH 21, 2022. Prospect
“On March 14th, the Department of Veterans Affairs VA) released some deeply flawed proposals for reorganizing the nation’s largest and only publicly funded, fully integrated health care system.
Rather than building back better at the VA-run Veterans Health Administration (VHA), VA Secretary Denis McDonough’s blueprint embraces, rather than rejects, further outsourcing of care for more than nine million veterans, and proposes VHA downsizing that will dramatically accelerate that trend.
It’s not often that national unions representing around 250,000 VHA workers and right-wing Republicans like South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and Staten Island Rep. Nicole Malliotakis issue simultaneous denunciations of privatization. But that’s what happened in the wake of McDonough’s facility-closing recommendations to the VA Asset and Infrastructure Review (AIR) Commission, a panel just nominated by President Biden.
Adding to the political confusion was the outraged response of Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT), who co-sponsored the VA MISSION Act of 2018, which created the AIR Commission. During Joe Biden’s first year in office, the MISSION Act also helped divert $18 billion from the VHA’s direct-care budget to the private health care industry, whose providers now consume 20 percent of the VHA’s budget..”