More Than 600 Vets Waiting for Appointments in Nebraska-Western - KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings

More Than 600 Vets Waiting for Appointments in Nebraska-Western Iowa VA System

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Tens of thousands of veterans are still waiting for appointments at VA hospitals across the country.

An audit of more than 700 Veterans Affairs facilities was released Monday, detailing the depth of the problems plaguing the department.

The report shows more than 57,000 patients are still waiting for their initial medical appointments more than 90 days after first requesting them.

An additional 64,000 veterans who enrolled in the VA health care system over the past ten years have never had a single appointment.

According to the audit findings, a 14–day deadline for providing care to newly enrolled veterans was "simply not attainable" due to growing demand and a lack of capacity. The audit also noted that 13 percent of VA schedulers say supervisors told them to falsify appointment dates to make waiting times appear shorter.

The audit found that the VA Nebraska-Western Iowa Health Care System had 606 appointment requests during the past decade that have not been scheduled. The report says another nearly 400 veterans had sought appointments at the other two VA facilities in Iowa.

The report also shows another 317 patients were placed on waiting lists for initial appointments since they couldn't be scheduled within 90 days.

The Department of Veterans Affairs says 110 Kansas veterans are waiting for appointments at VA hospitals and clinics for 90 days or more. An additional 977 veterans in Kansas who have enrolled in the VA health care system during the past 10 years have never had appointments.

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