The U.S. Senate passes VA Accountability Act

West Virginia

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WVNS)– The Senate passed the VA Accountability Act. This Act was introduced by U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia), Cory Gardner (R-Colorado), Jerry Moran (R-Kansas), Bill Cassidy (R-Louisana), and Susan Collins (R-Maine). The Act would help bring accountability to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Government Accountability Office report from 2017 revealed that VA facilities are failing to report providers who made major medical errors to the National Practitioner Data Bank. A USA Today article stated the VA concealed medical care failures and mistakes that were allowed to continue.

“While a great majority of VA doctors provide the very best of care, the system can be ruined by a few bad apples and it’s our duty to protect Veterans from these dangerous doctors,” Sen. Manchin stated. “I am proud to have joined my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to pass this important bill because we need to hold all our medical professionals accountable.”

The VA Provider Accountability Act will require the VA to inform the National Practitioner Data Bank and state licensing boards of major adverse actions committed by medical providers at the VA. Additionally, it would prevent the VA from signing settlements with fired employees to hide major medical mistakes in their personnel files. 

The legislation was referred to the House of Representatives for consideration on Dec. 23, 2019. It is currently in the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

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