The report was ordered by the Obama Administration, which means that its conclusions call for more government spending. But some Republicans praised the existence of the report at all, noting that the first step to a solution is admitting that there's a problem.
As the Associated Press reported:
In a scathing appraisal, a review ordered by President Barack Obama of the troubled Veterans Affairs health care system concludes that medical care for veterans is beset by "significant and chronic system failures," substantially verifying problems raised by whistleblowers and internal and congressional investigators.
A summary of the review by deputy White House chief of staff Rob Nabors says the Veterans Health Administration must be restructured and that a "corrosive culture" has hurt morale and affected the timeliness of health care. The review also found that a 14-day standard for scheduling veterans' medical appointments is unrealistic and that some employees manipulated the wait times so they would appear to be shorter.
Rep. Jeff Miller, the Republican chairman of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, said the report was a late but welcome response from the White House and vowed to work with the administration to fix the system.
"It appears the White House has finally come to terms with the serious and systemic VA health care problems we've been investigating and documenting for years," he said in a statement.
The AP also notes the VA "acts with little transparency or accountability" and that "recommendations to improve care are slowly implemented or ignored."
Little transparency, little accountability, resistance to change: this is government health care.