Shulkin: VA plans quicker action to stem employee drug theft

AP News
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Posted: Jun 20, 2017 2:11 PM
Shulkin: VA plans quicker action to stem employee drug theft

WASHINGTON (AP) — Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin says he's taking immediate steps to remove employees found to have stolen opioid and other drugs from VA medical centers. He is citing a new department policy and a flawed accountability process that has delayed disciplinary action.

Shulkin says 300 out of 1,500 pending cases of employee misconduct involve drug theft. He says in response to rising cases of reported drug theft, the VA would seek to proceed with possible disciplinary action.

The Associated Press reported last month that federal authorities were investigating dozens of new cases of possible opioid and other drug theft by VA employees, even after the VA announced "zero tolerance" in February.

Shulkin disclosed the efforts as he touted a bill passed by Congress that would make firing VA employees easier.