Statement from Secretary of Veterans Affairs on providing community care


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VA’s priority is to provide needed health care to the Veterans we serve. We work with tens of thousands of health care providers in communities across the country using the acquisition tools most appropriate for VA and the provider to deliver that care. It is clear that serious allegations have been made regarding VA’s purchase authorities and we are working diligently to review them.

VA appreciates the issues Mr. Frye has brought to light, and as he has made clear, there are many acquisition paths within the Veterans Health Administration. It is important to note that the vast majority of the funding identified in the memo went to provide Veterans needed care in the community.

I have directed the OIG to review this matter and any findings of wrongdoing or evidence of harm to Veterans will be shared with the Department of Justice.

Additionally, VA discussed a legislative solution with Congress as early as last year to address provider agreements to expand access to care in the community. A legislative proposal was submitted to Congress on May 1.

In recent weeks, VA appointed Gregg Giddens as Executive Director of the Office of Acquisition, Logistics and Construction to strengthen oversight of VA’s contracting process.

As we work to review and resolve these issues, VA will continue to put Veterans first and provide their care when and where they need it. We will not make decisions that jeopardize their care.

Author

Bob McDonald

Bob McDonald was the eighth Secretary of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.