Unfortunately, our predictive abilities at NCPA’s Health Policy Blog appear to be holding up pretty well. Last July, I wrote that giving billions of dollars to the Veterans Health Administration to “fix” the problems of long waiting lists for treatment would be viewed by the VHA bureaucrats as a “reward,” and they would react accordingly.
That is exactly what has happened:
One year after an explosive Veterans Affairs scandal sparked national outrage, the number of veterans on wait lists to be treated for everything from Hepatitis C to post-traumatic stress is 50 percent higher
Ahead of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs budget hearing scheduled for Thursday, VA leaders also warned that they are facing a $2.6 billion budget shortfall. They said they may have to start a hiring freeze or furloughs unless funding is reallocated for the federal government’s second-largest department. (Emily Wax-Thibodeaux, “One year after VA scandal, the number of veterans waiting for care is up 50 percent,” Washington Post, June 23, 2015)
At what point does a government bureaucracy that fails so badly get put out of business? Not very often, and not soon enough.
NCPA’s CEO, Allen B. West, has also written about this scandal.