Congress’ fix for the VA will only make things worse

What to do about a corrupt Veterans Affairs health care system?

Why, give them more money, of course, which is precisely what Congress did. The House passed H.R. 3230 on a voice vote and a Senate version passed 97-3.

The CBO estimates the bill will cost about $54 billion a year, but the estimate could be low because it is unknown how many veterans will take advantage of its low-cost coverage.

“The magnitude of those budgetary effects is highly uncertain,” the CBO admits. “A significant number of veterans could receive new and expanded health care benefits under the House bill. How many would ultimately receive those benefits and the resulting costs will depend on a number of factors that are very difficult to predict.”

Where will the money come from? Nobody knows.

If the VA is inundated with more veterans seeking inexpensive coverage, how long will wait times be and how quickly will the cover-up begin?

Throwing more money at a broken system is not the answer.

A Wall Street Journal editorial points out:

“What neither bill does is address the fundamental problem of excessive demand, which stems from the VA’s guarantee of virtually universal care at little to no out-of-pocket costs. This would involve increased cost-sharing, but that would mean reforming a government program through free-market incentives. Democrats oppose this, and Republicans are afraid to propose it.”

Congress often makes things worse when it tries to fix things.

6 comments on “Congress’ fix for the VA will only make things worse

  1. Rincon says:

    Since anyone that objects to this bill would be slandered mercilessly by their opponents, all but three Senators voted for it. Welcome to the dark side of free speech. Somewhat of a necessary evil in this case.

  2. Steve says:

    This country’s veterans deserve to be provided the best care we can provide. More money should be tied to better results and constant oversight should be an integral part of the system.

    Its true there is only one way to properly provide for people who voluntarily gave up much of their freedoms to be a part of the governments plans and pawns. The government is the responsible party. As such we ALL are the responsible party.

    In this case I say what ever it takes is the answer. JUST GET IT DONE.

  3. Athos says:

    More money means bigger bonu$ for the bureaucrats who run this boondoggle, NOT better care for those that deserve it.

    DC is broken. It’s time everybody wake up and face the truth.

  4. Rincon says:

    Yep.

  5. Robert Frank says:

    It seems clear the VA senior leadership must be “turned around” from a culture that:

    1. Values self-serving, management bonuses over urgent, life-saving customer care,

    2. Tolerates gross management negligence leading to substantiated allegations of felony crimes,

    3. Allegedly spends a major percentage of resources on improper treatment of veteran illnesses not related to military service,

    4. Fails to quickly treat recently returning, disabled war veterans with high priorities.

    Turn around experts can suggest that quick changes in the culture of such organizations require systematic changes in the entire leadership structure. The members of leadership who can avoid prosecution for crimes are often poor choices for training new managers.

    Since the VA has exhibited serious management problems for decades, token changes in organizational structures and policies as advocated by the acting Secretary are doomed to certain failure. Such is easily projected to lead to avoidable veteran suicides and early deaths from untreated elderly veterans.

    The VA does not need more money. It needs to be re-invented/re-organized with a new vision, new leadership culture, and new operating policies. While this is being done, I agree with those who advocate that Congress transfer VA and its resources to be under the DoD Health Care System.

    The old VA positions can then be rapidly abolished, necessary DoD positions created, and the best qualified individuals hired to eliminate the confusion, conflicts, duplications and wasted resources from the failed VA systems. While the DoD systems are not perfect, such a merger could likely be a vastly better and faster solution than trying to re-invent the VA.

  6. Athos says:

    What policy does President Pinocchio and family, have?

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