Both Oregon senators and Rep. Peter DeFazio have asked Department of Veterans Affairs SecretaryEric Shinseki to stop a process that is likely to change the way the federal agency provides care and services to southern Oregon veterans. They professed dismay with the direction of an independent review of the VA Roseburg Health Care System the department launched last year at their urging.
In a letter from Sens. Wyden and Merkley and Rep. DeFazio, who represents Roseburg in Congress, the three urged the secretary Thursday to “initiate a mid-course correction because this independent review seems unlikely to provide us the data or analysis we need to protect veterans’ access to healthcare at Roseburg.”
They say the study being conducted by consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton abounds with “disconcerting” failings. They fault the consultants’ scope of work, including their choice of who to interview. They fault the consultants for quickly narrowing down the options in a way that would reduce the services delivered directly by the VA medical center. Instead, the consultants’ preferred options call for southern Oregon veterans to receive care in a variety of new ways, from getting treatment at cooperating community hospitals to being remotely monitored at home.