VA nursing homes are doing really poor jobs

Hard to believe we are taking such poor care of our vets.

The House Veterans Affairs Committee has launched an investigation into care at the VA’s 133 nursing homes after learning the agency had given almost half of them the lowest possible score in secret, internal rankings.

The probe follows an investigation by USA TODAY and The Boston Globe that showed 60 VA nursing homes rated only one out of five stars for quality last year in the agency’s own ranking system.

Internal documents obtained by USA TODAY and the Globe revealed that patients in more than two thirds of VA nursing homes were more likely to suffer pain and serious bedsores than their private sector counterparts. More generally, VA nursing homes scored worse than private nursing homes on a majority of key quality indicators, including rates of anti-psychotic drug prescription and decline in daily living skills.

Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., applauded the committee’s investigation and said he hopes the panel will hold a field hearing in his state, where the VA nursing home in Bedford received one star and rated worse than private nursing homes on 10 of 11 key quality indicators last year, including rates of pain and infection.


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