VA, IHS should be merged

The problems under investigation in the Billings Area Indian Health Service are not unique in the national system. Twice, the Aberdeen Area IHS office in South Dakota has been investigated by the federal government, once in 1993 and again in 2010. In 1993, then-U.S. Sen. Tom Daschle, D-S.D., requested the GAO conduct a study of IHS employment practices, specifically in the areas of salaries and recruitment programs. “Scrutiny over the management of Indian Health Service has been a continual concern over the past decade,” said U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson, D-S.D., a member of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. “The federal government has a treaty and responsibility to provide quality health care to American Indians throughout the United States.” Johnson said he will continue to engage with IHS to ensure high quality standards are met when it comes to management, staffing and patient care. [Cindy Uken, Billings Gazette]
From the Rapid City Journal:
U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson, D-S.D., said Wednesday that he added language to a Veterans Affairs funding bill that would put the realignment of VA medical facilities in Hot Springs and elsewhere on hold. The language, Johnson said, is in a bill attached to the Senate version of the 2015 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriation Bill.
It would be a ridiculous exercise for President Obama to fire VA Secretary Eric Shinseki and engage in another confirmation spectacle with the earth haters.

Democrats should honor Shinseki's decades of service then move on a merger of the two services: urge Senator Tester and Senator Johnson to hold hearings on that consideration.


Anonymous said...

Hey Larry,

Lynn from Madville. It just annoys the hell out of me when a few in the Republican Party use every opportunity they can for pure political gain rather than what is good for the people.

It makes me and probably others skeptical as to the real motives behind their actions and what is the real history? Benghazi to the VA. Did the Republicans cut funding to VA for example which ended up contributing to what has happened and now placing blame on this administration and Shinseki to gain political advantage once again?

Constituents have jobs and lives and only so much time to try and disseminate the best they can on what is really going on. We are supposed to trust these elected officials. I just wish these elected officials would own up to mistakes, take responsibility and try to collectively solve problems and truly serve for the greater good than just themselves.

I know....Pie in the sky!

larry kurtz said...

Every Democrat in South Dakota should have registered Republican, Lynn: there is no Dem primary in the state that needs more attention than the governor and US Senate races.

As was said at Madville: the scariest reality is that even if Dems were able to nominate Lora Hubbel in the Republican gube primary she would win the general.

Anonymous said...

Lynn here again. I'm the definition of a true Rhino now and feel as if I'm waging a guerilla campaign but in reality with the present situation here in South Dakota it's the only way I can feel empowered to make my vote count in the primary while my support will go to Democratic candidates in the general election. I hope to volunteer for the state Democratic Party and/or their candidates in the future.

larry kurtz said...

Now i get the Rhino, Lynn!