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New report finds sweeping mismanagement at Atlanta VA hospital

WSB-TV
June 18, 2017


DEKALB COUNTY, Georgia - A new inspector general report shows sweeping mismanagement at Atlanta's VA hospital.

Channel 2 investigative reporter Aaron Diamant obtained a copy of the reports that show concerns ranging from safety to sanitation at the DeKalb County facility.

"It's very distressing," Sandra Petit told Diamant. "I wish that they would push toward having integrity at all levels."

The suicide of Petit's son Joseph inside the Atlanta VA hospital went unnoticed by hospital staff for nearly 24 hours in the middle of another federal investigation, we exposed in 2013, which linked mismanagement by hospital leaders for three other patient deaths.

"They did not respect him as a human being, much less a veteran," Petit said.

According to the new report, during a routine review inspectors identified "system weakness" and were not assured that "clinical managers effectively monitor the professional competency of providers, … hospital leaders maintain a clean and safe environment in patient care areas … (or that) clinicians always safely transfer patients from the facility."

Diamant showed part of list to Brandie Petit Robinson, who was as emphatic as she was at a congressional field hearing following her brother Joseph's death.

"No other family needs to go through what we've been through. The VA should have learned a lesson already," Robinson said.

Diamant asked hospital leaders for an interview but got turned down flat.

A VA representative sent Diamant an email saying, "We concur with all recommendations outlined in this report and have implemented several actions to correct the findings. Our commitment to the health and well-being of our veterans is unwavering."


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