Suits Allege Kansas City VA Hospital Could Have Prevented Hep C Patients’ Deaths
“There was a failure of protocol, both within the hospital (standards) and national standards for monitoring these patients,” said attorney Edward Stump. “They’re supposed to deal with these guys with their conditions, usually it’s twice a year — CT scans and ultrasounds of the abdomen, full physicals, full bloodwork, and those weren’t being done.” Meanwhile, in Florida, VA employees say they were ignored when they complained about health concerns stemming from mold in their office building.
Kansas City Star:
Suits: Kansas City VA Hospital Failed To Treat Hepatitis C
VA staff members knew that Jones had hepatitis C. They’d known since at least 2006. But according to a lawsuit, from 2012 to 2015, Jones didn’t get any of the regular scans or ultrasounds that patients with the condition should get. He also didn’t get drugs approved in 2014 that are highly effective at curing it. By the time the VA staff realized Jones had fallen out of the regular treatment protocol, his condition had deteriorated into fatal liver cancer, according to the suit filed on behalf of Jones’ daughter. (Marso, 11/25)
Tampa Bay Times:
Bay Pines VA Says It Got Out Front Of Mold Problem, But Workers Insist They Were Long Ignored
Dozens of workers at the Bay Pines VA Healthcare System are being moved out of their building because of an infestation of mold that can cause health problems. ...The investigation, conducted in October by the company VRG of Clearwater, identified two types of mold — aspergillus and penicillium, both known to cause health problems in people with compromised immune systems. The molds can lead to allergic reactions and infections in the lungs and other organs, according to the Centers for Disease Control. (Altman, 11/23)
And in military health care news —
Tampa Bay Times:
For First Time Ever, Military's Tricare Will Have Open Enrollment Similiar To Civilian Health Insurance.
For the first time, those using Tricare can take part in an open enrollment season akin to civilian healthcare, allowing users to change or keep their current plan. In addition, military retirees will no longer receive dental benefits through Tricare, but will be able to obtain them through the Office of Personnel Management's Federal Employees Vision Insurance Plan. And family members of active duty personnel, as well as reservists and retirees, will also be eligible to receive greatly expanded vision coverage, according to Patrick Grady, interim chief of the Tricare health plan. (Altman, 11/23)
White House Asks Supreme Court To Fast-Track Ruling On Transgender Military Ban
The Department of Justice asked the Supreme Court on Friday to bypass lower courts and rule quickly on its ban of most transgender military members. ...For a case to bypass lower courts, it must be of "imperative public importance" — important enough to warrant a change in the process it's reviewed by appellate courts, and important enough "to require immediate determination in this court," according to Supreme Court rules. (Lombardo, 11/24)