Whistle-blower claims ABQ VA involved in scandal

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – The Albuquerque Veterans Affairs Hospital may be deeply involved in the spreading scandal of long treatment delays for seriously ill veterans.

A national report now claims that a massive cover-up may be going on here.

A person identified as an Albuquerque VA doctor gave detailed examples to the online news magazine “The Daily Beast.” The whistle-blower says some employees at the Albuquerque VA have spent the last few weeks trying to hide or destroy evidence of delays and secret waiting lists.

New Mexico Senator Tom Udall says the doctor’s claims match what he’s heard from constituents.

“I’m increasingly outraged by what I hear,” Udall said. “This is another set of allegations that are very serious and we need to get to the bottom of this.”

The doctor claims an Albuquerque patient who requested an appointment in March for a serious heart condition wasn’t seen until last Friday – and only then because the patient was admitted to the hospital for heart failure.

Another patient’s blood test showed a possible brain tumor last December – he wasn’t seen again until last month, according to the article.

A spokesperson for the Albuquerque VA tells KRQE News 13 they’re ordering an outside investigator to look into the allegations.

Udall says he wants an end to the bonuses and other financial rewards that give doctors and staff incentives to cover up wait lists.

New Mexico is one of at least six states accused of hiding huge wait lists.

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