It’s been a few days since we’ve heard what VA executives have done to get a bonus, right?
The Augusta Chronicle is now reporting that between 2006 and 2008, Dr. Thomas Kiernan was awarded $10,000 in bonuses for service at the Charlie Norwood Veterans Affairs Medical Center. What did Dr. Kiernan do to merit such a lavish bonus? Perhaps it was finding a cure for a disease? No? Perhaps, improving services to you, our veterans? No. According to the Chronicle, Dr. Kiernan, VA chief of staff, was at the helm when the VA notified more than 10,000 veterans that they might have been exposed to improperly sterilized equipment.
No doubt that was just an off year, right? Well, in 2010, Dr. Luke Stapleton, Dr. Kiernan’s successor, was awarded a $5,000 bonus. For what? We’re not sure either but, again according to the Chronicle, Dr. Stapleton was at the helm when delays in endoscopy referrals was beginning to accumulate and three cancer-related deaths occurred the following year.
My friends, why are we, the American people, paying lavish bonuses to physicians who abdicate their responsibility? Why do we pay bonuses that most people don’t make over months and months of hard work to people who let you, our veterans, die?
If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million time: it’s time for a special prosecutor. We need to fulfill our promise to care for him who has borne the battle.