Allegations of wrongdoing made toward Amarillo VA facility

Allegations of wrongdoing made toward Amarillo VA facility

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Amarillo's Veterans Affairs facility is making national headlines after investigations contend wrongdoing.

It's a system thousands of veterans here in Amarillo rely on heavily.

But new findings from an investigation show as many as 70 veterans received improper care at the VA.

Many veterans come to Amarillo's VA looking for the best health care...including those with traumatic brain injuries, (or TBIs).

TBI exams can only be conducted by neurologists, neurosurgeons, psychiatrists or psychiatrists.

But in examining the policy, this was not done for many patients.

"The fact that there were 70 veterans who were potentially affected by exams from non-qualified or non-privileged doctors is shocking and disappointing," says Veteran Attorney Benjamin Krause.

Diagnosis from the TBI examination is required to get certain benefits, leading many to believe there are veterans lacking.

"Neurological impairment is one of the most difficult types of injuries to diagnose, treat and rehabilitate and I sure don't want a nurse checking out my brain. I don't want someone without proper training," says Krause.

Amarillo VA Director Michael Keifer tells us it is not up to their facility to decide who gets what benefits. But he says he is confident veterans are getting the best care there is to offer.

"The VA goes through the process of implementing a rule, of putting out the guidance, training people to do it, so there may be a gap between the rule and the absolute adherence to that rule and so what we've been asked to do as every VHA was asked to do is to look at cases that may not have had the full benefit of those four, big four reviewed," says Keifer.

They have now done that and turned the list into the veterans health administration. It is now up to the VHA to decide how to move forward.

If any veteran has a question or concern regarding a new or existing benefits claim, you can call 1-800-827-1000.

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