Rep. Black Demands Answers on Patient Care at Murfreesboro VA; Leads Letter Calling for Independent Investigation
Washington, DC– Today, Congressman Diane Black led a letter to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Robert McDonald highlighting stunning reports of mismanagement and inefficiencies at the Alvin C. York Campus of the VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System, located in Murfreesboro. The letter lists a series of questions for the VA to answer about the state of affairs at the Murfreesboro hospital and further demands an independent investigation into the facility by the Office of Inspector General.
Congressman Black was compelled to write the VA after multiple sources reported to her office that the Murfreesboro facility is no longer accepting new patients, instead referring them to Nashville. The reports further claim that the emergency room in Murfreesboro is closed and now functions as an urgent care center that closes at 8:00 PM daily, and was once left without a physician to staff the premises – resulting in the Chief of Staff being called in. These reports additionally state that the hospital’s intern arrangement with Meharry Medical College was not renewed, leaving the facility short staffed.
The letter to the VA is also signed by Congressmen Marsha Blackburn, Scott DesJarlais, Chuck Fleischmann, and Phil Roe. Black released the following statement:
“We all know that the VA is broken and is failing to properly serve veterans across the country, but it appears that our service members here in Tennessee have been forced to bear the brunt of this agency’s shameful mismanagement,” said Congressman Diane Black. “Multiple reports last year found that the Murfreesboro VA clinic had some of the longest wait times in the nation. Now, we have reason to believe that the facility is turning away patients and has not maintained the support staff necessary to deliver efficient care. As the mother, wife, and daughter of veterans I am outraged by this blatant disrespect for those who have worn the uniform of our country and I will not relent in my fight to get answers and demand accountability. We owe our veterans at least that much.”
Unfortunately, this is not the first time Congressman Black’s office has written the VA to demand better service on behalf of our veterans. In July 2013, the Congressman sent a letter to then-VA Secretary Eric Shinseki after inquiries to the agency from Congressman Black’s staff on behalf of area veterans were not promptly returned.
Read Congressman Black’s full letter to the VA HERE.
Congressman Diane Black represents Tennessee’s 6th Congressional District. She has been a registered nurse for more than 40 years and serves on the House Ways and Means and Budget Committees