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Phoenix VA Gave $10 Million In Bonuses Over Last 3 Yrs

Meanwhile, from the Arizona Republic:

Phoenix VA gave out $10 mil in bonuses in last 3 years

By Craig Harris and Rob O’Dell | June 16, 2014

Newly released records show the Phoenix VA Health Care System paid out roughly $10 million in bonuses during the past three years, when some staff manipulated patient wait-time records to trigger bonuses as veterans died awaiting care. The Arizona Republic, after asking for bonus records at least 10 times since March, obtained the data Friday from the Department of Veteran Affairs under the federal Freedom of Information Act.

Speaking of stonewalling. But notice that this news is being uncovered by the plucky Arizona Republic. Not one out our news media giants, like the NYT or WP.

Bonus payouts increased significantly under Sharon Helman, who became director of the Phoenix VA in February 2012. She was placed on administrative leave last month with two other top staff members amid accusations of mismanagement stemming from the bonus scandal….

Ms. Helman had her own $8,495 bonus rescinded earlier this year.

Records show 4,188 bonuses were paid over the past three fiscal years to more than 2,150 employees, including doctors, nurses, administrators, secretaries and cleaners. Nearly 650 VA employees received a bonus in each of the three years. The VA has about 2,500 employees.

The bonus totals increased from $2.5 million in 2011, to $3.5 million in 2012 and $3.9 million in 2013. The figures obtained by The Republic are much larger than figures recently posted online by two watchdog groups.

"The VA employee recognition and awards program provides an entire range of rewards to recognize employees who make contributions that support goals and objectives across the facility," said Jean Schaefer, a Phoenix VA spokeswoman…

At first they were paid to lie about meeting their goals. Then they were paid more to keep quiet about lying about meeting their goals.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Tuesday, June 17th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

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