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Carnahan Meets with VA Secretary on Cochran

Brian Kelly
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WASHINGTON DC (KMOX)-After what Missouri Congressman Russ Carnahan says was a “frank discussion” about the problems at the John Cochran VA Medical Center, US Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki issued a statement calling the hospital’s latest sterilization issues an “isolated incident.”

The statement read, in part, “While we are never pleased when we have to suspend operations and inconvenience Veterans, this was an isolated incident with medical equipment at the John Cochran VAMC. We must not lose sight of the fact that a VA employee had the integrity and courage to identify the problem during  a routine exam and notified supervisors.  This was the responsible and right decision to assure that no veterans were put at risk. “

KMOX asked Carnahan what he thinks of that statement, “Frankly I’m not very impressed with that and it doesn’t really  track with the meeting that we had today.”

Carnahan says the problems at John Cochran make him, “Madder than just about anything he’s ever seen” in his years in public service.

Carnahan is calling for a top to bottom review of the facility and a “Comprehensive and bold turnaround plan.”

He says that ‘bold turnaround plan’ should include, “Putting a very strong management team in place. It’s not my role to prescribe what that is but I told the secretary we’re from the ‘show-me state’, we want to see action. Talking about this and piecemeal approaches aren’t going to cut it anymore.”

Inspectors were at the hospital Thursday morning. Hospital officials will be holding a press conference Thursday afternoon.

Copyright KMOX Radio

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