Late Breaking News

VA Official Steps Down Amidst Scandal

USM By Sandra Basu
May 18, 2014

WASHINGTON—The VA announced that VA Under Secretary of Health Robert A. Petzel, MD, has stepped down from this position. In a written statement, VA Secretary Eric Shinseki said that he had “accepted the resignation of Dr. Robert Petzel.” “As we know from the veteran community, most veterans are satisfied with the quality of their VA health care, but we must do more to improve timely access to that care,” he said in a written statement. The announcement of the resignation came a day after Shinseki and Petzel appeared before the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs where they were questioned by lawmakers about allegations of patient deaths and treatment delays at a VA hospital in Phoenix. The VA IG is currently conducting an investigation of the allegations. The announcement of Petzel’s resignation was criticized by some who pointed out that Petzel was already scheduled to retire in 2014. “…President Obama has already announced his intention to nominate Petzel’s replacement, so characterizing this as a ‘resignation’ just doesn’t pass the smell test,” House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL) said in a written statement. American Legion National Commander Daniel M. Dellinger, who has called on the resignation of Shinseki and Petzel, said in a written statement that “this move by VA is not a corrective action, but a continuation of business as usual.” “Dr. Petzel was already scheduled to retire this year, so his resignation now really won’t make that much of a difference,” his statement said. According to his bio, Petzel was appointed VA under secretary for health on Feb. 18, 2010. Prior to this appointment, Petzel had served as VA’s acting principal deputy under secretary for health since May 2009.    

Related Articles

Despite Overall Longevity Trends, Mortality Increases for Schizophrenia Patients

Since the 1970s, mortality rates have declined, extending average lifespan by almost a decade.

No Link Found Between H. Pylori Infection, Unexplained Anemia

Despite limited evidence to support the practice, testing for Helicobacter pylori (Hp) infection is recommended for work-up of unexplained iron deficiency anemia (IDA).


U.S. Medicine Recommends


More From late breaking news

Late Breaking News

Despite Overall Longevity Trends, Mortality Increases for Schizophrenia Patients

Since the 1970s, mortality rates have declined, extending average lifespan by almost a decade.

Late Breaking News

No Link Found Between H. Pylori Infection, Unexplained Anemia

Despite limited evidence to support the practice, testing for Helicobacter pylori (Hp) infection is recommended for work-up of unexplained iron deficiency anemia (IDA).

Late Breaking News

Now Hear This: Otolaryngologist Leads Effort to Prevent Auditory Issues

Among those who are exposed to combat, it’s the weapons fire that does it. In the Navy, it’s the noise levels in engine rooms and on the decks of carriers.

Late Breaking News

Community Providers Unprepared to Serve Veterans Under Choice Program

As the debate about increasing access for veterans to community-based provider heats up, a serious problem has emerged: Few providers outside the VA health system appear to be prepared to meet the unique challenges of the veteran population.

Late Breaking News

Former VA Secretary Nominee Claims Allegations Against Him Are False

Veterans’ groups expressed concern last month regarding a “lack of permanent leadership at the department,” after Rear Adm. Ronny L. Jackson, MD, withdrew his name from consideration as VA secretary amid anonymous allegations of misconduct.

Facebook Comment

Subscribe to U.S. Medicine Print Magazine

U.S. Medicine is mailed free each month to physicians, pharmacists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and administrators working for Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Service.

Subscribe Now

Receive Our Email Newsletter

Stay informed about federal medical news, clinical updates and reports on government topics for the federal healthcare professional.

Sign Up