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Phoenix VA fires 3 top execs over wait times

The headquarters of the Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington, D.C.

The Phoenix Veterans’ Affairs Health Care System fired three of its top-ranking executives after Americans around the nation rallied in outrage over the system’s wait times for patients.

The Washington Examiner reported the fired three were Associate Director Lance Robinson, Chief of Health Administration Service Brad Curry and Chief of Staff Darren Deering.

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“We have an obligation to veterans and the American people to take appropriate accountability actions as supported by evidence,” VA Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson said, in a statement. “While this process took far too long, the evidence supports these removals and sets the stage for moving forward.”

Gibson said the three were “negligent [in] performance of duties,” the Hill reported.

He also said they failed “to provide effective oversight” for the veterans who came to the facility seeking treatment, and didn’t make sure the patients were scheduled for their proper medical appointments in a timely manner.

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Rep. Jeff Miller, chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, said the firings were a welcome action.

“This decision is the right one for veterans and taxpayers,” he said, in a statement. “Gibson is right in saying the process took ‘far too long.'”

Reports started surfacing in April 2014 about the Phoenix VA maintaining a secret waiting list to conceal the amount of medical care for veterans that was delayed. Up to 40 patients are believed to have died while waiting for care from the facility.