238,000 US Veterans Died Waiting for Healthcare

238,000 US Veterans Died Waiting for Healthcare
238,000 US Veterans Died Waiting for Healthcare

A leaked document showed nearly one-third of the 847,000 veterans in the US Department of Veteran Affairs’ backlog died while waiting for treatment, amounting to more than 238,000 patients, according to documents obtained by the Huffington Post.

The VA maintains that the number is so large because it has no mechanism to purge the list of dead applicants and that some of the veterans may have died years ago, RT reported.

VA spokeswoman Walinda West said some people on the list may never have completed an application, or could be using other insurance.

The documents came from a VA program specialist, Scott Davis, who has been a whistleblower on the department’s failings in the past. He disputed West’s answers, saying an incomplete application would not have made it onto the VA’s pending list.

The documents also showed poor recordkeeping at the agency. In one instance, 2.35 million veterans, whose records amounted to about 13.5% of the 17.4 million records total, died, but did not have their date of death recorded in the enrollment system. Yet dates of death were recorded in a different information database.

 Costly Afghan War

America’s war in Afghanistan is costing taxpayers roughly $4 million an hour, despite the US President Barack Obama administration’s drawdown of troops leaving only 10,000 soldiers in the country, new documents showed.

More than $700 billion have been spent on the Afghan war since the George W. Bush administration authorized the invasion in 2001, including more than $35 billion in fiscal year 2015, according to figures from the National Priorities Project, a non-profit, non-partisan federal budget research group.

The initial budget for the Afghan war was over $20 billion for 2001/02. The budget dropped to $14 billion over the next two years as spending was shifted to the war in Iraq.

Expenditures on the Afghan war took a back seat to Iraq war spending before ballooning to more than $100 billion in 2010 when the cost of the Iraq war began to decline.

Spending in Afghanistan continued to top $100 billion annually until 2013, when it began falling by increments of $10 billion, finally reaching the current budget of $35 billion.