McMorris Rodgers, Murray Secure VA Commitment to Hold Town Halls for Veterans in Eastern Washington

Events Agreed to After Months of Frustration and Confusion, Veterans Harmed by Health Record System

Jul 22, 2022
Press
Veterans

Washington, D.C. –  Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) today announced they have secured a commitment from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to hold two town hall events for veterans in Eastern Washington later this year.

At the lawmakers’ request, the VA has agreed to have a meeting in both Spokane and Walla Walla to hear directly from veterans concerned about long wait times and limited access to care, patient harm caused by the new electronic health record (EHR) system, rumors about reduction of services, and any other issue they are facing related to the agency.

“We are pleased the VA has agreed to hear directly from veterans in Eastern Washington and answer their questions,” said Rodgers and Murray. “For months, we have heard from veterans and providers frustrated by the new electronic health record system and the rumors of services being reduced at the facilities they rely on for care. It is imperative that VA’s Central Office leadership understands the struggles veterans and front-line providers deal with every day at these facilities. The botched roll-out of the new electronic health record, and years of attempts to cut care and services, has undermined trust and made providers’ jobs immeasurably harder. Department leadership needs to hear directly from veterans about these issues and then act immediately to implement real solutions.”

Earlier this year, the two lawmakers rejected the VA’s recommendation to reduce services at the Jonathan M. Wainwright VA Medical Center in Walla Walla, and they took action to prevent them from being implemented. You can find a full timeline of Cathy’s actions to hold the VA accountable for the ongoing issues with the new electronic health record system here.

The town hall events will be held in October and November. More information regarding date, time, and format for the events will be made public as it becomes available.

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