Rubio, Senators Call for Transparency from Tampa VA after Nurse Failed to Meet Standards

Rubio, Senators Call for Transparency from Tampa VA after Nurse Failed to Meet Standards

Jackson Bakich
Jackson Bakich
December 18, 2023

After a veterans hospital in Tampa prohibited a nurse from seeing patients due to the practitioner’s inability to meet standards, Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and his cohorts in the upper chamber have questions for the Veterans Affairs (VA) regarding the situation.

The event occurred at James A. Haley Veterans Hospital Tampa (Tampa VA).

In a letter to VA Secretary Denis McDonough, Sen. Rubio and his colleagues were concerned that the VA failed to notify the proper chain of command in a timely fashion.

“We are concerned that the VA did not notify our offices or initiate a three-month clinical review of the situation until November 2023,” the senators wrote. “Florida’s veterans deserve the highest level of service and transparency about their health care, and we expect the VA to act expeditiously to notify veterans about the situation and the steps the VA is taking to rectify the situation.”

They continued by adding that they believe many patients could’ve been affected due to the “lack of proper care” from the hospital.

“We are additionally concerned that the clinical review period to redress this issue does not span a long enough time frame to review possible impacts on deceased patients. The nurse practitioner was employed by the Tampa VA for 21 years, yet the clinical review period only spans through October 2021. We are concerned that there may be deceased patients outside the purview of the current clinical review impacted by the lack of proper care,” said Sen. Rubio and the lawmakers.

They requested that the government agency demonstrate documentation of the “overall health and wellbeing” that could’ve been impacted by the provider at the time.

The senators concluded, “Veterans put their trust in the VA to receive high quality health care from attentive and professional medical providers. When the providers fail to meet these standards, veterans deserve timely communication about steps the VA is taking to address their health care needs and concerns going forward.”

Rubio was joined by Senator Rick Scott (R-FL) as well as U.S. Representatives Scott Franklin (R-FL), Greg Steube (R-FL), Anna Paulina Luna (R-FL), Laurel Lee (R-FL), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Vern Buchanan (R-FL), and Kathy Castor (D-FL).

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Jackson Bakich

Jackson Bakich

Born in Orlando but raised in Lake County, Florida, Jackson Bakich is currently a senior at Florida State University. Growing up in the sunshine state, Bakich co-hosted the political talk radio show "Lake County Roundtable" (WLBE) and was a frequent guest for "Lake County Sports Show" (WQBQ). Currently, he is the Sports Editor of the FSView and the co-host of "Tomahawk Talk" (WVFS), a sports talk radio program covering Florida State athletics in Tallahassee.

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