Monthly inspections ordered for VA medical centers

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Memphis VA hospital will now be under the microscope, scrutinized to make sure veterans get quality care.

The acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs announced Wednesday that all VA centers will undergo monthly in person inspections.

It's all about making sure staff scheduling policies are being followed and patients are getting timely care.

Following reports of long wait times and even deaths at VA centers across the country, local vets say they are glad to see changes being made.

Anne Hatfield served in the Navy and knows how crucial it is for veterans to receive good healthcare.

"All of us should never forget the sacrifice veterans make when they serve," she said.

So she said she is relieved to hear Washington is committed to making improvements of VA centers across the country.

"This is being handled in a proactive way, and I believe any underlying problems will be pinpointed, will be corrected," Hatfield said.

Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Sloan Gibson released a statement saying all VA centers will have monthly in person inspections into staff scheduling by their directors. Here in Memphis, that would be Diane Knight.

A girl whose father works as Knight's administrative assistant said she hopes this will take some of the heat off of the Memphis VA.

"It wasn't this hospital that was being scrutinized," Breanna Harper said. "So, I think the inspections will help a great deal."

However, Andre Moore works at the hospital and admits there are problems when it comes to staffing.

"They may be overworked, tired," he said of employees. "I know we're shorthanded."

He is hopeful these inspections will lead to improvements not only for staff, but also veterans.

"They don't need anybody or anything holding them back from what they deserve," Moore said.