Nearly 100,000 veterans currently are receiving prescriptions for both tranquilizers and narcotic painkillers from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, a potentially deadly combination that is explicitly discouraged by agency guidelines.
Our investigation disclosing skyrocketing opiate prescriptions and retaliatory management practices at a VA medical center in Wisconsin touched off a variety of federal and state government investigations.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospital in Tomah, Wisconsin, notorious for its skyrocketing rate of opiate prescriptions, has contributed to dozens of tragedies that have affected people other than the veterans taking the drugs.
In this episode of Reveal, we look at the power of a single photo, a VA doctor accused of handing out opiates to veterans like “candy” and surgery patients who got screwed out of legitimate medical hardware.
Meet the “Candy Man” – the chief of staff at a VA hospital in Tomah, Wisconsin. Hospital staff members say Dr. David Houlihan “hands out narcotics like they’re candy.”
A preliminary report by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs revealed that runaway opiate prescriptions and a culture of fear created by hospital leadership compromised patient care and harmed the staff at the Tomah, Wisconsin, VA.
Mario DeSanctis, director of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospital in Tomah, Wisconsin, said his performance bonus was “warranted and justified” even though the facility was being investigated over runaway painkiller prescriptions and patient overdoses.
The Department of Veterans Affairs’ inspector general’s office has publicly released its scathing report documenting runaway painkiller prescriptions and abuse of administrative authority at the VA hospital in Tomah, Wisconsin, nearly a year after it closed the case.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs investigated problems at the Tomah VA Medical Center for two years but never released an official report of its findings, leaving some to wonder whether the agency is capable of policing itself.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs said it will conduct an internal investigation after a CIR report documented opiate overprescription and other issues at the Tomah VA hospital.