VA action takes way too long

It has been two years since a whistleblower revealed military veterans were being forced by the Phoenix veterans hospital to wait months for health care they needed. Some died while they waited.

After the revelations, some Department of Veterans Affairs officials tried to cover up the wait-list scandal. Just one of them was fired.

Only last week – two years later – did the VA fire three more officials from the Phoenix hospital in connection with the scandal.

Deputy VA Secretary Sloan Gibson told reporters he was “disappointed” it took so long to fire the officials. Obviously, every American veteran of military service is owed an apology for that inexcusable delay.

But something else Gibson said ought to raise red flags. He told reporters the firings should help the VA “move past” the scandal.

No. Absolutely not.

Though the wait-list scandal centered on Phoenix, investigators found evidence of similar abuses at a few other VA locations. And there is reason to believe more than four people were involved in what happened in Arizona.

So no, it is not time to “move past” the scandal.

It is time for Congress to demand that investigation of the scandal continue until each and every VA official involved in cheating veterans out of the health care to which they are entitled is fired – and prosecuted. Belatedly throwing three more officials to the wolves should not get other guilty VA officials off the hook.