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The PJ Tatler

Bridget Johnson


May 10, 2013 - 6:35 am

Two Veteran Affairs senior health care managers for Southwest Pennsylvania received large bonuses despite a deadly outbreak of legionella that spread through Pittsburgh’s VA hospitals over the past two years.

Michael Moreland, Director of Veterans Integrated Service Network 4, received at least two bonuses totaling more than $70,000.  Terry Wolf, Director of the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, received a $12,924 bonus.

The VA Office of the Inspector General attributed the outbreak to lax management oversight, some of which of which was observed before and during the period for which the bonuses were awarded, noted Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.).

“The VA has not yet announced its FY 2012 performance awards. Therefore Congress does not know if Mr. Moreland or Ms. Wolf were slated to receive performance bonuses for that year. However the department has deferred FY 2012 performance awards for some VA Senior Executives, including some in the Veterans Health Administration’s Southeast and Pennsylvania medical networks, pending further review,” Toomey wrote to Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki.

“Based on your nomination, Mr. Moreland received the Presidential Distinguished Rank Award. The award ceremony took place three days after the VA OIG issued its report on Apr. 23 that found systemic failures at the Pittsburgh VA. The White House approved the award in Nov. 2012, i.e. the same month as VA’s legionella notification.”

Shinseki has been asked to provide Congress with the rationale for FY 2011 performance bonuses for Moreland and Wolf.

“When did the VA become aware of the Legionella outbreak and what bearing did this knowledge have on their performance bonuses for FY 2011?” Toomey asked Shinseki. “To what extent was your continued support of Mr. Moreland’s Presidential Distinguished Rank Award informed by your knowledge of the legionella outbreak?”

The Pittsburgh outbreak sickened 22 veterans and killed at least five of them.

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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why do any governmemt workers get bonuses? if its rational is to get the best workers away from private sector jobs, we seem to be doing a pee poor job of it.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Still takes Vets 4 hours to get registered (triage)! Getting a doctors appointment? HAH! Haaa! 3 months, if one is lucky! OH! Getting some MEDS? they're twice to three times the same item at Rite Aid, CVS, or Walgreens. Have an emergency? Why, go to the emergency waiting room, talk to a disinterested attendant sitting disinterestingly behind a bank of computers...they'll be happy to check your records, see if a doctor is available and schedule your EMERGENCY appointment within the next 3 or five hours. OH! If you don't get to see the doctor that day, come back on Monday...the VA Hospital is closed on the weekends. There's more...can't even imagine the disgraceful, distasteful humiliating process a VET needing special care (like say, a prosthesis) would be like...A Forrest Gump-type nightmare! Pray. Amen.
Don't even talk about charges and over charges...the IRS-Veteran Administration takes all monies due direclty from ANY ASSET OWNED!!!Directly. Period. Humiliation heaped upon humiliation. God Bless America.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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