Local VA gets good marks for treatment

Many veterans offer praise for the quality of care and the facilities at the Asheville Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Read more
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Leroy M Cloer

Princeton, NJ

#1 Mar 18, 2007
Yes tell me somewhere else you can get the treatment that the VA Hospital in Asheville, NC gives and I will go there. So far I don't know of any. Toby Brown PA is the one I see and as far a I am concerened she is the best. Where else can you get blood results back on an hour or less, or any other test results as fast as they do. I sure get the treatment I need. Leroy M. Cloer
OIF Purple Heart Vet

Greer, SC

#3 Mar 19, 2007
I received treatment for PTSD at the Asheville VA after I returned from Iraq wounded. The staff and volunteers were excellent and helped me in more ways than one. These people made me feel like I was truly home and I will never forget what they did for this Iraqi Vet!
AF Vet

United States

#4 Mar 19, 2007
I had an emergency appendectomy performed by the Oteen VA Hospital about 5 years ago. The quality and professionalism exhibited by the staff at the VA was excellent. I never once felt like I was receiving second class treatment. A salute to all the fine personel at our local VA Hospital.
Athame9999

Asheville, NC

#5 Mar 19, 2007
Long story short....my father died due to inadequate care from VA doctors. Constant misdiagnosis, over-prescribing medications, horrible experience with one of the Heart ward PA's..the list goes on and on.

It's appaling that those who served our country are treated so poorly by the government.

Since: Dec 06

United States

#6 Mar 19, 2007
mtnrambo wrote:
The VA, your second chance to die for your country...
I'm sorry to hear that you have had a bad experience with the VA. I've been served by both the West Palm Beach VA and the Asheville VA and while the Asheville VA is fantastic, the West Palm VA also gave good service. The staff at the hospital works under extremely difficult conditions. Increased workload, insufficient staff and funds and they handle it really well. Of course there's the occasional vet that comes in and demands immediate attention and complains about everything from A to Z. There would be no pleasing him in any manner.
Martin Malloy

United States

#7 Mar 19, 2007
The Asheville VA hospital has given me excellent care.

“BEAT A PAIR OF JACK'S & A FOX ”

Since: Feb 07

ASHEVILLE

#8 Mar 19, 2007
Athame9999 wrote:
Long story short....my father died due to inadequate care from VA doctors. Constant misdiagnosis, over-prescribing medications, horrible experience with one of the Heart ward PA's..the list goes on and on.
It's appaling that those who served our country are treated so poorly by the government.
I'M SORRY YOU HAD A BAD EXPERIENCE, BUT I WOULDN'T GO ANY WHERE ELSE.
MY LATE WIFE USE TO GO WITH ME TO THE V.A. AN HAS ALWAYS SAID THAT SHE WISHES SHE COULD USE THE SERVICE'S I GET OUT THEIR.

SHE WAS ALWAYS TRYING TO CON THEM INTO A MEDICAL OPINION.
Old68

Asheville, NC

#9 Mar 19, 2007
I have nothing but praise for the Oteen VA. Dr. Paul Riggs is outstanding - better than any civilian doctor I've ever had. About three years ago my routine annual physical showed that my PSA had increased sharply in one years. A biopsy confirmed that I had aggressive prostate cancer; and within a month, I had it removed. I did have a minor subsequent complication several months later, but it was quickly and professionally handled. However, they are not perfect - the phone system for making appointments needs improvement.
anonymous

AOL

#10 Mar 19, 2007
Excellent article. However, as a long-time VA employee I feel that the employee satisfaction rate may be tainted by the fact that employees fear for their jobs and may not be honest when being polled. Budget cuts are taking a hard hit on the nursing department in particular and we see cuts in housekeeping as well. The hospital looks very dirty at times, especially when no inspection is pending. Staffing has been hard hit, morale is very low, regardless of what your poll shows. The inpatient areas of the hospital are largely staffed by young, inexperienced nurses as many of the more experienced ones are are either leaving nursing looking into other options.
I remain anonymous for obvious reasons.

“resident Librul wingnut”

Since: Feb 07

Greenville, SC

#11 Mar 19, 2007
From the article:
The VA undoubtedly will be getting even more veterans to treat — and funding is always tight.

“The VA is chronically and, I would argue, dangerously underfunded,” said Paul Rieckoff, director of the New York-based Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, a group that supports veterans of the war on terror, in a January interview with the Citizen-Times.

Rieckoff said the agency needs an additional $4 billion to do its job and needs to become proactive to handle the needs of new veterans, especially mental health needs. Pendergrass said the local VA’s funding actually has steadily increased over recent years.
A steady increase is not enough to compensate for a landslide of need. Write or call Congressman Shuler and ask him to support funding for healing the victims of war rather than making more of them.
Bruce Richardson

United States

#12 Mar 19, 2007
63 year old Nam vet. I have found the care at Asheville's VA medical center to be as good as any medical center or hospital that I have had the misfortune to have needed. As far as the attitude of the folks who make the place work for us...they are great! I should also point out that if one of my fellow veterans goes there displaying a bad attitude or a good attitude, our caretakers there will react in a like manner. We all need to remember that every one of us has easy days and hard days, up days and not so up days. Remember veterans, they are there for us. So, let's show our appreciation by being understanding and thankful for their service to us. Just my opinion.
Tommy Ginn in Sylva

Marion, KS

#13 Mar 19, 2007
I have nothing but praise for our local VA. I have never experienced those problems pointed out in this article.
ChasLind

Bellflower, CA

#14 Mar 19, 2007
I can't speak to the VA hospital at Oteen, but I have nothing but praise for the Durham VA Medical Center! Of course, it helps to use doctors from Duke Hospital, just across the street!!

Since: Feb 07

Buncombe/Henderson border

#15 Mar 19, 2007
The care I've received here is tops from staff that really cares despite me being a less than perfect patient. Kudos to the VA.
vet

United States

#16 Mar 19, 2007
anonymous wrote:
Excellent article. However, as a long-time VA employee I feel that the employee satisfaction rate may be tainted by the fact that employees fear for their jobs and may not be honest when being polled. Budget cuts are taking a hard hit on the nursing department in particular and we see cuts in housekeeping as well. The hospital looks very dirty at times, especially when no inspection is pending. Staffing has been hard hit, morale is very low, regardless of what your poll shows. The inpatient areas of the hospital are largely staffed by young, inexperienced nurses as many of the more experienced ones are are either leaving nursing looking into other options.
I remain anonymous for obvious reasons.
You are so correct. Infrastructure of hospital is in decrepit condition. Don't wash your hands, it will scald the living hell out of you. Huge number of staff have been in place for 2-3 or even 4 decades. Why retire (or care)when you can ilk by and reap big longevity pay.

Also: Does the VA condone smoking? Everyone is smoking everywhere. Smoking shelters are HUGE.
And heavily staffed by workers. The smell will turn your stomach.
I am sure they will get another cruise through inspection with a team of staff promoting all the good patient approval marks. Too bad the director does not have a on-line suggestion box.
Sad Sack

United States

#18 Mar 19, 2007
The front door has been broke for months.
The check in process through is OK.
A visit to the upper floors is a flashback to the 1970's.
You're right about smoking. At every entrance. Guess the government don't have to follow suit with the other hospitals.
The abandoned hospital buildings across the street are very spooky.They seem to have been empty forever now.

“RadicalDudette”

Since: Feb 07

Location hidden

#19 Mar 19, 2007
mtnrambo wrote:
The VA, your second chance to die for your country...
That is sick!

“RadicalDudette”

Since: Feb 07

Location hidden

#20 Mar 19, 2007
mtnrambo wrote:
<quoted text>
Actually, the VA in Oteen is pretty pathetic when you see the inside workings of the complex...
As far as the surgery end, I cannot say...
As far as the mental end, and the pyshchiatric end, I can only tell you from what I've seen, not experienced...
I had a Sam Elliot look a like helper that smoked, we were over there working and " Sam " made his way out to the smoking area... Those guys out there smoking were on him like vultures, wanting to know " his story "...
Don't paint a big pic for the VA... Seen it, done it, did it, still fing doing it...
Nothing in life is free... Maybe its time ya'll realised that...
BTW, did you serve in the military? NO!

So you can make ugly comments about the VA Oteen
Medical Center when there are other hospitals in
this entire WNC region, including MethDowell, Missions Hospital, Angel Hospital, etc. that have just as many or worse problems.

It is usually the staff! Because the CEO is the dicktator! And the little peons of supervisors kiss
ass and ORDER thier emplyees to WORK, WORK, WORK!

And if you drop dead from exhaustion, it is an
UNEXCUSED ABSENCE.
Henderson

United States

#21 Mar 19, 2007
Don't park behind the VA Hospital. I walk with two canes and you will get slap ran over.
MurphyMobile; do you comment on every subject?
Are you a veteran?
mtnrambo evidently has been there, have you?
What the hell is a dudette? Part man?
sombrero

Asheville, NC

#22 Mar 20, 2007
David,
The note you sent to your employees is exactly what Anonymous was talking about when he/she mentioned being fearful of their jobs, or satisfaction rates being tainted.
Anonymous writes an opinion here, and less than an hour later you chastise him/her. And you do it with a letter to your entire department, and accuse that person of being dishonest. Those are the heavy-handed tactics that serve to lower our moral, make us afraid to speak our minds...big brother is watching and waiting to pounce.
Anonymous may be totally wrong about the budget, but you are totally wrong in presuming he/she is referencing those anonymous surveys we take from time to time. He/she is obviously talking about the opinions in the article. How convenient of you to confuse the two.
And you want to lecture us about honesty.

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