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01 March 2007

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Jay

Sir:

It would seem the Army in it's infinite wisdom has chosen LTG Kiley as the replacement...Screw up move up again. MSC branch is a very cutthroat branch anyway.

PSD

Jay--
I just read the same thing. At first I was so excited that Weightman got the axe. Then I read that Kiley's at least temporarily replacing him....geez, this stuff was definitely happening on Kiley's watch. What the hell is wrong with the Army? Where's the accountability? How long before all the heads roll? Makes me glad my son and grandson are Navy and Marine and would be sent to Bethesda if they were wounded in Iraq.

Brian Hart

LTG Kiley was responsible for the screw ups at Walter Reed years before Weightman showed up.

Specifically I would point out Mrs Young (Congressman Young's wife) who was effectively booted off campus by Kiley for advocating for better treatment. See Thursday's WaPo article on the subject.

Now I had friends there in 2004 and they told me that the only person plugging for them was Mrs. Young, so to see her bash Kiley in the WaPo tells me loads about this situation. He needs to go.

As an aside, Joint Commission (JCAHO) showed up this week for an unannounced visit. If they find mold, rats, lost records, poor patient tracking, they may be obligated to pull Walter Reeds accreditation. This is huge. If WR loses that then the entire leadership chain will need to go.... This story isn't over. Watch Joint Commission its independent (not army) and can be quite demanding when needed.

J

Colonel,

looks like lg kiley is also now on the chopping block.

smoke

Evidently, Bldg 18 and processing of outpatients falls under the jurisdiction of the Medical Hold Unit at WR. Only the Army Times article has mentioned this unit specifically. The article mentions, without further explanation, that 120 permanent duty soldiers will arrive by mid-March "to take control of the Medical Hold Unit." So then, who has been running and staffing this Unit until now?

A few internet sites report soldiers having trouble with Medical Hold Units elsewhere also. Who knows more about these units, the chain of command, staffing, etc?

anna missed

What I dont get is LTG Kiley lives right across the street from the billets -- he must have been to busy to ever walk over there and look in on the guys -- pretty outrageous in itself.

Peter Eggenberger

Weightman, Kiley and presumably others should have "done right", of course. They are, I suspect, intelligent and think of themselve as decent people. Why didn't they do right? I suspect because they were/are in a system that prefers indifference to doing right, while occasionally punishing anyone publicly exposed for doing wrong, or for negligence. So, they are punished to a standing ovation from all right thinking people, while the system remains unchanged and new Weightmans and Kileys are lined up to replace them.

JfM

This is about the appearance of fixing the problems. I doubt that dumping the two-star for a three-star who already bears a lion’s share of the morass from his former watch in the same billet will do much more than put lipstick on the pig. We’ve heard the arguments that MG Weightman was unfortunately caught in trying to prepare WRAMC to stand down as per the BRAC and yet keep the care levels high enough to avoid this adverse exposure. No excuse. Horse hockey! There may well have been challenging fiscal restraints forces for Weightman to overcome but that’s why he has two stars and a reserved parking place. No excuse. The hallmark of officership is the willingness and ability to stand and draw fire from all quarters when the officer witnesses a wrong.

Again, from our very first steps as an officer, we are imbued with the obligation of responsibility. The commander is responsible for everything his/her unit does or fails to do. Things could have been fixed if the command had wanted them fixed. But the command had to know of the problems. MG Weightman, if he didn’t know of the condition-should have known. No excuse. Then, armed with the ground truth, MG Weightman should have marched down the E Ring kicking doors with a reinforced platoon of his wounded charges. No excuse.

Sam

Pat is absolutely correct when he says that the Army SurgGen and Sec of the Army should go. As I previously posted, those who set resources set priorities must be accountable for the results of their resource allocation decisions). It appears that resources were not allocated to long term care (outpatient care and housing for soldiers who must undergo outpatient care).

BTW – this type of medical logic is not isolated to the Army, DoD, or VA for that matter. My daughter was recently hit by a pickup that ran a red light. While she was in the hospital she received wonderful care and attention. As soon as she was mobile she was told to find a place to recuperate. Rehabilitation hospitals did not want to take her (insurance problems) so she is in the home of friends. She must impose on friends for transportation, food, and lodging.

I think she is getting better care than the guys at WR because she is with friends. No one is in charge of those poor soldiers. A medical holding detachment, by definition, is a personnel accounting organization which may run a barracks. They may, or may not, have the mission of transportation to and from treatment. Sort of a medical limbo with the hospital scheduling care and treatment and the medical holding detachment housing, feeding, and accounting for soldiers. Did you read the WashPost article about 6:00 AM wake-up calls? How would you like to have to get up without assistance minus an arm or leg to clean your quarters? This is BS.

Sorry for the rant.

Annie Burns

History repeats itself. Try reading THE VIETNAM VETERAN: A HISTORY OF NEGLECT by Congressman David Bonior. As a young librarian, I was privleged to so some research for the book, and felt so gratified that "things would change."

linda

it's unfortunate there is no corresponding action that can be taken against rep young and mrs rumsfeld -- both of whom specifically inquired about the treatment and did nothing.

and, frankly, i'm not so willing to let off the hook those eager to please teevee chattermonkeys who lacked the curiosity to dig deeper than the escorted tours provided by hospital officials for their 'reports'.

Dick Durata

Weightman is the fall guy. I suspect the matter will be dropped in the press now.

kim

what i don't get is, what took so long.
i don't recall the source, but i read about this problem, online, at least a year ago, i'm thinking 2 or 3. so there's been "public awareness" for a long time, and those responsible should long ago have been working to either fix the problem or adequately cover their butts.
one would think.

Will

"Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Harvey had resigned. But senior defense officials speaking on condition of anonymity said Gates had asked Harvey to leave. Gates was displeased that Harvey, after firing Maj. Gen. George Weightman as the head of Walter Reed, chose to name as Weightman's temporary replacement another general whose role in the controversy was still in question. "


LA Times News Article

blowback

From CNN via TPM

"Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey has resigned in the wake of the Walter Reed hospital scandal, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Friday."

TR Stone

This is one of those unique situations, where no matter what political persuasion you have, you are offended by the disclosure and the response.

This will not go away anytime soon!

Jim Borland

Re: Brian Hart's post concerning the upcoming JCAHO inspection. WRAMC's webpage states the current and recent past situation: "Today WRAMC, fully accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, continues to service the military community...."
If the problems have been around for a while then the JCAHO should have found and reported on them already. I suspect their reports only go to the institutions inspected and the customers of hospitals have a very difficult time viewing the reports. The JCAHO website doesn't give access to the reports. I have visited offices and seen actual inspection reports of a JCAHO "accredited" hospital and they can be disturbing.The WRAMC publicly posts its JCAHO "scores" based on surveys http://www.wramc.amedd.army.mil/patientinfo/reportcard.htm and from these one would conclude that the customers are satisfied. The usual military and JCAHO inspection regimes are apparently inadequate and while they may serve the institutions' PR needs they do not adequately serve the community. Time for the WaPo to find out what JCAHO already knew and what the Congressional Committees knew.

W. Patrick Lang

Peter

All human systems are fallible, but for every general relieved and disgraced there will be a hundred generals who will be more careful to do their duty. pl

Patrick  Henry

Amen..

Col..you have been ON POINT with everything you said about this..What SHOULD BE DONE..

BEING DONE..

You said TOP DOWN ACCOUNTABILITY..

DONE & BEING DONE..

Good Call Colonial..
You Certainly Have earned a "STAR "in My Opinion..

and thank You for sharing Your Life AND EXPERTISE...with those of Us who Appreciate you and your Web. Site..

I am glad to see certain Positive Changes going on..Ones that to now You seem to be Appoving of..

Its all about PROBLEM SOLVING..and like You..I Also like to see problems being solved..I think Most everyone who Posts here Are or want to be Problem solvers here..

I think the "EVENT" is Big enough for ALL OF US..

Tim Jenkins

I've been in Army as a medic. I know LTG Kiley personally and disagree with the fact that he is pompous. Yes the Commander is responsible, but he could not know every little maintenance problem going on, he does not deserve to be removed from his position.

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