Updated 2:05 p.m. ET, 8/26/2014
Charlotte (CNN) – President Barack Obama detailed Tuesday how his administration is attempting to rectify shortfalls in caring for war veterans, just as new threats abroad could require more sacrifices for American military families.
Speaking at the annual American Legion conference in Charlotte, Obama announced new executive actions aimed at improving mental health services and financial opportunities for servicemen and women, months after allegations of massive wrongdoing surfaced at the Department of Veterans Affairs.
By: Nelli Black, Scott Bronstein and Drew Griffin
(CNN) – Two veterans in a Veterans Affairs psychiatric facility languished for years without proper treatment, according to a scathing letter and report sent Monday to the White House by the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, or OSC.
In one case, a veteran with a service-connected psychiatric condition was in the facility for eight years before he received a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation; in another case, a veteran only had one psychiatric note in his medical chart in seven years as an inpatient at the Brockton, Massachusetts, facility.
(CNN) – The day before Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki resigned in May, nearly 25 senators signed a letter calling for him to step down amid a widening scandal over delayed medical care for vets.
In the weeks before that, lawmaker after outraged lawmaker rose to denounce systemic problems at the sprawling agency that provides medical and other care to more than 8.5 million veterans. Reports of "cooked books," dying patients on waiting lists, and a warped management culture made headlines.
Sen. Tom Coburn, a physician and three-time cancer survivor, says he knows firsthand “how frustrating the wait to see a doctor can be.”
That’s why, the Republican from Oklahoma says, President Barack Obama should nominate a new Veterans Affairs secretary with the “management skills, leadership ability and determination” to fix the problems at the scandal-plagued department.
Washington (CNN) – The Senate on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved broad reforms to the Department of Veterans Affairs less than two weeks after a health care scandal led to the resignation of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki.
The vote was 93 to 3.
(CNN) – The Justice Department asked the FBI to help review VA materials, a senior law enforcement official told CNN on Wednesday.
But the move is still short of a full department criminal probe in the Veterans Affairs waiting-list scandal, which dozens of politicians have been pressing for.
Washington (CNN) - When the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee missed the vote on his bill allowing veterans waiting for health care to access non-VA facilities, he got a do-over.
"It's on me," Miller told reporters Tuesday outside the House chamber, admitting that he was the reason the House was voting twice on his legislation.
(CNN) – Bipartisan Senate negotiators struck a deal on Thursday on a far-reaching bill to respond to the health care scandal at the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The crisis around veterans on long waiting lists to get medical appointments led to the resignation last week of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki.
Washington (CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama announced a new initiative at the White House on Wednesday to help end veteran homelessness across the country by the end of 2015.
The Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness is a call to action for mayors and other state and local leaders across the country to make a commitment to make sure all veterans in their communities have a roof over their heads.
Washington (CNN) - Nearly six in ten Americans give President Barack Obama a thumbs-down on how he is handling the Veterans Affairs controversy, according to a new national poll.
But a CNN/ORC International survey released Tuesday indicates that the scandal at VA hospitals doesn't seem to be affecting the President's overall approval rating, which remains at 43%, identical to the last CNN poll conducted a month ago. The survey also indicates that Obama scores some of his highest numbers on the environment and terrorism, two other issues in the spotlight this week.