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    HomeWorldVA Police Shortages Leave Medical Center Patients, Staff Vulnerable, Watchdog Finds

    VA Police Shortages Leave Medical Center Patients, Staff Vulnerable, Watchdog Finds

    VA Police Shortages Leave Medical Center Patients, Staff Vulnerable, Watchdog Finds

    Staffing shortages at Veterans Affairs Police Services and security deficiencies at Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers put the facilities, their staffs and patients at risk for theft, assault or other serious crimes, the VA's Office of the Inspector General has found.

    The VA's “open campus” concept for its facilities, which fosters an environment where veterans, visitors and the public are welcome and have easy access to care, increases security staffing requirements to reduce the risk of individuals entering a hospital or clinic with malicious intent.

    But a review published Wednesday of 70 VA medical centers nationwide by the department's top watchdog found that police shortages often were the reason that facilities failed to meet security regulations.

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    The VA OIG audit, which involved 150 inspectors conducting unannounced visits to 70 facilities over a three-day time frame, found that the average vacancy rate for police officer positions in those hospitals was 33%, and at some facilities, as high as 63%.

    Across the entire Veterans Health Administration System, which encompasses 171 medical centers and 1,100 clinics, more than one-third of hospitals reported a severe shortage of police officers last year.

    The understaffing contributes to situations where public entryways aren't manned and security cameras aren't monitored…

    Continue Reading This Article At Military.com

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