Department of Veterans Affairs Under Fire for Knowingly Hiring Doctors With Past Malpractice Claims

The Department of Veterans Affairs has come under fire recently for the illegal hiring of doctors who have been discovered to have past malpractice lawsuits.

Federal laws bar the Veterans Affairs agency from hiring physicians who have had their medical license revoked by a state board. Even if they have a valid license in a separate state, they are still barred from working for Veterans Affairs.

In one situation, John Henry Schneider, a neurosurgeon, accrued more than 12 malpractice claims which included cases where he was alleged to have made mistakes that caused maiming and paralysis in patients. In some instances, he was even alleged to have made errors that resulted in death.

Veterans Affairs hired him in April and he's already racked up several complaints from patients and their families, according to the IndyStar.

The situation with Schneider is far from being a singular case. A VA hospital in Oklahoma is accused of knowingly hiring a psychiatrist who had been sanctioned for sexual misconduct in the past. Per internal documents, that doctor went on to sleep with one of his patients at the VA hospital.

Down in Louisiana, a VA clinic hired a psychiatrist who had past felony convictions. They eventually fired him after determining that he was a “direct threat to others.”

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In Schneider's case, while they were prepared to fire him, opted to resign from the VA hospital instead. A representative for the agency called his hiring the result of “incorrect guidance” from agency officials.

“We will take the same prompt removal action with any other improper hires we discover,” they added.