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War Veterans With Traumatic Brain Injury Pay the Price of Waste at the VA, Says Dr. Robert Van Boven
Date:11/6/2008

plagiarism, lied about work-product not submitted, and collected $107,000 over nine months while working on-site one day per week but billing 35 hours per week.

The OIG also confirmed that senior management failed to act despite knowledge of the serious nature of the disclosures. The OIG report concluded, "We found no written evidence that CTVHCS leadership requested an accounting of BIRL expenditures following [Dr. Van Boven's] October 15, 2007 letter or otherwise investigated the appropriateness of BIRL expenditures."

The Chief of Staff (COS) at CTVHCS testified that he was clearly aware of these disclosures, yet he failed to act. At a VA hearing, the COS stated that Dr. Van Boven "expressed concern that [an investigator's] research was ill-conceived, and he [the investigator] was making excessive use of a consultant, and that the consultant could be padding his hours, and a bunch of things." Instead of remedies, ultimately electronic erasure and retraction of the disclosures were requested by management. Further, senior management's role in these improprieties went unchecked, suggesting a failure of internal policing of wrong-doing and condoning of such behavior.

"In sum, my disclosures of waste, fraud, and mismanagement were shown to have merit by the VA OIG," said Van Boven. "However, one of the most egregious of these transgressions is the abuse of power and suppression of disclosures of violations by senior management."

"As we give tribute to those who have 'borne the battle' in service to our country this Veteran's Day, I call on the VA to commit to ensuring responsible and accountable use of taxpayer dollars to serve and help our veterans lead productive and fulfilling lives."


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SOURCE Dr. Robert Van Boven, M.D., D.D.S.
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