There is not much in the world lower than pond scum. May I suggest that the politicians and administrators who knew the extent of the problems in the Veterans Administration and let them fester are, in fact, lower than pond scum.
They, who feed at the public trough, many for their whole working lives, allow American heroes to suffer what they would never accept for themselves. They now are presented with a chance to redeem themselves. Just moments ago, General Shinseki resigned. He had allowed five years to be wasted. His resignation had to happen. Congress must make sure his replacement is a skilled administrator, used to dealing with a worldwide organization. He must build a staff of competent health care administrators. Lose all the political hacks and self servers. The veterans deserve better.
Give the veterans healthcare cards so that they may get care anyplace that is able to provide it. Perhaps a low co-pay would be appropriate if they choose private medical treatment. But it must be very low. These cards would ease the burden and streamline the system.
Have the VA facilities do what they can do best for the vets. Things like wound care, prosthetics, rehabilitation, and the treatment of PTSD would be prime examples. These are beyond the capacity of most community hospitals. In this way, the advancement in the treatment of problems specific to veterans would continue, while immediate treatment for the more common health problems would be immediately available.
Veteran's health care is a big and complicated system. It has had serious problems practically forever. Now the country has a golden opportunity to do what is right and change the system forever. If, for once, those with the responsibility can keep the politics out and just think of the veterans, progress can be made. To my mind, it must be done. These men and women have earned it.