truman memorial veterans hosptial

columbiamo.va.gov

The long delays for veterans seeking medical care at VA hospitals have prompted The American Legion to set up a short-term crisis center in St. Louis this week.

The United States Veterans Health Administration has recently been under national scrutiny, after reports that veterans were on waiting lists at some VA hospitals for more than 30 days… in some cases, dozens of people had died while still on waiting lists to receive care. Moreover, there’s been evidence of efforts at some hospitals to hide evidence of those long waiting lists. Congress is discussing the issue, and the Veterans Affairs Secretary resigned last month.

Katie Hiler / KBIA

Missouri Senator Roy Blunt continued his tour of mental health facilities in the state on Thursday with a stop at the Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans Hospital in Columbia. 

Blunt spoke with Veterans Affairs administrators about how to better assist veterans experiencing a mental health crisis who need treatment immediately. Blunt says he is encouraged by the efforts the hospital has made to shorten waitlist times but says there are also many ways it can still improve.

Three organizations are discussing building a 4.2-acre campus for veterans in northeast Columbia.

Null Value / Flickr

A report says Truman Memorial Veterans' Hospital failed to provide a safe environment for a 78-year-old man beaten to death last year at the Columbia facility.

The report for the Veterans Affairs Heartland Network was included in materials released in response to a Freedom of Information Act request by The Columbia Daily Tribune.

File / KBIA

Even with a potential federal government shutdown next week, some of Missouri’s programs and agencies will continue to operate as usual.

Emily Cain, the press secretary for the federal Office of Management and Budget, said that the Obama administration believes that a lapse in appropriations will not occur.

In addition, she said that the administration is “willing to work with Congress to enact a short-term continuing resolution to fund critical government operations.”

StoryCorps

Have you ever had a “driveway moment” listening to one of the many stories from the oral history project StoryCorps? The project has recorded about 45,000 interviews with everyday people across America. StoryCorps’ “Military Voices Initiatives” gathers stories from veterans, their families and others impacted by war, since 9/11.

Keith Burtis / Flickr

A 33-year-old Sedalia man charged with killing a fellow VA hospital patient in Columbia is due back in court after an earlier delay.

Rudy Perez Jr. is charged with first-degree murder in the Feb. 1 death of 78-year-old Robert Hill of Warsaw at Truman Memorial Veterans' Hospital. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. His attorney, David Tyson Smith, says Perez is schizophrenic.

Brian Turner / Flickr

A 33-year-old Sedalia man charged with killing a fellow VA hospital patient in Columbia now faces Pettis County assault charges.

The Columbia Missourian reports that Rudy Perez Jr. is charged with five misdemeanor assaults as well as resisting arrest in connection with several Sedalia incidents in the days before the Feb. 1 beating death of 78-year-old Robert Hill of Warsaw at Truman Memorial Veterans' Hospital.

Perez has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder. His lawyer says Perez is mentally ill.