Sexual Assaults In VA Hospitals

One would assume that when a member of the military leaves the service and makes use of facilities of the Veteran’s Administration, they would be in a safe place. A new report by the Government Accountability Officer reveals that sexual assaults are common in VA hospitals. The report claims there were 67 allegations of rape, 185 allegations of inappropriate touching 8 examples of “forceful” medical examinations, 13 cases of forced oral sex, and 11 other claims of sexual deviancy. The report does not provide proof of these allegations, it simply reports what was reported. The House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, blamed VA procedures for not adequately screening patients who might be sex offenders as well as failing to provide security against these individual when they are in a ward. The report was particularly concerned about lack of security for patients.

Senator Patty Murray pinpointed a new issue that increasingly has become important– there are thousands of women leaving the US military and requiring use of VA facilities. She commented, the “VA has serious work to do to provide basic patient safety for thousands of women veterans who are turning to VA for care, including the invisible wounds of war.”