Investigative Journalist, Barry R. Clausen
July 8, 2014
The Veterans Affairs (VA) scandal continues across the U.S. and Northern California, it appears has escaped all but one investigation… so far. Some believe one of California’s North State VA facilitiesand VA doctors at McClellan Air Force Base should be investigated. This particular clinic is where Dr. Digpal Chauhan, “The Doctor That Almost Killed Me” is assigned. His boss Dr. Jane Addagatla has also recently been accused by VA staff of inappropriate actions related to Chauhan.
Congressman Ami Bera, M.D. (CA-7)
Even with the documentation available, the VA continues to keep patient and staff complaints secret while seemingly doing nothing and failing to do anything about exposing incompetent doctors. The office of Congressman Ami Bera, M.D. (CA-7) was contacted and according to his Veteran’ representative MatthewCeccato they are constrained from doing anything because of restrictions which would not allow them to become involved with VA legal issues as a result of the Tort Claim I filed against the VA. Ceccato stated that when contacted, the VA said it could be six months to a year before anything could transpire.
Congressman Jerry McNerney (CA-9)
A VA staff member at McClellan AFB contacted Congressman Jerry McNerney’s (CA-9) office about the VA’s inability to deal with (specific) incompetent doctors. On July 2, 2014 McNerney’s representative, Exodie Roe notified staff that the Office of Inspector General had notified them that an investigation was being initiated. On July 2, 2014 the OIG notified VA staff at McClellan about the investigation andissued them a case number.
Acting Secretary of VA Sloan D. Gibson
“We will continue to depend on the service of VA employees and leaders who place the interests of Veterans above and beyond self-interest; who serve Veterans with dignity, compassion, and dedication; who live by VA’s core values of Integrity, Commitment, Advocacy, Respect, and Excellence; and who have the moral courage to help us serve Veterans better by helping make our policy and procedures better.”
As reported in the California’s Appeal Democrat, “Yuba City in California’s North State is one of the 112 facilities nationwide on the VA’s list of facilities to be investigated. The audit found that of the 731 hospitals and clinics visited, 13 percent of staff scheduling appointments received instruction to falsify appointment dates to meet goals, according to the audit. The report doesn't spell out why the Yuba City clinic is on the list or what further investigation is necessary, although there will be an investigation into any possible misconduct.”
Another North State VA Medical facility, Redding VA Outpatient Clinic, Redding, CA, is not currently on any investigation list. In fact, it rates as one of the better VA clinics according to most of the Veterans using the Clinic. With the exception of VA’s Mental Health Doctor Greg Nelson - all is well in Redding.
As a Veteran myself, following an accident my VA medical documents show, I had a cough, dizziness and pain which are mentioned many times, however Chauhan, who was my primary care doctor at the time, only treated me with nose sprays and repeated prescriptions for cough syrup for over four months (120 days+). In addition, I was admitted into the Mather, California Emergency Room several times for cough/severe chest, stomach pains and dizziness. Upon release, each time I was told to contact my primary care doctor who had done me little good in the first place.
After several visits to Chauhan’s office I took my wife with me, Chauhan told both of us that he was a “lung expert.” When I questioned that statement he went on to say he was also a “brain expert” and Chauhan suggested that I had a mental problem and not physical difficulties.
On January 13, 2014 after the visit to Chauhan’s office I passed out at home about 1:00 a/m and stopped breathing from the dizzy spells and cough. If it had not been for my wife Julie giving me CPR, I may not have survived.
It took my nearly dying at home until it was discovered that there were, and continue to be many blood clots in my chest including large clots in my lungs and I have heart failure. I was admitted to Mather VA Hospital and put on blood thinners. When I developed a bleed in my abdomen I was placed in an ambulance and taken to the David Grant Hospital at Travis Air Force Base where I underwent surgery that resulted in the insertion of a tiny filter intended to catch future blood clots should they develop.
I have recently filed a malpractice Tort Suit against the VA and Chauhan for what I consider medical malpractice with the Regional Counsel of Department of Veterans Affairs in San Francisco. In addition there have been complaints filed by VA employees with the US Office of Inspector General (OIG), and with the US Office Special Counsel (OSC) against Dr. Jane Addagatla and Dr. Digpal Chauhan. There is also a personal letter sent to Sloan Gibson the acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
The following story is based on the complaints to the OIG, the OSC and the letter to Gibson. According to documents, for the past 18+ months Dr. Jane Addagatla, Digpal Chauhan’s boss has been the lead clinic doctor for both Yuba City and McClellan.
From VA staff, “Many patients say that they are unsatisfied with Dr. Chauhan and want to switch doctors and asked how to do it. When asked why, the answers are consistent: He does not listen to me, he rambles on and on about how he is the doctor and he knows what's best for the patient, that he refuses to write work notes when the patients are legitimately too sick to work, how he has not entered the consults for specialty treatment that has been discussed months if not a year ago and how rude he has been to them.”
According to McClellan staff on Monday, 16 June 2014, Dr. Addagatla was interviewing for the position of Clinic Lead for Northern California VA Health Care Systems. This was possibly the 2nd or 3rd interview she has been to with regard to this new position. As VA staff claims it has been suggested that Dr. Addagatla is allegedly covering for Dr. Chauhan and the second-rate care he has dispensed in order to keep her record clean and forward her personal career.
According to the Mather VA’s Public Relations Officer, Tara Ricks neither Chauhan nor Addagatla want to be interviewed for this story. David Stockwell, regional director for the Northern California VA was also asked for an interview three times and there was no reply.
During his retirement, Barry has been writing for several California newspapers including the Sacramento Valley Mirror. In conjunction with the Mirror he has also written for the national news service NewsWithViews. His controversial investigative stories can be found on the National NewsWithViews website.] Barry can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
© 2014 Barry R. Clausen - All Rights Reserved
Mr. Clausen has been a guest on over 250 U.S. and Canadian radio talk shows and TV news shows including ABC, CBS, NBC and repeatedly on FOX News. He has been featured or quoted in over 800 books, magazines and news articles including the San Francisco Chronicle, Washington Post, Vancouver Province, Canada’s B.C. Report, New York Times, Newsday, Seattle Times, Oregonian, Sacramento Bee, Christian Science Monitor, The Dallas Morning News and a lengthy article beginning on the front page of the Wall Street Journal.
Mr. Clausen’s information has been translated and used by publications in many foreign countries including Japan, Ireland, England, Turkey, Germany, France and Chile. In 1994, a film crew from Danish TV-2 flew to Seattle to interview Mr. Clausen for a television documentary about international and U.S. extremist organizations. The documentary, A MAN IN THE RAINBOW, was subsequently aired in several European countries.
His latest book "Burning Rage - The Growing Anger Within My Country," will be updated and available on Amazon.com early this spring.