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Panel to hold hearing at VA ‘Candy Land’ facility

Panel to hold hearing at VA ‘Candy Land’ facility

A bipartisan group of Wisconsin lawmakers will hold a hearing at a Veterans Affairs facility in their state where patients were allegedly prescribed pain medications like candy.

A report last month by the Center for Investigative Reporting found patients had nicknamed the Tomah VA Medical Center in Wisconsin “Candy Land” because of the number of pain opiates doled out.
House Veterans Affairs’ Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-Fla.) this week granted the lawmakers’ request to hold a field hearing.

“I wholeheartedly share your concerns about the importance of ensuring appropriate pain care is provided to veterans in Tomah and across the country and the need for further congressional oversight of VA’s pain and medication management strategies,” Miller wrote in a letter to Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.).

Duffy, along with fellow Wisconsin Reps. Jim Sensenbrenner (R), Ron Kind (D), and Mark Pocan (D), wrote Miller last week to request the field hearing.

Miller told Duffy he looks forward to “working with you and other interested members of the Wisconsin congressional delegation to schedule a field hearing in Tomah at the earliest opportunity.”

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) has also written to leaders of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee asking for a hearing on the Tomah facility.

Baldwin last month also reportedly fired her deputy state director for allegedly mishandling whistleblower allegations into the facility.

The Wisconsin Republican Party on Thursday filed a complaint requesting the Senate Ethics Committee look into the firing and allegations the aide received a severance package to stay quiet about the matter.

“As part of a massive cover-up, Tammy Baldwin wrongly appropriated taxpayer funds to compensate a Senate employee who would not have performed official government duties while also fraudulently offering a contract to silence a former employee in order save Baldwin’s own political career,” according to the complaint.

Read More:Panel to hold hearing at VA ‘Candy Land’ facility | TheHill.

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