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Va Med Center Chain Of Command

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So I am about to go up the VA medical center "chain of command" and I've learned from many posts that this is common...

What is the typical chain of command at a VA medical center (above the Patient Advocate)? I dislike complaining but am not averse to it where treatment and people become inaccessible. There must be a ton of people in between the Pat Adv and the Director.... I'm sure its like the military - if you go right to the base commander with an issue, you not only make the problem worse, you piss off a bunch of people in between him and yourself in a big hurry.

Thanks! :biggrin:


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I think I would write a letter to the Director of Medical Services. Ask them if you need to go to your local newschannel or newspaper to get help. The VAMC is really a group of institutions inside a single building. I never knew a pharmacy could overrule a doctor's orders until I tried to get my pain prescription filled recently. Then I found out the DEA could overrule every doctor and pharmacist in the VA. Go to the top. If you piss people at the top off it creates heat for those below. That is good. They are all worms.

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Top dog is the Director.

Next in line is the chief of staff.

The next one is the Associate director of Patient care services.

Department heads

Department Managers.

Other Managers.

Work leaders



Some VA's have assistant Directors so they would slide in at number 2.

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What agencies besides the OIG provide external oversight for VAMC's? I've seen the OIG put sheets up around the VA, they usually say something like "CONTACT US....HERE'S HOW". The one time I saw them, they were everywhere in the hospital. A few weeks later, when I returned, they were all gone. Problem is, I only saw those OIG contact info notices once and the OIG online form for submitting a comment or complaint is down.

Initially, a congressman or the OIG comes to mind. I am curious to see if the community here has tried anyone else with success in resolving an issue that stagnates at the patient advocate or director level for too long.

Thank you!

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