Credentialing & Privileging | 09.01.19
Investigation Into Surgeon at Biloxi VA Ends With Oversight Concerns For Entire Facility
The VA Office of the Inspector General (OIG) has concluded its investigation into the Gulf Coast VA medical center in Biloxi, Mississippi, finding multiple infractions by facility leaders there. Officials originally opened the investigation to learn more about claims of improper care from the thoracic surgeon but expanded the probe's scope as they discovered more troubling information. The investigation showed the facility's leaders and credentialing committee willfully overlooked multiple red flags in the surgeon's background and hired him anyway. Moreover, the hiring board had insufficient written records and documentation. Investigators further found multiple instances of VA leaders ignoring established processes while completing tasks, hypothesizing that the officials were partially or totally ignorant of VA policies. In all, the OIG has made 18 recommendations for the Biloxi facility to follow. These recommendations relate to professional practice evaluations, reporting to external agencies, documentation policies, and institutional disclosure and review processes.