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Too tired to care about VA scandal?
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review ^ | August 3, 2013 | Salena Zito

Posted on 08/04/2013 5:48:11 PM PDT by neverdem

An unknown number of U.S. military veterans are dead within 30 days of contracting Legionnaires' disease in a Veterans Affairs hospital in Pittsburgh.

Aside from their family members, few people seem to be outraged.

If that doesn't grab your attention, perhaps this will: VA officials in charge when those men were dying from a preventable illness received more than $100,000 in performance bonuses.

The same bureaucrats who were paid handsomely for negligence and incompetence also refuse to answer reporters' questions about whether they've removed the deadly Legionella bacteria from hospitals that were built to heal, protect and serve those who served us. More veterans could die if the bacteria are not removed, and no one appears to care.

Where is the moral outrage?

The national media have no problem devoting resources and airtime to whatever sexcapade New York mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner, a Democrat, will admit to next, or whether Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, both Republicans, have escalated their war of words beyond bacon and pork.

Surely the same national media have time to draw attention to veterans' needless deaths.

And what about other Americans? Are we so wearied by a long recession that we can only focus on our own financial worries and not the tragedy of preventable deaths?

Or perhaps we're just fatigued with the Obama administration's scandals — the IRS targeting conservative groups, the National Security Agency seeing, hearing and tracking just about everything that everyone in this country does, the Justice Department tapping journalists' phones and emails, the still-murky details of how the White House responded to a terrorist attack on the U.S. outpost in Benghazi last September that left four dead.

Scandals aside, the country is coming to grips with the bankruptcy of once-formidable Detroit, the incitement by the press and the president of a racial divide over the tragic death of Trayvon Martin, and nagging uncertainties over the implementation of ObamaCare.

In short, America may be just too tired to care — and it appears the VA is betting on just that.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has linked the VA Pittsburgh outbreak to at least five deaths, but a Trib investigation shows the number is higher.

Our newspaper's investigations also found that VA and CDC officials did not review water-quality testing records, which showed alarmingly high levels of Legionella bacteria in the water system dating back to at least 2007.

Late last week, the VA's undersecretary of health, Dr. Robert Petzel, was speaking at The National Press Club in Washington, a place specifically designed for open questioning by the press. After the speech, Petzel was asked what he had to say to vets who are concerned because the VA hospital continues to be run by those who presided over the outbreak.

The undersecretary just stared dully straight ahead and refused to acknowledge the question.

He continued to ignore another question from a Trib reporter about what he would say to veterans who admit they fear going to the VA for treatment because of its handling of the Legionella outbreak.

Petzel had just finished an hour-long speech, bragging about the VA's upgrades.

His spokesman said the press club wasn't the place for questions.

But with all due respect, sir, it is the press club.

Washington politics is no friend to the soldier: It is deaf to the VA scandal that has happened in Pittsburgh.

It is deaf to the impact of reducing military readiness as it debates national defense in an age of austerity — something many career military men passionately believe will bring about the slow decay of ground-force readiness and render American servicemen and -women unprepared for the next military conflict.

Soldiers are the purest example of valor and sacrifice; every moment of their service, even the mundane ones, has great meaning and purpose. The only thing that protects our country and the freedoms we enjoy is the resolution and discipline of a well-led American soldier.

How can we stand by and not hold accountable those who neglected our veterans, whose love of God and country inspired them to serve and preserve our country's people and our fundamental liberties?

Salena Zito covers politics for Trib Total Media (412-320-7879 or szito@tribweb.com).


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Politics/Elections; US: District of Columbia; US: Pennsylvania
KEYWORDS: coverup; homicide; legionnaires; legionnairesdisease; pittsburgh; va; vahospitals; vascandal; vets; zito
What's one more phony scandal? /s
1 posted on 08/04/2013 5:48:11 PM PDT by neverdem
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To: neverdem

Unless these were all black soldiers being killed by racist half white doctors...

What difference does it make????

(to the media)

(with deference to Hillary!)


2 posted on 08/04/2013 5:50:32 PM PDT by 2banana (My common ground with terrorists - they want to die for islam and we want to kill them)
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To: neverdem

If they were terrorists (DNC-carrying Obama’s people
at Guantanamo) THEY would get medical care.

Veterans and Americans are the ENEMY of the government.


3 posted on 08/04/2013 5:51:13 PM PDT by Diogenesis
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To: Diogenesis

...and why wasn’t “major” hassan being treated in that facility?????????


4 posted on 08/04/2013 5:57:18 PM PDT by hal ogen (First Amendment or Reeducation Camp?)
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To: neverdem

Yes. Another Federal institution that is completely F-ed up?

Huh, unbelievable. I am completely outraged.

Now what?


5 posted on 08/04/2013 5:57:54 PM PDT by DManA
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To: Salena Zito; upchuck
Legionella acquired its name after a July 1976 outbreak of a then-unknown "mystery disease" sickened 221 persons, causing 34 deaths. The outbreak was first noticed among people attending a convention of the American Legion—an association of U.S. military veterans. The convention in question occurred in Philadelphia during the U.S. Bicentennial year. This epidemic among U.S. war veterans, occurring in the same city as—and within days of the 200th anniversary of—the signing of the Declaration of Independence, was widely publicized and caused great concern in the United States.[3] On January 18, 1977, the causative agent was identified as a previously unknown bacterium subsequently named Legionella. See Legionnaires' Disease for full details.

These incompetent bureaucrats should face charges off negligent homicide.

6 posted on 08/04/2013 6:00:38 PM PDT by neverdem (Register pressure cookers! /s)
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To: neverdem

This—This is not a scandal it is an outright crime. Why is it almost something EVERYDAY with these people?

Let’s see what the Silver Star Families of America will say.


7 posted on 08/04/2013 6:02:41 PM PDT by Steve Newton (And the Wolves will learn what we have shown before-We love our sheep we dogs of war. Vaughn)
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To: neverdem

I bet Code Pink will have a daily protest outside the building like they did at Walter Reed, right?


8 posted on 08/04/2013 6:08:52 PM PDT by shelterguy
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To: neverdem

This story is going nowhere because we have a Democrat in office and because the victims are patriots.


9 posted on 08/04/2013 6:11:23 PM PDT by Dogbert41 (Thy Kingdom come!)
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To: shelterguy

If not Westboro “Baptist”..”church”.

>>>>>>this mr sharpton....is an ATROCITY<<<<<<<


10 posted on 08/04/2013 6:21:19 PM PDT by MeshugeMikey (Fake BC Explained http://i41.tinypic.com/eqcn84.gif)
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To: neverdem

The purpose of the VA is not to take care of Veterans. The purpose of the VA is to provide jobs for Democrats.


11 posted on 08/04/2013 6:25:51 PM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: neverdem

Same old, same old...


12 posted on 08/04/2013 6:27:55 PM PDT by RedHeeler
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To: neverdem

Very sad indeed...having trouble recognizing my Country nowadays.......too late?


13 posted on 08/04/2013 6:32:14 PM PDT by slipper (The best is yet to come)
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To: neverdem

Am I wrong to think that Federal employees shouldn’t be entitled to bonuses paid for with taxpayer dollars? Especially when the alternative for poor performance means you have very little chance of ever getting fired?


14 posted on 08/04/2013 6:42:28 PM PDT by VeniVidiVici (Play the 'Knockout Game' with someone owning a 9mm and you get what you deserve)
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To: neverdem

Tweeted and BookMarked for continued tweeting until it catches up with the administrators.

Dear Lord, keep watch over our Veterans who have given so much.
Tatt


15 posted on 08/04/2013 6:46:31 PM PDT by thesearethetimes... ("Courage, is fear that has said its prayers." Dorothy Bernard)
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To: neverdem
officials in charge when those men were dying from a preventable illness received more than $100,000 in performance bonuses.

Early innovators for Obomney Care

16 posted on 08/04/2013 6:57:25 PM PDT by logic101.net (How many more children must die on the altar of "gun free zones"?)
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To: neverdem

Makes sense to me they would get bonuses, the goal is to reduce the cost of healthcare, to do this you do not treat people, you let them die.

The left believes there are too many people on the planet.

Many millions more will die before this ends.


17 posted on 08/04/2013 6:58:28 PM PDT by stockpirate (American taxpayer's are: The New World Order slaves for the collective.)
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To: stockpirate

scandal fatigue


18 posted on 08/04/2013 6:59:52 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: neverdem
Our newspaper's investigations also found that VA and CDC officials did not review water-quality testing records, which showed alarmingly high levels of Legionella bacteria in the water system dating back to at least 2007.

Something funny about this story.

Legionella makes people sick when inhaled, not when it's ingested. Most outbreaks are connected to HVAC systems, not water systems.

If the water is the source, it is probably related to being contracted while showering.

It's really pretty easy to control in hot water systems.

The disease is much more common than most people realize. It is often misdiagnoed as pneumonia, of which it is indeed a form.

19 posted on 08/04/2013 7:04:41 PM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: neverdem; P.O.E.; Salena Zito
An unknown number of U.S. military veterans are dead within 30 days of contracting Legionnaires' disease in a Veterans Affairs hospital in Pittsburgh.

Ping and bump. Thanks Ms. Zito.

20 posted on 08/04/2013 7:05:45 PM PDT by brityank (The more I learn about the Constitution, the more I realise this Government is UNconstitutional !!)
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To: prisoner6; rightwingintelligentsia; PennsylvaniaMom; surroundedbyblue; GregB

Pittsburgh ping!

I heard about this, but didn’t realize it was in a Pittsburgh VA hospital!


21 posted on 08/04/2013 7:13:15 PM PDT by sneakers
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To: neverdem; blueyon; KitJ; T Minus Four; xzins; CMS; The Sailor; ab01; txradioguy; Jet Jaguar; ...

Active Duty/Retiree Ping.


22 posted on 08/04/2013 7:18:47 PM PDT by Jet Jaguar
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To: Salena Zito

Thank you for raising awareness to this deplorable situation.


23 posted on 08/04/2013 7:18:47 PM PDT by NonValueAdded ("When there is no penalty for failure, failures proliferate." George F. Will)
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To: Jet Jaguar
The stench of this Regime continues to rise unchecked, permeating the fabric of our once proud Nation!


America demands Justice
for the Fallen of Benghazi!

Genuflectimus non ad principem sed ad Principem Pacis!

Listen, O isles, unto me; and hearken, ye people, from far; The LORD hath called me from the womb; from the bowels of my mother hath he made mention of my name. (Isaiah 49:1 KJV)

24 posted on 08/04/2013 7:27:35 PM PDT by ConorMacNessa (HM/2 USN, 3/5 Marines RVN 1969 - St. Michael the Archangel defend us in Battle!)
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To: Sherman Logan
Whether inhaled or ingested, Legionella is pretty much related to a water system.

I ‘ve worked on one outbreak that was caused by non-engineered (saving $$$) modifications to a complicated potable water system in a very large manufacturing facility. Fortunately, there were no fatalities and 2 out of 3 cases were to cheapskates in the management offices instead of the production workers.

25 posted on 08/04/2013 7:32:29 PM PDT by Hootowl99
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To: Sherman Logan
I have worked one Legionella out break that appeared to be ingested, not inhallation, as it was traced to drinking water fountains. For the inhalation vs. ingestion mechanism, I think it can go either way. Inhalation certainly seems the most common route though.
26 posted on 08/04/2013 7:41:54 PM PDT by Hootowl99
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To: Sherman Logan

Legionella bacteria are naturally found in water and cases of Legionella pneumonia have been associated with aerosolization from cooling towers, evaporative condensers, misters, whirlpools, potable water, water fountains, humidifiers and respiratory therapy equipment. Rare cases have been attributed to aerosolized potting soil.

http://www.infectioncontroltoday.com/articles/2012/04/experience-is-the-best-teacher-even-when-it-comes-to-legionella-risks.aspx


27 posted on 08/04/2013 8:41:27 PM PDT by neverdem (Register pressure cookers! /s)
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To: neverdem

bkmk


28 posted on 08/04/2013 10:26:13 PM PDT by AllAmericanGirl44 ('Hey citizen, what's in YOUR closet?')
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To: wardaddy; Joe Brower; Cannoneer No. 4; Criminal Number 18F; Dan from Michigan; Eaker; Jeff Head; ...
Second-Term Nightmare - ObamaCare's chickens come home to roost.

Lords of the Transition Team (Mark Steyn)

The Attack In Benghazi: Worth Investigating After All

HuntForTruth.org Launches New Media-Rich Website Designed to Combat the Misleading Campaign to Ban Lead Ammunition Throughout the U.S.

Some noteworthy articles about politics, foreign or military affairs, IMHO, FReepmail me if you want on or off my list.

29 posted on 08/04/2013 11:17:36 PM PDT by neverdem (Register pressure cookers! /s)
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To: neverdem

Definitely not too tired to care. Thanks for pinging it to my attention!


30 posted on 08/04/2013 11:22:04 PM PDT by Gene Eric (Don't be a statist!)
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To: neverdem

Unknown number? It should be made known.

Hospital infections killed my grandma, those places are filthy. Wouldn’t expect any better from the federal government, though our vets deserve it.


31 posted on 08/04/2013 11:22:32 PM PDT by Impy (RED=COMMUNIST, NOT REPUBLICAN)
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To: neverdem
I checked the CDC site and they identified the cause and it's cleaned up. Local construction resulted in the germ getting into the air and it ended up contaminating their water system. Apparantly the chlorine/heating/silver/copper methods of keeping the water clean were not strong enough for this germ, even though the levels used worked to stop the Legionella germ before. LINK

I also wrote about it on my medical blog.LINK.

The Mainstream media only would care if it hit rich yuppies, not veterans or blue collar folk in Pittsburgh.

32 posted on 08/05/2013 2:05:14 AM PDT by LadyDoc (liberals only love politically correct poor people)
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To: Hootowl99
traced to drinking water fountains.

Could it have been aerosolized by the upward water stream?

33 posted on 08/05/2013 2:15:09 AM PDT by Silentgypsy (:))
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To: neverdem

Oh, I should have read the entire thread before responding.


34 posted on 08/05/2013 2:16:18 AM PDT by Silentgypsy (:))
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To: neverdem
I know where I would look first and I'd use a breathing device. Culture the facilities chill water unit air handling units. It's a simple prevention really and don't laugh. Urinal Cakes or simular device placed in the water in the air handling unit. This was at least a once a month usually more often routine task for us.

I'm assuming this is a fairly large facility requiring at least several hundred tons likely more of cooling. In such cases Chill Water air conditioning plants or aka Chillers are used. Water is piped to several large air handlers where the cooling coil is. These coils in extreme heat also have shower nozzle sprayers and thus the most likely source. We were doing this in a medical facility I worked at over 18 year ago.

35 posted on 08/05/2013 2:27:23 AM PDT by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: Sherman Logan

Ping to post 35. It might make more sense.


36 posted on 08/05/2013 2:30:43 AM PDT by cva66snipe (Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?)
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To: LadyDoc

Thanks for the links!


37 posted on 08/05/2013 9:15:00 AM PDT by neverdem (Register pressure cookers! /s)
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To: Silentgypsy
“Could it have been aerosolized by the upward water stream?”

Yep, it's not impossible although I do not know the probability.

38 posted on 08/05/2013 11:53:35 AM PDT by Hootowl99
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To: blueunicorn6
The purpose of the "<"ABC—ZZZZZZ">" is not to take care of . The purpose of the "<"ABC—ZZZZZZ">" is to provide jobs for the peasants to ensure that every incumbents' power is secured.
39 posted on 08/05/2013 12:16:39 PM PDT by antidisestablishment (Mahound delenda est)
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To: neverdem
In my opinion, the one group of Americans who earned their health care benefits are veterans. Less than 1% of the population of this nation wears the nation's uniform and serves through blood and loneliness. Less than 7% of all Americans have ever served, and if you subtract the WW II and Korean veterans who are almost gone to be with God, than number is closer to 3%.

As in ancient Rome, the masses demand more Government benefits that they never earned.

Obama and Hagel want to quadruple TRICARE premiums, and the reaction from our "fellow Americans" is the sound of crickets.

The love of Americans has waxed cold. They surround themselves with their own misery stories, and they have quickly forgotten the sacrifice of those who gave so much for their own freedom.

40 posted on 08/05/2013 4:15:55 PM PDT by SkyPilot
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To: neverdem

Thanks for the ping!


41 posted on 08/05/2013 7:32:02 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: brityank; fatima; Fresh Wind; st.eqed; xsmommy; House Atreides; Nowhere Man; South Hawthorne; ...
PA Ping!

If you see posts of interest to Pennsylvanians, please ping me.

Thanks!

Thanks brityank for the heads up

Sorry for the delayed ping - I was away for the weekend.

42 posted on 08/06/2013 6:07:49 AM PDT by P.O.E. (Pray for America)
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