In response to multiple articles by, the Dorn VA Medical Center in Columbia, SC, decided to hide in the shadows by removing pictures of their staff in the lobby of the medical center, rather than address chronic and serious problems that adversely affect those they are supposed to be serving, America's veterans.
Dr. Richard Stone, HMFIC

Call it what you will, lip-service, duplicity, hypocrisy, insincerity, lies, shams; you name it. When some of the folks at the Dorn VA Medical Center in Columbia, SC say, “thank you for your service,” it’s nothing more than an insincere expression to make you think they really care for you.

While there are many dedicated employees in the VA’s healthcare system, there are many who practice deceitfulness in speech and conduct. They practice a form of duplicity by speaking and/or acting in two different ways to different people concerning the same matter.

We discovered this was especially true when the Dorn VA Medical Center deals with people contemplating self-destruction, veterans who have lost all hope and desperately cry out for help.

Sometimes our veterans, confronted with problems in life they view as insurmountable cry out for help from the VA. Instead of being helped, they are yanked around in a stupid system. They become even more depressed as they are forced to enter the VA maze, finding only frustration instead of real help.

A letter sent to us about a female veteran tells us all we need to know about the Dorn VA Medical Center. Instead of helping her in her hour of need, they humiliated her instead. Here, in her own words, is what happened…

Today has been a rough day for me, so please be patient.

Steven L. Lieberman, MD, MBA, FACHE, VA Under Secretary for Health

I called the suicide hotline today. He convinced me to go to the local VA emergency room and someone would be there for me to talk to. I went. As I get to the check in desk, I asked for the mental health nurse I was told to ask for. “What’s it in reference to?”

I am in the emergency room waiting room, people standing all around me…I did not want to announce my business to everyone. She asked me the question again. I left. That’s the first try for help.

I sat in my car and called the VA and had the operator transfer me to mental health. Amanda answers the phone. Im in tears. I am in tears on the phone asking if there was any one there I could speak to. Only a social worker.

She pulls up my info and tells me about a missed appointment from 8 months ago. I need to speak to someone please….she goes on and on…never mind Amanda. She hangs up with me in mid sentence. That’s the second try for help.

I leave. As soon as I turn out of the VA, the crisis hotline guy calls and was like hey…they said you never showed. Yes I did. Told him what happened. He talked me down and said that he would stay on the phone with me and tell the front desk lady why I was there so the whole room wouldn’t know my business.

Dr. Gerard R. Cox, Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Organizational Excellence

I walked back in, gave her the phone and immediately had to stop her from placing the phone on speaker phone. After she hangs up with him she goes “Well if you would have told me what you needed I could have helped. Here is the nurse who can help you.

The nurse walks up to me standing in front of the same front desk, with the same people and loudly ask “So what seems to be the problem today.” So…we are going to have a session in the waiting room? Never mind. I will call and make an appointment.

I turned around and walked away. I made it to the stop sign before I was grabbed from behind by the Chief of the VA police Department in Columbia, SC. He immediately twisted my arm up behind my back while yelling that I wasn’t going anywhere.

I am a violent sexual assault survivor. Its in my file. So imagine the reaction when he grabbed me from behind. He √ówould not let go. By this time two more officers are walking towards me. One I know because we served together.

In tears I turn to the asshole man handling me and told him ” I am a sexual assault survivor could you please let me go.” He twisted harder. By this time the officer I know comes to us and is shocked its me. I’m still trying to jerk my arm back and get this man from behind me.

Michael Schausten, Chief of the VA Police Dept.

My friend tells him its alright after the Chief threatened to arrest me because I didn’t calmly let him assault my body. Once he let me go I calmly joined my friend back into the Columbia Dorn VA.

My clothes were taken away, a monitor placed on my arm, labs drawn, stuck in a room, had to convince a social worker not to hold me because I have kids to take care of and I wasn’t going to blow out my brains. That was the third try for help.

Was discharged…..and still NEVER talked to ANYONE about my mental health issue. During this entire ordeal, not one medical staff, police officer asked me if I was OK. I went to talk to someone. Get some help. Instead, I was treated like a damn criminal, locked away and still never received the help I needed.

I went straight to patient advocacy and filed a complaint. If I was someone who was extremely suicidal, the Columbia VA would have lost me after the first try. Three tries and I still did not speak to any one or even get an appointment. I see why it’s 22 a day.

Evetta “Gatekeeper” Gregg, handles all the tough cases at the Dorn VA Medical Center, making sure that no one enters the “gate” without her permission. She has been very successful keeping the hoi polloi behind the gates for her taskmasters. is fortunate to have people reporting into us from all over the world, this includes many veteran advocates. One of our advocates who helps us monitor the VA Centers in VISN 7 tells us the VA is doing all they can to control and marginalize him.

Our advocate told us the VA chain of supervision apparently must have had a meeting about how to control him and prevent him from what they consider as his interference in their administrative activities. The advocate told us, “My God, if these people would only do what they are supposed to be doing, I would have no reason to call them on behalf of suffering veterans.”

He received a call from Dr. Gerard R. Cox, Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Organizational Excellence. Cox requested that he contact the gate keeper at the Dorn VA Medical Center, none other than Evetta Gregg.

The veterans advocate felt he was receiving nothing more than lip-service from Dr. Cox when at 4:55 pm on a Friday, he wanted to end the phone call by saying he had a meeting to attend. The problem of lip-service for care about suicidal veterans goes right to the top. They think that by providing a 1-800 suicide hotline, that’s all they need to do.

Instead of helping people contemplating self-destruction, the Gestapo at the Dorn VA Medical Center prefers to handcuff them instead, a Dorn VA Medical Center demonstration of real empathy and understanding.

David Omura, Director of the Dorn VA Medical Center, Columbia, South Carolina.

Evetta Gregg is very good at getting people under control. She is the person who helps keep the Negroes (and everyone else) controlled with her soothing, but insincere “thank you for your service” retort, in order to pacify angry veterans crying out for help.

Dr. Stone, as the Executive in Charge of the Veterans Health Administration, you need to take decisive action. The leadership at the Dorn VA Medical Center, and some of the people in the chain of supervision are seriously failing our veterans. Why are they still there?

People need to be held accountable for their negligence and poor leadership. We ask that you exercise your prerogative as the Chief Executive Officer in Charge and demonstrate the necessary leadership to clean up the Dorn VA mess.

Dr. Gerard Cox is hardly the person you want as your Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Organizational Excellence. So far, he has failed to demonstrate any excellence that we can see.

And, where the hell are you Renee? The Dorn VA Medical Center continues to fail in the number one mission of serving America’s veterans. Why don’t you demonstrate some leadership and remove people for what happen in the above example. We ask once again, WHERE IN THE HELL ARE¬† YOU?

Renee Oshinsky, Responsible for all things in the VISN 7 Network. We have routinely asked where is Oshinsky, because she has failed to demonstrate any leadership whatsoever, at least that we can see? Don’t send Dr. Cox to do your bidding, you make the phone call yourself.