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Cincinnati VA Names New Director

The Cincinnati VA has a new director.

Embroiled in controversy, the Cincinnati VA Medical Center has named a new director. Vivian Hutson will oversee an annual budget of $373 million and a staff of 2,1oo.

Credit army
Col. Vivian Hutson is the new VA Director in Cincinnati.

Hutson recently retired as a Colonel from the U.S. Army Medical Specialist Corps and comes to the VA from the Office of the Surgeon General.

She replaces Interim Director Glenn Costie.

A nationally appointed committee took testimony in September in whistleblower cases at the Cincinnati VA Medical Center and is expected to conclude its findings in 90 days. During an interview with reporters at the American Legion Convention in August, Costie said Dr. Gene Goldman will lead the board made up of three to four people.

More than 30 people were asked to testify in the case that primarily centers around Dr. Barbara Temeck. She alleges nearly three dozen former and current staff members, who have complained both publicly and in a letter to Secretary of Veterans Affairs Bob McDonald about cost-cutting moves and hospital safety, are retaliating against her because they are being financially impacted.

McDonald told members of the American Legion the media has largely ignored the progress that has been made in delivering veterans health care through the VA system.

"You've heard many times that the VA is broken,'' McDonald said. "I disagree. The VA can be and is being reformed."

Yes, the former CEO of Procter & Gamble said, there are VA employees who have not done their jobs, but they are being weeded out of the system.

"It's a gross misrepresentation to cherry-pick one of them and hold that person up as an example of all," said McDonald.