White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said during a May 18 interview that President Obama is 'madder than hell' over delays at VA hospitals that may have contributed to the deaths of patients. (Brendan Smialowski / Getty Images)
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President Obama is “madder than hell” over delays at VA hospitals that may have contributed to the deaths of patients, and is determined to make improvements, a top aide says.
“At the same time that we’re looking at accountability we want to continue to perform to provide our veterans the services that they have earned,” said White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough in an interview broadcast Sunday on CBS’ “Face The Nation.”
A variety of investigations are focused on claims across the country that VA delay contributed to deaths, and that officials falsified records to conceal the lengths of waiting times for patients.
The VA’s undersecretary for health care stepped down Friday.
In the “Face The Nation” interview, McDonough told CBS Chief White House Correspondent Major Garrett that Obama is “demanding that we get to the bottom of the exact allegations that you’re talking about as it relates to whether veterans are getting the timely access to care that they have earned.”
When asked if Obama still has confidence in Veteran Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, McDonough said:
“The president will continue to demand that he and all of us who work for him continue to fix these things until they are functioning the way that our veterans, believe they should and the way that, so that they get the, the services and the benefits that they have earned.”
During congressional testimony last week, Shinseki also said he is “mad as hell” over the VA delays.