Special thanks
to our supporters

  • Trudy Wilner Stack
  • Liz Berman
  • Jan Lesher
  • Betsy Bolding
  • Ted Schmidt
  • Beth Borozan
  • Google News Initiative
  • Lester Bangs
  • Ida B. Wells
  • John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
  • Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation
  • & many more!

We rely on readers like you. Join them & contribute to the Sentinel today!

Hosting provider

Proud member of

Local Independent Online News Publishers Authentically Local Local First Arizona Institute for Nonprofit News
 1 2 >
Brandon Coleman was put on leave from his job at the Phoenix Veterans Affairs hospital after he complained about its care for suicidal vets. He and other whistleblowers testified to a Senate panel about VA retaliation.

“During my time at the Phoenix VA, I lost six veterans to suicide,” a former addiction therapist told Congress. “Each one was like a punch in the gut.” Brandon Coleman got another punch after he complained and appeared in news stories: he was placed on leave and barred from the hospital without an escort. Read more»

Dr. Katherine Mitchell, right, and Dr. Lisa Nee, who blew the whistle on Veterans Affairs facilities in Phoenix and Illinois, testify to a Senate committee on veterans care issues.

A doctor who blew the whistle on problems at the VA hospital in Phoenix testified Thursday that some things have improved since last year’s revelations, but whistleblower retaliation is alive and well. Read more»

Trump in February 2011.

Donald Trump distorts the facts in a recent op-ed in which he says Sen. John McCain has “abandoned our veterans” and “failed the state of Arizona and the country.” Read more»

The Department of Veterans Affairs had come under fire from lawmakers who said it was not acting quickly or forcefully enough against executives charged with mismanagement.

he Department of Veterans Affairs formally removed Sharon Helman from her position as Phoenix VA healthcare director on Monday for “lack of oversight and misconduct” in the troubled operations at the facility. Read more»

Officials said email conversations between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the VA Office of Inspector General on a report on the Phoenix VA were not only routine but were aimed “explaining what happened in Phoenix in the clearest possible way.”

Critics say emails from the Department of Veterans Affairs to its inspector general over a report on the Phoenix VA are cause for concern. But the VA said the emails were not only routine but helped explain "what happened in Phoenix in the clearest possible way." Read more» 1

Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Flagstaff, said she was 'appalled' that the director of the Phoenix VA health care system is still on paid leave while Department of Veterans Affairs officials review the troubled Valley operation.

The Department of Veterans Affairs has recommended the removal of four senior officials around the country, but missing from that list is the director of the troubled operation in Phoenix. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick said in an email Friday she was “appalled that Sharon Helman (the director of VA health care facilities in Phoenix) continues to receive a paycheck.” Read more»

Acting Veterans Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson told a Senate panel that it will take more than $17 billion over three years to fix problems at the agency that he inherited last month. A congressional bill to address problems at the agency would cost at least $30 billion by one estimate.

Acting Veterans Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson told a Senate committee Wednesday that the agency will need another $17.6 billion over the next three years to cut patient waiting times for the rising number of veterans. Read more»

Jose Mathews, Christian Head and Kathrine Mitchell. from left, doctors who exposed problems at Department of Veterans Affairs medical facilities, are sworn in before testifying at a House committee hearing on whistleblowers.

Dr. Katherine Mitchell knew she was "shooting my career in the foot" when she raised concerns about the quality of care the Department of Veterans Affairs was providing patients in Phoenix. But she told a House panel it was more important to look out for vets' welfare. Read more»

The House unanimously passed a bill Tuesday that allows veterans who having been waiting too long to go outside the VA system to seek health care. Read more»

Arizona Sens. Jeff Flake, left, and John McCain joined other Republican lawmakers proposing a bill that would give veterans a choice other than the Department of Veterans Affairs for their health care. Senate Democrats have introduced a similar bill.

With problem-plagued health care at the Department of Veterans Affairs, Arizona’s senators joined other lawmakers to back a bill letting vets seek care elsewhere. The bill, and a similar Democratic measure, come in the wake of problems that forced the VA secretary's resignation. Read more»

Warnings about long wait times go back at least to 2005, raising questions about how to overhaul a sprawling system that has been chronically understaffed. Read more»

Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki at a 2013 congressional hearing on veteran suicide and mental health. Shinseki resigned Friday amid reports that VA officials in Phoenix and other cities falsified patient wait list records.

Amid the controversy at the Phoenix VA facility, Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki's resignation was welcomed by some state lawmakers who also cautioned that more needs to be done. Before stepping down, Shinseki announced several fixes at the Phoenix facility. Read more»

U.S. Rep. Ron Barber said the resignation of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki is an "important step restoring our veterans’ and the nation’s trust in the Veterans Administration." Republicans McSally and McCain agreed, but took the opportunity to criticize the administration. Read more»

The inspector general's preliminary findings reveal that 1,700 patients at the veterans center in Phoenix were not on the official waiting list and that the average wait for new patients who did get appointments was nearly four months. Read more»

Dr. Thomas Lynch, left, assistant deputy undersecretary at the Department of Veterans Affairs, handled much of the questioning by House members over problems at the agency’s Phoenix facilities. Looking on is Joan Mooney, the assistant VA secretary for congressional affairs.

The House Veterans Affairs Committee hearing came just hours after a preliminary inspector general's report confirmed "significant delays in access to care" for vets at the agency's Phoenix medical facilities. It sparked renewed calls for Secretary Eric Shinseki's resignation. Read more»

 1 2 >