President Obama is opposing suggestions to privatize the Department of Veterans Affairs to improve the health care that veterans receive.
In an interview with The Colorado Springs Gazette, he said that his administration had made progress modernizing the department and providing veterans with more timely care. Privatizing the agency would delay that progress, Mr. Obama said.
The department was criticized when it was disclosed that secret wait lists were uncovered at a veterans health care system in Arizona amid reports that several veterans had died waiting for care. Government investigations found significant system failures.
“The notion of dismantling the V.A. system would be a mistake,” Mr. Obama told The Gazette, referring to the Veterans Administration, which the department was known as until 1989. “If you look at, for example, V.A. health care, there have been challenges getting people into the system. Once they are in, they are extremely satisfied and the quality of care is very high.”
Mr. Obama said he will continue to improve the Department of Veterans Affairs.