Veterans health care simply needs to be better. The fact that so many veterans and service members go untreated after being wounded in combat or injured on duty is despicable. Here at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, wounded warriors do not receive the treatment they need to return to their families and live normal lives. I am one of them.
I had no idea when I arrived at Walter Reed in January 2016 that I would still be here today. What I did notice when I first got here was that all the service members in my hospital ward had been there 18 months or longer. While I know some medical conditions require soldiers to stay in the hospital for extended periods of time, they would leave a lot sooner if they received proper care.
Health Care for Wounded Warriors
Like most veterans here, I have gone through many surgeries and have spent countless hours in the emergency room for treatment of my excessive pain. I’ve been forced to have acupuncture and other types of treatments that don’t help my medical problems. Sadly, this is because of the failure of my primary care physician.
In a recent meeting with the general over all the medical facilities here, 16 out of 17 patients complained about my primary care physician, saying they were not receiving the right medical attention. Hearing their concerns and difficulties made me sick. We are free test subjects for doctors who won’t do their job. Many military medical centers have this same problem.
What Should We Do?
Many personnel advised me to notify my representative and ask them to conduct a congressional inquiry. I did, and it was amazing. I immediately started to receive the right medical treatment for my condition. But, why did it have to come to that? Why are there so many wounded, injured, or sick service members and veterans are out there with no one to make sure that they get the proper medical care they need?
We deserve proper medical treatment.
I urge every veteran and service member who feels that they are not receiving proper care to take the same steps I did. Don’t sit back and wait for your so-called doctors to do their jobs, or you may spend years waiting and never receive the right medical treatment.