Report: Philadelphia VA hospital lacked review



The inspector general recommended that standardized procedures be implemented throughout the VA. It also said the agency should follow-up to ensure patients who received too low of a dose receive appropriate care.

The program in Philadelphia had treated more than 100 prostate cancer patients before it was halted in 2008. The cases involved brachytherapy, in which implanted radioactive metal seeds are used to kill cancer cells. Most veterans got far less than the prescribed dose while others received too much.

In a statement released Monday, Katie Roberts, the VA press secretary, said the agency has cooperated fully with investigations into what happened and has taken precautions that prevent a similar situation from occurring.

In March, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced a $227,500 fine against the hospital stemming from the errors, one of its largest ever for a hospital error.

Senate Veterans' Affairs Chairman Daniel Akaka, who was among the members of Congress asking for the investigation, called the IG's findings "disappointing" and said his committee will follow-up to make sure changes take place.


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