As Congressman Bennie Thompson walked the halls and entered the rooms at the Sonny Montgomery V.A. Hospital Friday, he shook hands and learned of the services available to those who are treated there.
But behind closed doors with hospital administrators, he had frank discussions about complaints he's been receiving. Those complaints range from staffing shortages at the hospital, to questionable patient deaths.
"I wanted to come and see for myself," he tells us. "This tour today is part of the complete process of getting the full view from the informational standpoint as to what's going on."
Thompson says he spoke to administrators about employee morale, patient care, and the plight of homeless veterans treated at the facility.
"They're at maximum capacity for homeless veterans in this area. I want to go back and see if I can improve the allocation of vouchers for veterans who might be homeless in this area," The Congressman says.
A hospital administration that one month ago Thompson considered in disarray, stuck by his side during the tour. Thompson says they're working hard to make improvements.
"This center is among the top ten percent performing medical centers across the V.A., that doesn't mean we don't have opportunities to improve," says Administrator Rica Lewis Payton.
"I think we can all be proud that our men and women in uniform, should they need the services of this facility, they should come," Thompson says.
Back in May, Madison County authorities arrested a nurse practitioner at the hospital for mishandling prescription drugs. Dot Taylor is currently on administrative leave from the V.A. Hospital. She served as the Assistant Director of Primary Care. Congressman Thompson says he is aware of the arrest. Lewis Payton referred all questions regarding Taylor to the U.S. Inspector General.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:04 PM EDT2014-09-16 18:04:16 GMT
Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing says his office is working a death pending case, involving two bodies found Monday afternoon.Family members went by to check on a mother and son and found both of themMore >>
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Tuesday, September 16 2014 12:24 PM EDT2014-09-16 16:24:15 GMT
We're trying to get more information now on a body found in Jackson this morning. We have few details available, but JPD confirms a man was found dead around 5 am at I-55 North, near Beasley Road andMore >>
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Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:39 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:39:00 GMT
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All lanes are back open and traffic is flowing smoothly.
Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:18 AM EDT2014-09-16 06:18:35 GMT
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Tuesday, September 16 2014 12:23 PM EDT2014-09-16 16:23:56 GMT
Fire fighters are on the scene of a massive house fire burning in West Jackson. It started before 4:00am on Patann Street near Boling Street. That's near Medgar Evers Blvd. Flames have completely engulfedMore >>
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Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:11 AM EDT2014-09-16 14:11:21 GMT
An 18-year-old University of Virginia student has been missing since Saturday and police are concerned about her safety. Hannah Elizabeth Graham sent her friends a text message around 1:20 a.m. on Saturday,More >>
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Tuesday, September 16 2014 1:42 AM EDT2014-09-16 05:42:19 GMT
Relief is on the way for motorists in Brandon who travel through the Highway 80 and Interstate 20 intersection. Planned construction will improve a high accident area at the on ramp there. "It's justMore >>
Relief is on the way for motorists in Brandon who travel through the Highway 80 and Interstate 20 intersection. Planned construction will improve a high accident area at the on ramp there.More >>
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