2014-05-31T110718Z_2_LYNXMPEA4U01U_RTROPTP_2_USA-VETERANS

Dressing the VA's wounds: What Obama faces now

United States Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki addresses The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans conference in WashingtonBy Julia Edwards and Susan Cornwell WASHINGTON (Reuters) – When U.S. President Barack Obama accepted the resignation on Friday of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki, he said his priority now was fixing the troubled agency whose officials are accused of covering up delays in providing healthcare for U.S. veterans. As Obama himself said, the sprawling Veterans Affairs department “has had problems for a very long time,” including management problems. Obama noted on Friday that the VA enrolled 2 million new veterans in healthcare under Shinseki’s watch.  Obama and many Democratic lawmakers say that the increase calls for more doctors and nurses to prevent veterans from having to endure long wait times for care. In February, Senate Republicans blocked a bill by Bernard Sanders, an Independent who caucuses with Democrats and chairs the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, to expand veterans’ benefits.

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