WASHINGTON (AP) - The average wait time for new patients seeking a primary care doctor at the VA Center in Clarksburg, West Virginia, is 54 days - nearly four times what the Department of Veterans Affairs had set as a goal, according to data released Monday.
VA guidelines, since abandoned, said veterans should be seen within 14 days of their desired date for a primary care appointment. The department has since said that meeting that target was unattainable given existing resources and growing demand. Monday's audit by the VA called the 2011 decision by senior VA officials to set it, and then basing bonuses on meeting the target, an "organizational leadership failure."
Other VA facilities in West Virginia also are exceeding that goal. Martinsburg's wait time is 47 days; Beckley's is 39 days; Huntington's is just under 29 days.