Department of Veterans Affairs

photo of Ginger MacCutcheon
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Veterans are teaming up with engineers, designers and programmers in Lakewood Monday for a make-a-thon to help make life easier for disabled veterans.

Sherrod Brown at Ohio military installation
SHERROD BROWN STAFF / FACEBOOK

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) wants Congress to help veterans who might have been harmed by toxic emissions during deployment in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The military used open-air burn pits to dispose of waste, such as tires, medical waste, munitions, petroleum and lubricant products, which created toxic fumes potentially affecting service members. The military issued no guidelines on burning garbage until 2011.

photo of JC Sullivan, Pat French, Frank Gambosi
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Correction: Veterans Memorial Park is in Macedonia, not Northfield as noted previously.

Veterans Memorial Park in Macedonia added its newest monument over the weekend, honoring those who served in World War I.

The Veterans Day ceremony marked exactly 100 years since the armistice that ended fighting in World War I. During the ceremony, Veterans Memorial Park officials unveiled a large, black granite monument etched with battle scenes from what was described at the time as “the war to end all wars.”

photo of Sherrod Brown
JO INGLES / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown says the Trump administration cost the VA and veterans valuable time through the firing of former VA Secretary David Shulkin and botched attempt to name his replacement, Dr. Ronny Jackson.  

www.va.gov

Some advocates for veterans in Ohio want to change the way the Department of Veterans Affairs handles cases where it accidentally overpaid benefits.

Sen. Sherrod Brown and vets in Columbus
U.S. SEN. SHERROD BROWN

Ohio veterans as well as top VA officials met in Columbus today to talk about issues including suicide. For Ohio Public Radio, WOSU’s Esther Honig reports on the field hearing organized by a member of the Veterans Affairs committee.

Ohio is home to over 800,000 veterans, the majority of which are over the age of 55. Brown, who sits on the senate Veterans Affairs Committee, says he’s most concerned about the alarmingly high rate of suicides among vets-- about 22 individuals each day. He says it’s critical to get vets in touch with resources when they reenter civilian life.

The November election is about 50 days away, with no major statewide candidates this year. That leaves room for both sides of a controversial drug price issue on the ballot to hit the airwaves with millions of dollars in ads. Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler sat down with leaders from both sides to debate Issue 2.

Issue 2 may turn out to be the most expensive ballot issue campaign in Ohio history, topping the $64 million casino effort in 2008. The debate over drug prices has spawned a huge ad campaign, and is one of the most contentious issues in recent years.

Anthony Anderson and Tom Voss from the documentary “Almost Sunrise”
“Almost Sunrise”)

In July, a northeast Ohio man killed himself inside the Veterans Affairs Outpatient Clinic in Warren, while he was there for an appointment. His wife says he was a 23-year veteran of the Air Force Reserves who suffered with post-traumatic stress disorder.

There are concerns for the 850,000 veterans in Ohio, some of whom are struggling with PTSD as well. Ohio Public Radio’s Andy Chow reports a new documentary hopes to bring attention to the issue and help to those who need it.

photo of prescription pills
OHIOANS AGAINST THE DECEPTIVE PRESCRIPTION BALLOT ISSUE

A doctor is breaking away from Ohio’s largest medical groups to support a proposed law that would force the state to buy drugs at a lower price.

The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs buys drugs with a large discount. A ballot issue this November would force the state to buy drugs at that same low price or not at all.

All of Ohio’s major health care groups including the nurses and medical association are against the idea.

WIKIMEDIA

Veterans groups are urging President-elect Trump to keep former Cincinnati businessman Robert McDonald at the helm of the Department of Veterans Affairs. And, as WKSU’s M.L. Schultze reports, Ohio’s Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown says that would be justified.

Veterans Talk About President-Elect Trump

Nov 11, 2016
Veterans Day
KEVIN NIEDERMIER / WKSU

Veterans of America’s wars were honored today. At a ceremony in the Cleveland City Hall rotunda, WKSU’s Kevin Niedermier talked with veterans about their feelings on President-elect Donald Trump.

Homeless Veterans Getting a Boost From V.A.

Sep 1, 2016
V.A. logo
Veterans Administration

Cuyahoga County has received more than $2 million to help stop homelessness among military veterans. The Department of Veteran Affairs grant is part of a nationwide effort to help put homeless veterans and their families into permanent housing.

photo of pills
JO INGLES / OPR

The Ohio Supreme Court says backers of a plan to cap the price Ohio pays for drugs it buys for Medicaid, prisons and other state-run programs fell short of the signatures they need to put it before voters next year. 

The court rejected more than 10,000 signatures turned in by Ohioans for Fair Drug Prices, leaving the group more than 5,000 signatures short.

Spokesman Ged Kenslea says the group has until Aug.25 to come up with more signatures to continue its campaign to take the proposal to lawmakers and eventually voters.

photo of Sherrod Brown
WKSU

  Donald Trump laid out a 10-point plan this week to make major changes to what he calls “a very unfair system” – the VA. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has the reaction from the Ohio senator who sits on the committee overseeing the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Trump says he would replace VA Secretary Robert McDonald – the Cincinnati CEO who came over from business – with someone who is “not a political hack.” He also pledges to increase access to private medical care, and weed out bad VA employees and reward good ones.

photo of pills
JO INGLES / OPR

Lawyers for the major lobbying arm of the pharmaceutical industry -- who oppose a drug-price cap proposal that could be on this November’s ballot -- want the Ohio Supreme Court to take a look at petitions that have been filed to put the issue before voters.

The measure would require state programs to pay no more for prescription medications than the federal Department of Veterans Affairs does. Columbus attorney Kurt Tunnell is asking the state high court to invalidate some of the petitions that backers have turned in to the state.