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Family says POWs are treated better than vets at the VA

OKLAHOMA CITY – A metro family said the Oklahoma City Veterans Medical Center is not providing proper care.

Felicia Hooper knows these are her father’s last days.

The family is doing everything they can to make him comfortable. But they say their pain has escalated to anger because of how he’s been treated at the VA hospital.

“POW camps treat them better and it’s not right,” said Felicia.

The family has a long list of concerns including neglect, long waits, misdiagnosis, and simply being given the run-around with no clear medical plan.

At one point, they said he wasn’t given anything to eat or drink for 14 hours in preparation for a procedure that never took place.

“Every second is precious and those seconds that we wasted up there. For them to have the nerve, the nerve to shake his hand and say thanks for the service you did for our country, how can they sleep at night?” she questioned.

Private First Class Michael Hooper served in the Korean war.

Hooper’s youngest daughter Felicia, a nurse of twenty years, said working with the VA has always been problematic.

Felicia said, “Not one time, and I can say that God as my witness, not one time has dealing with the VA in any way been nothing but bull crap.”

The family tried to move him to a different hospital but he refused.

Felicia says her father refuses to go to another hospital, “Because when he walks into that VA hospital he holds his head up high because he served our country and it makes him proud to go to the VA.”

As time ticks away, the family only hopes his country will take pride in his medical care as their final wish to their loving father.

NewsChannel 4 spoke to the hospital by phone Friday evening. They sent the following statement:

“Access to care is a top priority.  While we can’t talk about a specific patient’s care due to privacy laws, we can tell you that we see over 91% of our established patients within 14 days of their desired appointment date.  We also do not have a waiting list for Veterans seeking medical treatment.

One of the ways our patients can help access to care is to cancel appointments at least 24 hours in advance so that appointment time can be used by a fellow Veteran.”