Follow by Email

Saturday, February 26, 2011

MORE HISTORY OF PATIENT ABUSE AT DAYTON VA

DARRELL HAMPTON    March 10, 2010


The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C

Dear Mr. Secretary:

As a result of my October 7, 2009 letter to your office the Dayton VA Medical Center Director, Mr. Guy B. Richardson, met with me to discuss my concerns about the services I have failed to receive as well as my inability to obtain full-time employment at the Medical Center.
I met with Mr. Richardson (my 4th meeting) on February 4, 2010 where we discussed how we could find resolution to my ongoing concerns. During our meeting he mentioned that I had been asking for positions for over four years and implied he couldn‘t understand why I had not moved on by now. As with my previous experience, most VA employee’s questions are normally aimed at why the Veteran still needs the services while obfuscating the fact that services have not yet been provided…… the actual agenda for the meeting. The facts that these services have not been delivered over this identical length of time is never broached and is treated as immaterial. It’s a common strategy for some executives, in controlling the conversation, make the complainant feel that he is guilty for his very own predicament. In this instance he was projecting that I was not really trying to help myself since no progress had been made since our last meeting. This takes the onus off the agency for failing to provide services and places the blame on my own lack of ingenuity to find ways to repair my dilemma. Now, it is my fault. Clever strategy, but specious.

I will assume that the eleven months I took Interferon shots (chemo therapy) and the one year of medically normal recuperation can be eliminated from his measure of how long I have been requesting these benefits. I was very sick. A more interesting question would be: what does it say about his administration that I have been applying for the same rehabilitative CWT position for real time- two years and I’m yet to receive an uninterrupted assignment? He was very polite and cogent. Mr. Richardson is actually a very intelligent nice guy in my opinion but we part ways on these major issues. He laid out a detailed comprehensive plan to repair my concerns. Then, before the meeting ended he issued a weighty proviso: “I’m not committing.”. By this caveat he effectively deleted every word he had spoken during the entire 30 minutes. I departed, convinced that no change would come. True to my assessment, four weeks have passed since this meeting and nothing has changed because “he wasn’t committing”. It was another superficial meeting about the last inconsequential meeting, lacking tangible results. We’re playing bureaucratic games here. This meeting could best be entitled, Chapter 4, “calm down the ex-drug addict Veteran and get him to stop writing letters”. Well, it didn’t work and I am not placated.

One thing I do find very puzzling, while I do not insinuate that I possess knowledge on how to run a Medical Center, I have managed a sales force on over one-hundred people before, so I do know a bit about managing. If I were the head of any organization I cannot imagine allowing infinitesimal problems like these to gain such traction under my watch. These problems should never have made it across the street, much less to your office in Washington DC. I would have ordered , three years ago, that this Veteran be given his benefits, without vacillation and this matter be removed from my desk forthwith. But….. that’s me. Why Mr. Richardson permits this plethora of cancerous complaints to metastasize is beyond me. After all, we are not talking about anything major here. It’s not as if I’ve demanded a cubicle inside his office. Instead of putting out this small fire he has allowed his staff to continually douse it with jet fuel and fan it into a World Trade Center raging inferno. This problem has morphed into a fierce intellectual fencing contest (on their part) where the Veteran (me) is forced to starve while they feign ignorance to my denial of benefits. It is obvious that the strategy is to smack me down and deny enough times until all the fight has been drained out of me and I relapse into a past life of drug abuse or simply go away or die. They are mistaken on at least two counts. I don’t know when I’m going to die but I am not going away and I am not relapsing. I should not be forced to meeting after meeting to explain “why” I want that which I’ve already earned! There is no box labeled “NO” in policy that VA employees get to check at their discretion. Neither is liking the Veteran or the Veteran shutting up in the face of patient abuse a prerequisite to receive Veterans benefits. I don’t violate VHA policy but they certainly do, all the time. Their choices are very simple, plainly laid out by legislative precedent and mandate. They do not get to exercise personal rejections on these matters.

Sir, for pellucidity, it is imperative that you know how we got here. Why am I so controversial and how I became a target of VA employees at the Dayton Medical Center? When I came here on 09/10/ 2003 they were calling WWII African American Veterans “niggers” to their faces. They were not calling them the N-word, either. They were calling them Mississippi circa 1865 cotton picking, slave reminiscent “yes suh” Massa black niggers” and I heard them! These old warriors, with their heads bowed, were terrified of them and suffered in silence. As an African American Veteran I was quite repulsed by the horror I was forced to witness and experience on a daily basis. I made a conscious decision that America should not have a federally financed “racial terror center” for African American Veterans. I decided to end this atrocity. As a result I was labeled a rabble-rouser and targeted for certain annihilation. Some employees decided to battle over my positions, saying I didn’t know my place, “whatever that means”, while others defended my position. The effort to defend patient abuse, while providing services for Veterans engendered a cognitive dissonance amongst the staff resulting in a bifurcated skirmish within the Dayton VA. For no other reason than the fact that I refused to concede and insisted policy be followed, I am now denied a CWT position, branded pernicious, maligned and totally verboten a full time position by those in decision making capacity. How is that fair? The only constant in this behavior is “ Darrell Hampton gets nothing but physical medical care, a handshake and a smile from us“. Absolutely no services from Voc Industries are for me. They have taken the discretionary authority, vicariously awarded to them to make decisions and manipulated it to deny benefits, create deprivation and fully intend to produce misery and pain. Webster’s defines actions with these results as torture. Torture is against the law in this country. For two years I have labored under this seemingly insurmountable burden and I am psychologically washed out, suffering crippling depression and I am desperately in need of my Veterans benefits while they are elated ( pay back) by their repudiation of me through the denial of these same benefits.

Here’s the thing: suppose we posit, provisionally, that I’m suffering delusions and certain VA staff aren’t the main villains in this story. But, when you consider their spiraling career endings, it makes nonsense of all the main arguments supporting their positions. While they exhaust themselves, each one convincing the other, that I am somehow suffering some psychological break, needing my intelligence validated, for some very strange reason, they keep getting found guilty of serious VHA policy violations. The overall strangeness of their mental diagnosis of me aside, let’s look at the substantive data and walk this through Sir. Here are the facts:


At one time, the local VA Police found that my confidential medical files
had been illegally accessed by over 15 employees who did not have a “need to know“ my personal medical business. One employee daringly sent my private, confidential medical information to his MSN email account to share with his peers, who had already lost their jobs. I have been erroneously charged with a sexual assault only to be exonerated after the “victim” testified she had no idea what they were talking about and words they supposedly (under oath) quoted her saying, she had never spoken. Then, a staff member charged me with “contract for hire killing“ after she called me a nigger to my face, only to have the VA attorney conclude she was lying, which ended her 28 year career. I’ve been called an “arrogant nigger” so many times I thought it was my extra special “secret” Christian name and my parents had neglected to tell me. Then, in an Hippocratic oath violating, sordid attempt to silence me, Dr. Florence Coleman literally proffered me powerful Psych meds. I gently reminded her that I was here to stop taking mind altering chemicals not to start again and politely passed on her offer to become incoherent and drivel saliva all over myself in public. Then, while deathly ill I was forced to four (4) treatment teams in one month to secure a vote to evict me from the Center. After failing three (3) times (I was very sick) they had a fourth meeting, where more staff came, to overcome the votes of the impartial members and secure the eviction. When the vote remained tied ( I repeat, I was very sick), then the MHCL Director overruled the tie. Then, they kicked me out of the Medical Center with three (3) days notice and made me homeless while I was emaciated, horribly underweight, bald, anemic, very weak and deathly vulnerable. There has been four or five employees, found guilty, who have forfeited their careers on the Cross of violating my rights, abusing me or trying to deny benefits to me. You guys call it “forced retirements“? I’ve learned, that when dealing with liars, expecting conscientiousness is not part of the equation. These are facts. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions but no one is entitled to their own facts! You see, paranoia isn’t synonymous with people not being out to get you.


 Mr. Richardson prefers to approach my concerns as isolated incidents, without connecting these incredible dots. That’s unrealistic. They must be dealt with wholly, including the history on how all of this began. I didn’t simply appear, start requesting benefits and they denied me. Patient abuse and significant psychological damage happened to me along the way. If you Google my name you will find an entire history of these events online. I have appeared at three Board of Investigations, painfully choking through emotional testimony. Each time guilty verdicts were reached. He knows what they did to me, half the Center knows! These things were not done in a corner nor in the dark. How they maltreated Darrell Hampton is common folklore around here. The entire experience was mentally devastating and physiologically eviscerating. I quietly suffered a complete mental and physical breakdown where I would regularly awake trembling with cold sweats in the middle of the night! This all has taken a great toll and I still can’t re-tell these experiences without hyperventilating. Having to tolerate these wrongs and respond appropriately while taking weekly Interferon shots and 40 Ribavirin pills a week was thoroughly enervating for my equilibrium. American Citizens from all over this country have called me or sent emails to offer sympathy for how I was treated by the VA, but the Director acts as if it was no big deal. It was a huge deal!

Honestly, I have not recovered well and I continue to awake 3-4 nights a week, in the middle of the night in a full blown rage of excruciating psychological suffering. Where we are now is quite simple: These employees were very unsavory and had irrevocably spoiled past their ethical expiration dates long before my arrival. Some of them had over 30 years of service and now their peers are paying me back. They can’t do that! Some of their peers were actually “on” the Boards but the evidence of patient abuse, violations of HYPPA and lying under oath was so prodigious they had no choice but to render a finding of Guilty! They’re blaming me because their buddies got busted! I didn’t commit the offenses, their buddies did! This is a prima fascia case of retaliation and retribution. And they know it! They currently justify their denials under the disingenuous premise that they are now “scared“ of me. They’re not afraid to acquiesce in abuse nor too anxious to appear at three Boards and gallantly tell malicious lies under oath nor to brazenly, mendaciously write statements to the VA Police. Nor to corner me (while I was very ill) and subject me to fulminating demands that I drop the charges against their friends. They howled to wake the dead and blocked out the sun. They were not successful. Now, all of a sudden, they are afraid to be anywhere near me…… .Really? I find this rationale deficient and I reject this hypothesis. They are not afraid. Instead, they are livid that I stood up to them. I am kind, polite and a gentleman, I simply don’t countenance the beating up on sick and weak vulnerable Veterans. I suggest anyone who veto’s my opinions should first, get sick and be mistreated, opposed to superciliously pontificating and I will debate their painful ”experienced” attitudes. For that matter, I don’t particularly care for child abusers or sexual predators either.

I don’t know if some of these people have been doing this so long that they have lost the ability to distinguish candid sincerity or not. Some seem hopelessly unable to stop adjudicating America’s Veterans as no more than tax-dollar exploiting lazy Hoboes. They may just be simply burnt out.
In spite of the mental health injuries I have endured at their hands, I would do it again! I realize that decisions have consequences but enough is enough. They have lied about CWT positions for two years. I have approximately 10 letters of denial from HR for positions I’m qualified to fill, citing benign generic reasons. For all intent and purposes, they have effectively issued a Constitutionally shredding, furtive “Bill of Attainder” against me to deny opportunities on this Center. This type of conspicuous retaliation and manifest retribution is specifically prohibited by Article I, Section 9 of the Constitution, and they know it! They can not collude to privately try, convict and deny me benefits. This statue represents a recognition that federal officials may not strip citizens of well settled constitutional protections against mistreatment simply because they don’t like them. They can’t pretend to be obtuse while “fortuitously” penalizing my First Amendment free speech rights. Like it or not, we have rules in this country. This type of behavior is the antithesis to what the United States of America represents. Creating outrageously illegal strategies like these, then feigning ignorance and innocence while simultaneously advancing these depredating tactical maneuvers should not be sanctioned at an American Government Taxpayer funded facility that is emblazoned with banners of “Veterans First”.

Mr. Secretary: With all of the respect that a Four Star General has earned, I say to you: It is revolting enough that I am consistently made to feel like a rape victim who is repeatedly molested because I reported the sadistic rapist to the proper authorities. Like you, I wore my uniform and I served our country. I carried our blood stained banner! I have never been in combat but I have spent many cold, wet, pitched black sleepless nights bravely guarding my country with an M-16 slung over my shoulder, peeping at dark shadows, while they were warm and cozy in their beds and I refuse to be blacklisted by the very same people I have risked my life to protect! Because I’m not obsequious and denounce patient abuse I get treated as if I am Osama bin Laden or Khalid Sheikh Muhammad!? With all due respect, Sir, I am not a foreign terrorist. I am an American Citizen, I was an Army soldier and I am an Honorably Discharged Veteran !

They are entrenched in their positions and they will not stop unless they are ordered to do so. I honestly believe some of these people, suffering delusions of grandeur, think authority has been conveyed to them by title deed and they answer to no one. How else could Frank Value, the Asst. Service Chief of EMS, have the unmitigated audacity to utter the words; “Darrell Hampton will never get a job here if I have anything to do with it“! I heard him say it, Sir. Immediately after he was promoted in Dec 08 I was “laid off” from my CWT assignment due to “lack of funds”. This was the first time in the Dayton VA’s 140 year history that a Veteran has been laid off from a CWT position for “lack of funds“. Other Veterans were hired in my same position. He can’t do that! Apparently, when Mr. Value isn’t too busy getting convicted for publicly disgracing the VA via soliciting paid sex acts from local undercover Dayton police officers, he must envision that he is the Asst. Service Chief of a Swastika marked, Adolf Hitler Brown Shirted “Fuhrer’s Party“. That’s Un-American!

I’m finished jumping through hoops. It’s over! I will not be denied one tittle of my rights.
The statue of limitations on their specious opinions and unscrupulous Machiavellian games has expired. I’m writing because it is my hope that you will get into the weeds on these matters.
Contrary to popular opinion many, many VA employees thank me for the positions I’ve taken and want to shake my hand or pat my shoulder for surviving these horrible experiences. I am not alone in my opinions about the people who abuse their authority here. We certainly can’t all be crazy.
I must admit Sir, the physical medicine here is excellent. I don’t think I have ever been dissatisfied with the physical medicine until the MHCL interferes with medicine or Surgery. Dr. Florence Coleman often demands that patients, with a drug history, not be given pain meds after surgery. Evidently, she thinks that if a recovering addict has pain from surgery relieved, a relapse is imminent. This is an incredible discretionary enabled authority but……. they make the rules.

Well, there you have it Sir. The hour is late and the time is now. Please end this madness.
 
My Very Best Regards,
 
Darrell Hampton
 
 
DARRELL HAMPTON

The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D. C.


Dear Mr. Secretary:                                       August 11, 2010



I want to thank you for any input you made as a result of my last letter to your office. Since then I have been to two (2) interviews for positions at the Dayton VA. The first one I mistakenly thought was a full-time posting and had to decline the interview. The latest was on Wednesday August 4, 2010. After submitting applications for over four (4) years it was nice to finally be considered.

The reason for this letter is that the last position I applied and was interviewed for was the MyhealtheVet Communications Specialist. This position, per the KSA’s required a background in Sales, Advertising and Marketing. My work history includes all three, several years in advertising and over 25 years in the Insurance Industry, the last 10 years as a General Agent running my own Agency. Plus, I have actively used the “MyhealtheVet” site for service for at least three (3) months for Vet services. In short, this position is tailor-made for a person with my background.

My interview was great. During the interviewing process those doing the screening continually gave rave reviews. I cannot imagine that they gave the Director, Mr. Richardson, anything less. My competition for the position was a current VA employee, who is a young female Patient Advocate and another Veteran. Since the initial interview Mr. Richardson has called the other Veteran and the young female in for a second interview but he is yet to contact me. He interviewed the VA employee and gave her the job on Friday and shipped her off to training already! This was nothing less than another deliberate decision to block me from employment and to choose, before even interviewing, who he had decided to give this position to. He can’t do that! Worse yet, he told the other Veteran that a decision would be made within the next two weeks when he knew he had already determined who would get the job! Now, not only have I been cheated out of a job I’m eminently qualified to hold, he has the other Veteran sitting in the Residential Program praying and hoping for a position he already knew he had no intention of rewarding him. What kind of person operates in this manner? Mr. Richardson appears to think he is “entitled” to award positions to whomever he wants while denying opportunity to Vets or the “most qualified candidate“ for the position. As he so boldly told me, when I demanded the benefits I was entitled to “Nobody is entitled to anything, Mr. Hampton”. Well that same rules applies to him: He is not ”entitled” to makes decisions of this sort! This is breathtaking, to say the least! Guy B. Richardson is attempting to make it appear he has conducted a fair, thorough evaluation while advancing his diabolical goal of “putting me in my place” via denying me a position at the Dayton VA. I told you, previously, that these people think they answer to no one. I thought they at least respected your office. I was mistaken. His deceptive appearance of fairness will not suffice in this matter. It is time for him to move on to his next duty assignment!

Mr. Richardson has lined up strategy to justify NOT hiring me and being able to say “I hired the most qualified person who was not Darrell Hampton“. That is a lie! This move would extend the past stratagem of Constitutional violations, per Article 1, Section 9, forbidding Bill of Attainders against American citizens, which is the factual history of his office. I do not believe that your office is uninitiated in sophisticated thought and is ignorant of this bureaucratic scheme.
First, the Veteran who is being considered is “homeless” and I have been living independently for the past four (4) years. Secondly, I have more successful experience in sales, advertising, marketing and “communicating” than the young female employee has existed on this earth! Thirdly, I would respectfully remind you the position is titled “Communications Specialist” and I would put my “proven” communication skills up against any persons currently applying for this position nationwide, let alone at the Dayton VA. This is an atrocious unfair decision!

I don’t remember when I have witnessed another Veteran, currently located within the VA’s homeless Domiciliary being seriously considered for anything more than a janitorial position much less a GS-11 position. Mr. Richardson, like his other VA employees, appears to have a history of considering America’s Veterans not worth more than cleaning toilets or mopping floors at the VA Centers so this specious GS-11 move is definitely out of the norm for him. Even for a Veteran with my history of professional business acumen he prefers that I walk around the Center, with a heat index of over 100 degrees, picking up cigarette butts and going home with soaking wet underwear than to provide a way forward to redeem my life and restoration as a productive member of society.

What does it profit a Veteran to expend energy and time learning the VA policies and benefits if staff only become angry when you request them? I am simply trying to obtain my rights and my benefits while they seem obsessed with making sure I don’t think I’m smarter than they are. This is puerile!

For example: Mr. Secretary, had you been the Director of the Dayton VA during the 2005-2006 year and a patient wrote you at least once every two weeks (like I did Guy Richardson) that I was being tortured by your staff while taking weekly Interferon shots and 40 Ribavirin pills; would you have done NOTHING?! Mr. Richardson watched me weekly as I walked into the Medical Tower, he saw my emaciated condition, he waved and he smiled but he adamantly refused to exercise his executive authority to put a stop to my suffering at the hands of his staff. It was only “after” I began to bring formal charges and he was placed in an untenable position of having to respond that he ordered Boards and they were found guilty by a jury of their peers. Is that what you would have done, Sir?

Is that considered blatant “Dereliction of Duty” or “Conduct Unbecoming of a Federal Employee“?
I am requesting your office intervene here because I believe he has violated my Constitutional rights, VHA policy and discriminated against me, searching for a ways to deny me employment. The fact that we are both African Americans is irrelevant, it is what it is! Like the employees before him who have previously been found guilty of violating my rights he is personalizing my experience here and has joined the side of those employees who are determined to deny me opportunity on this Center. Each and every one of his responses have been spurious and I have lost confidence in any words that proceed from his mouth. He’s a nice guy, I just don’t believe anything he says anymore. When he speaks, even his own staff disregards any veracity. I have lost count of the number of VA employees who have asked me to type letters for them against Mr. Richardson. Each time I have declined because that is simply not something I want to become involved with and I realize there are two sides to every story. It is time for Mr. Richardson to move on to his next duty station. Military equivalent of a One-Star General or not he needs to be removed from service here and sent home!
Mr. Secretary I have questions for you: Sir, do you agree with the way I have been treated by “Your” Veterans Health Administration? Are you going to write my life off and deny me the opportunity to redeem my life and provide for my family? Do you also believe that ‘once an addict, always an addict“ and recovery is a delusion? Do you co-sign the actions of these employees?

If you do, then I need to know your answer now so that I can go another direction and seek remedies elsewhere. I need to know your answer, Sir. I’m writing you Sir and I need an answer from you, not from Mr. Guy B. Richardson, Sir. He has already arrogantly told me, to my face, he is not going to do “anything” to change his direction towards me! His determination to deny employment and treat me like some derelict mental patient is a direct attack on me and my family’s survival. His recent moves confirm his words. What are you going to do Sir?
My Very Best regards,
Darrell Hampton


DARRELL HAMPTON 

 
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D. C.
Dear Sir,                                                                                             August 16,2010


After I received the “Qualified, forwarded for consideration but another person was selected” letter from the Dayton VA I wrote you my perception as to what exactly I perceived Guy B. Richardson had done. That was my opinion and I assume, like any intelligent person, you would assess it as no more than “my opinion” until additional details are revealed.

Let me relate to you what has transpired since my last missive to you.

On Friday, August 13, 2010, at approximately 2:00 pm I was at the Dayton VA doing my CWT job, picking up cigarette butts outside and around the Medical Center. It was at least a 105 degree- heat indexed day. After doing my job and feeling completely overwhelmed by the temperature and the blazing sun, dripping with perspiration, I walked into the Medical Center for a badly needed cool air respite and drink of cold water.

As I entered the building I saw the Director, Guy Richardson walking towards the entrance, heading towards his office. I intentionally stopped, not wanting to interact with him (remember I have just been overlooked, in my opinion, for a position I feel I was the most qualified person to receive) and I always protect my emotions, sooooo I stopped dead in my tracks. I also desperately needed to gather myself; I was sweating profusely and in dire need of a cool drink of water. Mr. Richardson, not seeing me at first, rounded the corner toward his office.

Upon doing so he caught eyesight of me in his peripheral vision. He made a deliberate “U” turn and walked towards me until he reached six (6) inches from my face and he said “Mr., Hampton, you look a lot different today. The last time I saw you, you were all “suited up”! Then, he burst out laughing and walked away to his office. He was making fun of the contrast of how I looked (suited up) when I appeared for the interview and antagonizing me with the fact that he had intentionally denied me the job and I was still outside burning up, picking up cigarette butts. How despicable!
I was immediately offended as I felt this was his way of slapping me in the face with the fact he had cunningly denied me a position I should have received and I had no recourse and I was literally dumbstruck that a “Center Director‘ would conduct himself in this manner! I mean, I knew he didn’t particularly care for me but this was the most blatant derision I have ever encountered.


Sir, I operate from a position that I do not know everything, neither do I consider myself the sharpest knife in the drawer. Fifty-seven (57) years on this earth has taught me there are many sharp knives in the drawer. That said, before I ascertain my position on any particular matter I run my experiences past about ten (10) people who have intelligence, formal education and the life experience I consider worthy of ethical and valuable non-cynical descriptions of what I perceive to be clearly inappropriate behaviors. Some are current high-ranking VA employees. After all that I have been through it is not unrealistic to expect me to develop a cynical attitude so I caution myself “before” I ascertain my experiences. What follows is an honest, non embellished, non-exaggerated moment by moment description of what has happened.

I reversed my direction and left the Medical Tower. Not willing to believe what had just transpired I embarked on a mission to see what the perception of “uninterested parties” might be on this experience. I called or physically spoke to about 8-10 people to hear what their opinion might be about my recent experience. The majority consensus was “he is taunting you and attempting to create an inappropriate response from you in order to degrade your creditability “. Others said he was “rubbing your face” in the fact he has hurt you by denying you a job and that there is NOTHING you could do about it. Incredulous! I don’t remember ever being so humiliated and demeaned in my entire life. I felt more pride as a homeless heroin addict, eight (8) years ago, than I did in the midst of this experience and I fear that without your immediate intervention, this will not end well.

What does it profit a Veteran to work so hard to redeem his life if employees, Mr. Richardson specifically, continue to treat the Veteran as if he just stopped using illegal drugs last night? He has ZERO respect for the men and women who have hazarded their lives for this country and he insists on judging them as if their only self worth is determined by their last failure, never leaving room for redemption on any level. His dedication does not appear to be towards this country nor to the men and women who have served. Instead his arrogance and superiority has become his dominating character and that person is the recipient of his allegiance. Mr. Guy B. Richardson is the exact type of person who was atypical of why I refused to come to the VA for treatment eight (8) years ago. Edith Darden, the homeless Vets Social Worker, would sit next to me in the homeless shelter and plead with me to allow her to help me. I would tell her “no, those people treat Vets like dogs”. After she finally convinced me to come I was assaulted by the MHCL but I received excellent physical medicine so it was six in one hand and half dozen in the other. The rest is history as I’ve written in my March 10, 2010 letter.
I have previously stated that I thought Mr. Richardson was a nice guy, I now disabuse myself of any and all previous statements. What kind of Director of VA Medical Center treats Honorably Discharged Veterans in this way? As I mentioned before, he has cheated me out of a position and he currently has another Honorably Discharged Veteran in the Domiciliary praying for his decision on a job he has already awarded to one of his favorite Black female employees. As an African American I personally resent Mr. Richardson placing me in this adversarial position but I refuse to give him a pass simply because we share the same melanin. That is not the test, Sir! The test is “whether his actions were intentionally purposed to harm me”. I have concluded they were! His arrogance was breathtaking and I exaggerate NOT! My description does not include one sentence of hyperbole! This is an accurate factual account of the events as they transpired


I’ve added or left out Nothing!

Sir, I have enormous respect for your service to our country and I remember how you stood up
during the hearings on the run up to war with Iraq, on the cost and what it would take to win. I know the price you paid for telling the truth. I’ve had a microcosmic experience here of what it feels like to be the only person in the room willing to speak truth to power. I would never disrespect your office nor waste your time with minuscule issues or dishonest allegations. I’m telling you the truth!
Guy B. Richardson is out of control and has allowed his arrogant propensity for nefarious conduct to dominate his entire behavior. This is incredible and had I not been the intended victim of his actions, I would not believe this happened. Seventy-two hours has passed and I remain incredulously in shock.

But, I was there and I saw it and I heard it.

Will you PLEASE address this situation? I have to see this man every single week day which provides hourly opportunities for him to insult and abuse me. I am a CWT Patient!
When the offender is the “Director” I have no choice but to bring these matters to your office.
It is past time to reassign Mr. Richardson, retire Mr. Richardson or do whatever it is that your office does when the leading executive looses complete control.

Need I remind you, Sir, I am a United States Citizen, an Honorably Discharged Veteran and a VA Patient. Nothing less than, Psychologically speaking, this Director is emotionally and mentally assaulting me and is guilty of “Patient Abuse” per your own VHA policies!

What would have happened if I were a lesser man who had less control of my emotions? This incident could have resulted in an act of violence or worse. Not only have I earned better than this, according to Article 1 Section 9 of our Constitution, Title 38 and VHA policy, I should NEVER be denied benefits, denied employment, forced to be traumatized, insulted, humiliated nor provoked into an inappropriate response in this manner. According to VHA policy, it is “my perception” that is the controlling feeling here and I perceive this as “hostile harassment“ requiring urgent intervention! How much more mortification, deep shame and dishonor am I expected to tolerate? I am running on fumes, Sir! I am only a man. At least now I know “why” Mr. Richardson allowed his staff to torture me for four years. I don’t think he likes me very much, which was on pellucid display August 13, 2010 at about 2:00 pm! Well, let’s be brutally honest: He demands obsequious sycophantic behavior, which is ultimately why he choose the black female for the GS-11position and I adamantly refuse to oblige or accommodate him so he makes sure I am denied a job or appropriate treatment in return!

My reputation for veracity and an eidetic “documentation” of personal events proceed me.
In closing, my family is very upset. I have begged them not to get involved here but they have told me they will no longer sit on the sidelines and watch this transparent spectacle of abuse to continue. I am positive, if not already, you will hear from members of my family very soon.
I am requesting your immediate EMERGENCY interposition in this matter, SIR!

My Very Best Regards,

Darrell Hampton
 
 

DAYTON DAILY NEWS ARTICLE

By Ben Sutherly, Staff Writer
Updated 10:43 PM Friday, February 25, 2011
DAYTON — The Ohio State Dental Board on Friday declined a request to retire the license of the 81-year-old dentist whose infection control practices were at the heart of an investigation into whether 535 veterans were exposed to blood-borne pathogens at the Dayton VA Medical Center’s dental clinic.
“The Board will not accept your request for retirement at this time,” the board’s executive director, Lili C. Reitz, wrote in a letter to Dr. Dwight M. Pemberton of Centerville. The letter did not give a reason for the denial.
“I can tell you that in the past couple years, the few requests for retirement that were not accepted were due to the fact that there was an active investigation ongoing,” Reitz told the Dayton Daily News by e-mail.
Dayton VA officials announced Feb. 8 that a dentist in its dental clinic failed to change latex gloves between appointments and sterilize dental instruments.
At least 535 veterans are being offered free screenings to see if they were infected with Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV at the clinic between 1992 and July 2010. Most have been contacted, a VA spokesman said Friday.
The Dayton Daily News confirmed the dentist is Pemberton, who retired from the VA on Feb. 11. He had been at the Dayton VA since 1976, and was licensed in 1955. When contacted Friday, Pemberton declined comment.

VA SECRETARY REFUSES TO RESPOND TO VETERANS

October 19, 2010
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C
Dear Mr. Secretary:
Since August 16, 2010 I have written multiple letters to your office informing you of what, in my opinion, has been a complete ignoring and violations of VHA policy by the Medical Center Director. Your staff has not even given my complaints the consideration of an answer to my concerns.
I laid out undisputable evidence describing Guy B. Richardson as being inextricably connected to actions that can only be described as “patient abuse’ as well as violations of your own policies and procedures. Yet, I have been given no response.
Sir, what rules does your Department of Veterans Affairs operate under?
Are the Veterans the only participates in this service expected to obey the rules?
Are your Medical Center Directors exempt from accountability?
Is my status, as an Honorably Discharged Veteran, of no significance?
Have you no intention of remedying these violations and making me whole?
Am I not so much as worthy decency and a response from your office?
I have been patient and I have followed the rules. What more am I expected to do?
How can anyone in your office say they support a philosophy of “Veterans 1st” when I have been the recipient of such terrible treatment from your office?
Sincerely Yours,
Darrell Hampton

GUY RICHARDSON MISTREATS VETERANS AND DENYS JOBS

DARRELL HAMPTON
Mr. Guy B. Richardson, Director
Dayton VA Medical Center
4100 West Third Street
Dayton, Ohio 45418
Dear Mr. Richardson,                                    August 23, 2010


The first time I met you, in August 2005, the very first words you said to me were “ Mr. Hampton, my motto is Veterans first”. My eidetic memory continues to serve me well. Your conduct, since that day, have proven your words to be factually false. My very best observation is that you deceived me from the very first day I met you. Now, finally, my entire experience here makes perfect sense and clearly explains why you allowed Bill O’Brien and his staff to continue torturing me for eleven months when I was taking chemo therapy and writing you, detailing their abusive behaviors: You don’t particularly care for Veterans, especially this one. You did nothing until I brought “Formal Charges” which placed you in an untenable position where your own career was being jeopardized. Now, I see that you had no problem with the way I was treated. This also explains why, even though guilty verdicts were reached, you have never even offered an apology for my traumatic suffering under your watch. When Patient Abuse happens, a jaundiced eye towards potential liability and your career exposure are not the only concerns a Director should have. There is also a “Victim” involved. I was that victim.

On Friday August 13, 2010, I walked into the Medical Tower, thirsty and soaking wet with sweat from being outside, picking up cigarette butts, my CWT job. You were headed to your office when you saw me out of your peripheral vision and you deliberately made an about face to interact with me. You walked up to me, until you were about six (6) inches from my face and you said “Mr. Hampton, you look a lot different from the last time I saw you” (speaking of the day of my interview for the full-time position), you continued, “the last time I saw you, you were all suited up”. Then you laughed out loud and walked away. This was your way of making fun of the fact that you defrauded me out of a position I was eminently qualified to obtain. It was a premeditated slap in my face and I felt the sting. Your behavior was as reprehensible as it was irresponsibly stunningly unprofessional.

To insure I was not cynically misreading your behavior I sought the opinions of 10 people on what transpired that day. From my personal Clergy to a regular homemaker, all reasonable persons, the conclusions were unanimous. The words they choose to describe your behavior were: intentionally disrespectful, outrageous, offensive, rude, and degrading. One person, a VA staff member, expressed concern for my safety and said your words were “filled with such contempt” for me as a person they were afraid for me. You certainly don’t get to treat a Veteran in this manner. I hope you got the catharsis you needed Friday, August 13, 2010 because you will never get another opportunity to humiliate me. There will be no future issues that will rise to the level of your participation in my treatment at the Dayton VA so no additional communication between you and I will be necessary.

Your palpable opinion that anyone who lacks a formal education is beneath you is not one that I share. A cursory look at America’s story reveals a history of able intelligent leaders who lacked formal education from Abraham Lincoln to Frederick Douglas to Bill Gates and Louis Farrakhan. The essential diversity of American life seems to have escaped you. While you may dislike, you have no right to treat other people, who have chosen a different path to intellect, as if they are less than you and you certainly have no right to disrespect America‘s Veterans in this contemptuous manner. You also have no right to continue discounting the veracity of my past allegations once they were proven true. Whether or not you like the fact that I have chosen to refer my concerns to Secretary Shinseki does not authorize you to penalize me nor single me out for derisive Patient Abuse! Your conduct is unpardonable. One year ago I decided it was unprofitable to meet with you again as you’ve proven you had no interest in righting any wrongs. You even told me, to my face, that you had no intention on doing anything to correct these wrongs. It is your performance that engendered my letters to Washington. It is your deceitful conduct that created this mess. You are the person who mislead me into believing you were interested in doing what was right and fair when your real goals are deceptions, trickery and revenge. You are 100% responsible for my letters and this debacle! For five (5) years it has been your choice to “say” the right things while never lifting a finger to “do the right things”. Like Bill O’Brien, before you, you are the one who choose to feverishly search for ways to meet the letter of the regulation while intentionally violating the spirit of policy and fair play.
You do remember that you make your living providing services to “Honorably Discharged Veterans”, don‘t you? Well, I am an Honorably Discharged Veteran! As an American Citizen and a Veteran you had no right to furtively steal a full-time opportunity from me then to double down by demeaning me to my face. Your supercilious attitude has blinded you to the very reason the American people fund this agency with their precious tax dollars: to provide a redemptive healing way forward for America’s Veterans. You are intellectually detached from the real “Veteran’s world” where we do get better and the fact that our Veterans benefits are actually important to us. Instead, you are consumed with executing revenge against anyone who dares disagree with you. This Center belongs to the American people and they lent it to the Veterans, not to you! You violate laws and policy and incredulously believe you are so exceptional your actions are invisible and you will escape the consequences. Like most duplicitous people, you believe you can receive good results while doing bad things to others. You only get out of life what you put into it. You will reap what you sow and there will be appropriate compensation for you hurting America’s vulnerable Veterans.

Congratulations, Mr. Guy B. Richardson! You hurt me and your mission is accomplished. Please tell me, Sir: What did you win? I would say that I am sorry for exasperating you, over the years, by surviving your attempted murder but I try not to lie and I “really” am not ! No matter how many times you depict me as a unhinged mental patient and attempt to dismiss my accounts of what you and your staff do, the truth will surface, it always does. Even your own VAOIG has written that my integrity is beyond reproach. You know what your staff did and you know what you did! I would think a person in your position would have more self control but amazingly, you just couldn‘t resist letting me know you defrauded and damaged me on purpose. Did you forget I was a Patient or did that not even enter into your calculations? Either way, any vague feigned innocuous explanation of your actions will not suffice, this time. My reputation for veracity proceeds all of my documents. You were humiliating me, smugly smirking in my face that you had successfully defrauded me and you were attempting to antagonize me by insulting me that I was “still in a heat indexed 100 degree temperature picking up cigarette butts“. Not only were your actions unprofessional and vacant, that is “Patient Abuse”! According to VHA policy my perception is the controlling factor in determining whether or not I felt you abused me. That is my perception and the conclusion of other reasonable persons who would quickly adjudicate you as guilty, Mr. Richardson.

I get it, now. Your desire is that I remain indigent, suffer, and that I never have success, provide for my family or live a decent life on your watch! And, that makes sense to you? I used to wonder why you always smiled and repeatedly stated, to me, how grateful you were just to have a job in this economy. I thought you were just oblivious to the pain I felt, applying for but not receiving a job. I was wrong there, too. You were intentionally rubbing my face in my suffering and delighting in my pain. Jesus Christ! These are the attributes of a sociopath and you have provided irrefutable evidence. You win, but you are sick, Sir. I hope nobody ever treats your loved ones in this cruel manner.

I’m certainly not the only one who sees through your obfuscations, many people see through your disingenuous conduct and tens of people are eager to hold you accountable. Over the past five (5) years many of your employees have recounted stories of you disrespecting them, asking me to assist them in writing charges against you. I have refused, always saying you needed more time to get acclimated to the Center. I was your biggest fan. I now disabuse myself of all past affirmations of your character. I have actually spent the past week apologizing to some for not seeing your true distinctive person, being na├»ve and exhibiting faith in you. I’ll concede, you’re good, you had me, but now all the lights are on, your true personality has been revealed and your tendency towards immoral corruption is no longer secret. I, personally, don’t believe you have ever said an honest word to me.

As a direct response to this missive, like you successfully defrauded me out of the full-time position, I anticipate that you will design some depredating bureaucratic scheme to end my meager CWT position soon and justify it with some deceptive stratagem that will disguise your real motives.

The Dayton VA needs leadership that can bring our various cultures together and not divide us with puerile administrative philosophies of “Us against Them”. Hubris and Arrogance have never been defined nor highlighted as qualities that described any positive professional leadership trait.

I am now asking that you oblige my final patient centered request of you: I desperately need you to find another “Toy” to play with so please do not ever speak to me again. I will no longer acknowledge your presence and I am politely asking that you do the same for me. If you attempt to approach me, for any reason, I will walk away from you. I have zero desire to know you, we have nothing to talk about and I am completely embarrassed that you are the Director here. Friday, August 13, 2010 was your curtain call opportunity to humiliate, intimidate and commit acts of “Patient Abuse” against me.

Per the VHA policy, that you routinely rebuff, that is also a right that I have, as a patient. I need you to abandon your reckless ambition and cease and desist from distressing my life through your denying, tormenting, antagonizing, harassing, torturing and stop bullying me! You don’t like me. I get it. PLEASE exercise some self discipline and LEAVE ME ALONE !

Impassionedly and Emphatically Yours,
Darrell Hampton

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Dayton VA Dental Clinic Malfeasance V

DARRELL HAMPTON

February 22, 2011

 
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C
Dear Mr. Secretary:
How did this happen at the Dayton VA Medical Center? How could multiple employees allow another employee, Dr. Pemberton in particular, to provide health care to America’s Veterans using criminally negligent unsanitary methods and no one, not one person was moved to stop him from doing so? How did this happen in a facility that was created to fulfill President Lincoln's promise "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans“?
Well, I have my opinion and I’d like to share it with you, Sir.
At the Dayton VA so much energy is expended trying to deliver the minimum amount of services necessary to meet the letter of VHA policy while simultaneously violating the spirit of the same policies, something like this was bound to happen. This is not a finding of guilt of all employees at the Dayton VA. As I have written previously, there are literally hundreds of great employees providing services here and they are just as heartsick about these revelations, if not more so, than the Veterans who have been exposed. Watching their peers mistreat America’s Veterans while being concerned with their income streams and providing for their families has created a cognitive dissonance that can easily be seen in their faces on a daily basis. The knowledge that even the Director couldn’t care less and is in it only for the money hurts them as much as it hurts our Veterans.
Over the past five (5) years since Guy Richardson has been the Director I have petitioned him on several occasions for an increase in the pay Veterans receive for Incentive therapy (IT) which was $1.50 per hour and Compensated Therapy (CWT). Which was $7.00 per hour. Mr. Richardson fought me tooth and nail for over two years incessantly finding outlandish reasons, justified by archaic readings of policy to deny this increase. Finally, after two years he reluctantly relented and allowed the increase, he raised IT to $2.10, a sixty-cent raise and CWT to $7.70 per hour, a seventy-cent increase. Policy dictates that IT pay may not exceed 50% of the minimum wage in the presiding state. In Ohio the rate is $7.30 per hour which means he could have raised it to $3.30 per hour. He choose $2.10! At the same time he was vigorously waging battle to deny even this modest increase Mr. Richardson was receiving close to $200,000.00 per year in income and additionally he received thousands of dollars in annual bonus’s. Over the five and an half years Guy Richardson has been the Director here he has received over one-million dollars in salary and close to seventy-thousand dollars in annual bonus’s yet he could not see the need to increase IT pay or CWT pay more than seventy cents per hour and adamantly fought my efforts, dedicating hours upon hours to thwart my request. Had Mr. Richardson expended half the amount of time overseeing his staff as he did trying to defeat my appeal for additional funds for veterans maybe, just maybe he could have halted the spread of the potential infection of blood born pathogens to our Veterans. His primacy is always “How can I give Veterans less and stay within VHA policy“. This prevailing “Us Against Them” mentality is so determined that it transparently dominates every priority for this Director and some of his staff who religiously follow his lead in a “Jim Jones‘ kind of way.
Effective January 1, 2011 Mr. Richardson reduced the amount of travel pay a Veteran receives to come to appointments at the Dayton VA. Last year if you lived in the county and had an appointment you received $8.30 in travel pay. Now, it is strictly issued by mileage at the VHA legally permissible $0.45.5 per mile. Now, let’s look at this logic: My home is 2.8 miles from the Dayton VA, as the crow flies. But, Veterans are not “crows and neither do we fly to get to the Center“. I, like many Vets, utilize public transportation. It takes me three buses to get to the Dayton VA from my home. The bus fare here is $1.75 plus another $.25 for a transfer, which can only be used once. This means I have to pay another $1.75 to ride the third bus to arrive at the Medical Center. Total cost is $3.75 to get to my appointment and the same amount to get back home for a grand total of $7.50. By Mr. Richardson’s calculations, again using the minimum amount that he is allowed to pay because I live 2.8 miles from the Center I receive less than $1.50 in travel pay. It’s not even enough to get there much less get back home. And…………this makes sense to him. I repeat, he strains to find ways within VHA policy that will permit him to provide less, violating the spirit of the policies while meeting the letter of the same. When it comes to his responsibility as a Medical Center Director, if he paid as much attention to the letter of his duties the dental clinic problem would not be major leading news story in every evening broadcast in America, even CNN ran a seven minute story about the Dayton VA.
There is a translucent pattern here but if you look closely it becomes pellucid: let me help make it completely transparent for you Sir.
The Vocational Rehabilitation Department at the Dayton VA has approximately eight (8) Veterans currently working in jobs contracted to their department. I have written Mr. Richardson so many letters about how they are failing to meet their job responsibilities that I have lost count. I’ve met with Mr. Richardson on at least four occasions, two of those meetings was on this subject matter alone. Each time he promised me he would repair this problem, shook my hand, looked me in the eye, smiled and assured me that he would “take care of it”. He makes great eye contact when he lies to you. Nothing has changed. Not one single thing in the five years he has been at the helm! The Bedford Mass VA has over 800 Veterans working in their CWT program, Houston VA has over 500 Veterans working in their CWT program, Dayton VA has 8 Veterans working in their CWT program. This has been the case since before Mr. Richardson arrived on the Center and like the Dental Clinic’s 18 years of malfeasance, the Vocational Rehabilitation Department is guilty of the same. Also, like the Dental Clinic neglect, nobody holds anybody accountable for failing to do their jobs! No one, in Voc Rehab does a single thing all day everyday except meet with Veterans and project upon them how lazy we are, how much of a manipulator we are and how we are not really trying to find a job when the truth of the matter is the staff is projecting their very own failures onto our Veterans. They “act” oblivious to the current economic downfall and demand that Veterans look for non-existent jobs. When the Veteran falls short they then use those failures as an excuse to deny IT or CWT benefits and have the audacity to document this obfuscation in their files. The real truth is they are not leaving their offices nor making any effort to produce contracts for the Veteran. Some counselors have even instructed Veterans to go to the State civilian job center to look for a job. If all of the Veterans followed this advice why do we need to pay them for this instruction? They could just as easily hang a sign on the wall and become unemployed themselves, saving the VA thousands in payroll costs!
After five years of complaining about this I have been given a part-time 4 hours a day CWT picking up cigarette butts around the Center. My background is as a professional, I sold Insurance for most of my adult life. This was a sincere effort to humiliate me in hopes that I would refuse and lay the foundation for Guy Richardson to say “he doesn’t really want a job” but it didn’t work. I accepted the position and I report to work on time, everyday and I pick up cigarette butts around the center. If there was a position available picking up duck droppings with my bare hands on the center I am sure he would have assigned it to me and claimed, with great eye contact, it was not with prior calculation.
We desperately need your help Sir. I have written you and written you until my fingers are worn out. I have laid out verifiable evidence and I have made a solid case for the charge of serial malfeasance on the part of those in management and authority here. What will it take for you to order a repair of this facility, Sir? Do we have to wait until bodies start falling over dead and it becomes an even worse national disgrace? We need help Sir. Guy Richardson is NOT going to do right by us! We are broke and we are hungry but he won’t even provide us with a meal on VA grounds and will arrogantly tell us so to our faces. While he violates every EEO protocol, handing out jobs to whomever he pleases, covering his violations with lies and schemes to deny Veterans full-time employment, or even a therapeutic job, who will stop him from hurting us?
He is NOT going to change and he is NOT going help us get well and become productive members of society again. Our flags are flying upside down sending the universal signal that all soldiers recognize, to your office, a soldier is in dire distress.
 
Sincerely Yours,
Darrell Hampton

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Dayton VA Dental Clinic Malfeasance PART IV

The Medical Center Director wants us to beleive, after holding 1400 meetings with these people over the past 5 years,  he knew NOTHING! Yeah and I'm a white man, too! Do you believe that also?

Lawmakers urge investigation into oversight of VA dental clinic
By
DAYTON — Three Dayton area congressmen are calling for an investigation into the lack of oversight that allowed a dentist at a Dayton VA Medical Center clinic to violate medical standards for nearly two decades, potentially exposing hundreds of veterans to blood-borne pathogens.
On Wednesday, Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio; Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio; and Rep. Mike Turner, R-Centerville, sent a letter to Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki, urging him to order a review of oversight practices at the Dayton VA.
“The fact that our veterans could have been exposed to infection, let alone over the past 18 years, without any intervention from supervisors at the Dayton VA is outrageous,” Turner said. “Secretary Shinseki must take steps towards righting this wrong.”
The VA has identified at least 535 former patients who may have been exposed to Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV.
The dentist allegedly did not change his latex gloves or sterilize tools when he saw new patients.
“We have promised the men and women of our armed forces that if they risk their lives to defend our country, we will provide them with the benefits they have earned, including high-quality medical care,” Brown said.
“It is shocking that over 500 veterans may have risked their lives, not only on the battlefield, but in the VA health system,” the senator said.
The lawmakers are also calling for the VA to provide them with copies of any internal investigations related to this incident. Those documents would be submitted to the Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association Task Force to inform the community on the nature of the infractions.
Todd Sledge, communications officer for the VA Health Care System of Ohio, said former patients are being offered precautionary testing.
An employee raised concerns about infection control practices at the dental clinic while an internal VA panel was reviewing clinic operations in late July.
The dentist was immediately removed from clinic duties. He retired the second week of February, Sledge said.
Joanne Huist Smith, Staff Writer Updated 8:54 PM Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Dayton VA Dental Clinic Malfeasance PART III

DARRELL HAMPTON
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C
Dear Mr. Secretary:
I have spent the past week calming the fears and anxieties of Veterans here at the Dayton VA as a result of the recent news that they may have contracted a disease while receiving Dental Care at the VA. I do not anticipate this week being any less strenuous. I exhort them to be tested while encouraging them not to presuppose the outcome. More than any question I am asked is this one “Why didn’t they stop this Dentist from hurting us”? I do not share my opinion because I really don’t think they can handle my opinion on this matter.
I have written you many, many letters on the proudly arrogant contemptuous attitude exhibited by Guy Richardson towards America’s Veterans. It seems to pain him to share a room with us, at least that is my personal opinion. While there are certainly hundreds of good, caring and concerned employees on the center, the number of people who share his disdain for Veterans destroy the reputation of the people who are actually great health care providers.. Somehow, this “us against them” mentality desperately needs to be repaired. It is this attitude that permeates some members of the VA that has allowed Dr. Pemberton to practice Dentistry while violating every single protocol of safety without one single complaint being lodged against him by a single employee who worked with him on a daily basis. They watch him spread potential blood born pathogens to Veterans for 18 years and did not stop him. Service Chiefs, who are paid very good money and had the authority to save the lives of patients resigned themselves that there was nothing that could be done to stop him. I can’t help but wonder what their position would have been had one of their children been sitting in his dental chair. In short, some of these people simply don’t care about the American veterans wellbeing, period.
The article in last week’s Dayton Daily Newspaper cited Service Chiefs who claimed “There was nothing I could do and no way to stop this Dentist from infecting America’s Veterans”. This was to hide behind the myth that Federal employees are unmovable. This is untrue! So the implication was he just permitted him to spread potential death sentences on us. The article further cited the many employees who were well aware of this horrible threat to our health and did nothing to protect us from their peer. I repeat “us against them”. This Service Chief could have “detailed” Dr. Pemberton away from patient contact. He could have brought formal charges of misconduct against Dr. Pemberton. There are many things he could have done but he choose to do nothing. Where could he have gotten such permission to turn a blind eye to this abuse, because that is exactly what it has been.
Once a matter is brought to the attention of the Medical Center Director and he refuses to address the matter, only then could a Service Chief feel the impotence described in the newspaper article. I firmly believe that Guy Richardson knew about this a long time ago. As an African American Guy Richardson belongs to a type of Black men who think that ANY African American who has made the sacrifice to achieve a formal education deserves a pass for any infraction. He also believes that any African American who has not sacrificed to obtain a formal education is not worth speaking to. I am an African American without a formal education and I have been on the receiving end of his derisive contempt on more than one occasion. He can barley contain himself in my presence. His blank stares, continually looking at his watch as if I was getting on his last nerves reveals a level of intolerance that is evident in his daily activities. Of all the complaints I have listened to by staff and patients concerning Guy Richardson the most prevalent is the fact that he refuses to even acknowledge their presence when he walks around the Center. I have lost track of the number of people who have asked me “What is wrong with him, I spoke to him and he acted like he didn’t even hear me”. This trait combined with his propensity to hire, promote and surround himself with only African American women with nice figures has been his modus operandi on the Center.
Guy Richardson is completely unmoved by any pain or discomfort described to him concerning the welfare of our Veterans. This man is egotistical arrogance and big-headedness personified. I knew long ago that this would cause him great trouble and I have been proven prescient on this particular matter. Men like him, when caught, resort to the only escape door they perceive remains open: They lie! He is lying about the fact that he had no knowledge that Dr. Pemberton was violating safety protocols. He has held over 1400 meetings with the Service Chief and the Asst. Service Chief of the Dental Department. Claiming that his relationship with his Chief of staff was fractured preventing him from information is another lie. No good lie is successful without a little truth added to it.
Yes, their relationship was fractured but it was not “that” broken.
I suspect that he has also hidden from you the fact that Dr. Pemberton is an 81 year old openly gay man who has a history of flagrantly flirting with patients and staff is widely suspected to be HIV positive himself. I do know for fact that a few years ago Dr. Pemberton was very ill and told people he had cancer. This is a very common cover up for HIV sufferers when their T Cell Viral Load diminishes and they become deathly ill. Dr. Pemberton is also a Veteran who has been hospitalized at the Dayton VA. If I am correct about what is commonly reported it is a matter of record and Guy Richardson already knows it and has allowed Veterans to be exposed to these microorganisms. These additional facts, if corroborated, when combined with the current violations exacerbate this situation to atmospheric levels of increased concern.
I have not and I will not repeat these allegations to any person on this Medical Center. I do not see the profit in raising fear and concern. My goal is to help veterans not incense them and torture them with additional worry and pain.
I have written you over and over about the attitude of some of the people in authority here. Now, what I have feared has become a reality: Their neglect has hurt somebody. For me to believe Guy Richardson’s claim of ignorance of this malfeasance I would first have to accept that Bernie Madoff had no idea he was stealing people‘s money. I hold Guy Richardson 100% responsible for allowing this abuse to continue on his watch and it is my hope that you will do the same Sir.
Sincerely Yours,
Darrell Hampton
February 14, 2010

Friday, February 11, 2011

Dayton VA Dental Clinic Malfeasance PART II

DARRELL HAMPTONFebruary 10, 2010
 
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C

Dear Secretary Shinseki: (updated 2/11/11)
In this morning’s Dayton Daily News Paper a detailed report of the investigation of the Dayton VA Dental Clinic is being reported.
http://www.daytondailynews.com/news/dayton-news/va-dental-service-chief-aware-dentist-failed-to-sterilize-tools-1077574.html CNN is also running this story. It claims that the Medical Center Director, Guy B. Richardson had no knowledge of the plethora of violations committed by this dentist, Dwight M. Pemberton, who at 81 years old was still being allowed to practice on America’s Veterans and paid over $3000 a week to expose Veterans to blood born pathogens.

Dayton VA Dental Clinic Malfeasance

DARRELL HAMPTON
November 2, 2010
 
 
To Whom This May Concern:
Approximately 45-60 days ago the Dayton VA shut down the Dental Clinic in an emergency. It appeared that a dentist named Dr. Dwight Pemberton, 82 years old, had infected several Veterans with blood born pathogens.
Over the past 2 years several dental staff employees had reported, on multiple occasions, to the Chief of Medicine, Stephen Cohen, as well as the Medical Center Director, Guy Richardson, that Dr. Pemberton was practicing in violation of standard sanitary protocols. Neither executive moved to correct this problem. Now, what was swept under the rug has become a huge lump.
They closed the Dental Clinic, started transferring Vets to Cincinnati or Columbus for treatment and begun a search of exactly how many Vets Dr. Pemberton had treated. The number was staggering. It seems he has treated over 2000 (two-thousand) Veterans. They have set aside a section of the Medical Center for triage and will began to send letters to each and every Veteran treated by this 82 year old Dentist and start testing for blood born pathogens. They are testing for HIV, Hep C, Hep B and MYRSA.
They have worked very diligently to keep this out of the MSM.
As a person whose reputation has been to expose VA violations in their treatment of America’s Veterans I am continuing in that effort.
If you have any questions and/or concerns as to the veracity of this story please feel free to contact me.
I have been writing of the apathy and downright disrespect towards the Honorably Discharged Veterans emanating from Guy B. Richardson. My last meeting with him, when I mentioned that Veterans were arriving for appointments hungry and leaving in the same condition, he replied: “ I am not here to feed hungry Veterans”! This was an incredible demonstration of arrogance on his part!
 
Sincerely Yours,
 
Darrell Hampton



Infection control among workers is focus of VA dental clinic investigation
The Dayton VA Medical Center closed its dental clinic for three weeks late this summer as part of an ongoing investigation into whether employees were following infection control practices.
No evidence has been uncovered to date indicating any veterans have been infected, said Dr. George Arana, acting assistant deputy undersecretary for health operations and clinical management for the Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington, D.C.
It wasn’t immediately clear how many of the clinic’s 12 to 14 employees might not have been adhering to infection control standards. The alleged inappropriate practices may have been going on for years, perhaps even decades, Arana said.
The temporary closing resulted in the cancellation of 657 patient appointments. Those patients with more immediate dental needs were referred to VA clinics in Cincinnati, Columbus or Chillicothe, officials said.
An employee raised concerns about infection control practices at the Dayton VA dental clinic while an internal VA panel was reviewing clinic operations in late July. VA officials closed the clinic Aug. 19 and reopened it Sept. 10.
“We wanted to be assured that patients were in a safe environment,” Dayton VA Director Guy Richardson said.
The allegations involved improper use of protective gear such as gloves, as well as the inappropriate use of burs — rotary cutting instruments used in dentistry for excavating decay, shaping cavity forms, reducing tooth structure, and adjusting or removing prostheses or dentures.
The allegations did not involve needles, which comprise the major risk for transmitting bloodborne pathogens, officials said.
Patient volumes have returned to normal levels, VA officials said. Spokesman Todd Sledge said the clinic’s staffing levels have not changed significantly since the incident. The clinic has seven dentists.
The investigation should be complete in one to three months, Arana said.
Sledge said he’s not aware of any disciplinary action so far related to the incident, though discipline could be forthcoming.
VA officials said they announced the investigation in the interest of transparency and accountability.
Patients with concerns may call a toll-free VA number: 1 (877) 424-8214.
VA to test 535 dental patients for infections At least 535 veterans will be offered free screenings to see if they were infected with Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV at the Dayton VA Medical Center’s dental clinic between 1992 and July 2010.
The VA on Tuesday began contacting veterans seen by a dentist who failed to change latex gloves between appointments. The dentist, whose identity was not disclosed, also did not sterilize burs properly— rotary cutting instruments used in dentistry for excavating decay, shaping cavity forms, reducing tooth structure, and adjusting or removing prostheses or dentures. The unidentified dentist is still employed at the VA, but hasn’t seen patients since July 28.
Any veterans found to be infected will receive treatment at no cost, though the risk of blood-borne infection is thought to be “extremely low,” said Dr. George Arana, acting assistant deputy undersecretary for health operations/clinical management for the Department of Veterans Affairs. The Dayton VA will set up a dental communication center, staffed around the clock, as well as a dental special care clinic open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Building 320 (Lakeside Manor) at the Dayton VA, 4100 W. Third St. For an appointment, veterans should call (877) 424-8214.
Dayton VA Director Guy Richardson could not say Tuesday what the cost of the VA’s response to the infection control problems would be. He had no answer for how the infection control issue went unaddressed for 18 years, noting internal reviews did not detect the problem.
The number of veterans at risk for infection could grow, officials said.
Contact this reporter at (937) 225-7457 or bsutherly@DaytonDailyNews.com
VA dental clinic’s temporary closing causes backlogSince he had his 13 remaining teeth pulled Sept. 10, Larry Vernovage of West Alexandria has waited five months to be fitted for dentures at the Dayton VA Medical Center’s dental clinic.
“Overall, I have no complaints with the VA,” said Vernovage, 64, who described the medical care he’s received at the medical center as some of the best he’s had in his life. But he called the delays he’s experienced at the dental clinic “ridiculous.”
“A guy almost has to get shot in the mouth to get in there in the first place,” Vernovage said.
Guy Richardson, the Dayton VA’s director, acknowledged the dental clinic has been working through a backlog of patients since it closed for three weeks during late summer 2010 to address infection control issues.
The VA said Tuesday it will offer testing to more than 500 veterans to ensure they did not contract Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV. Those veterans had been seen between 1992 and July 2008 by a dentist who did not change his Latex gloves or sterilize tools between patients.
There has been subsequent turnover of the dental clinic’s staff, with both a full-time clinician and part-time clinician retiring since late summer, Richardson said.
The dentist who was the focal point of the VA’s recent investigation into infection control practices remains on the VA’s payroll, but has not seen patients since July 28.
The dental clinic saw 3,142 veterans and had 11,400 visits during federal fiscal year 2010 (Oct. 1, 2009 - Sept. 30, 2010).
The Dayton VA will face no financial penalties, but has implemented a “dental infection control dashboard” to heighten infection control surveillance and randomly review its clinicians’ competencies and credentials, Richardson said By
Updated 11:41 PM Wednesday, February 9, 2011
DAYTON — At least one former supervisor at the Dayton VA Medical Center’s dental clinic took little action after learning a dentist often reused dental equipment on patients without sterilizing it first, according to testimony obtained Wednesday by the Dayton Daily News.
The dentist’s performance had been an issue for years. When told the dentist’s actions likely exposed veterans to blood-borne pathogens, a former dental service chief told investigators the dentist “was not trainable. He wouldn’t take direction. And given the circumstances — that I had not really any avenue to get him out of the service — there wasn’t a lot I felt I could do at the time.”
A 42-page Dayton VA investigation report shows several dental clinic employees knew for years a dentist was not following proper hygiene practices.
“I’ve seen him literally walk from his room with this patient’s denture in one hand, go across to another room, open this patient’s mouth with this denture of the opposite patient in his hand,” one dental assistant told investigators. “I’ve seen him use the same instruments, the same handpiece, the same burs all day long on every patient. I’ve seen him go out of the clinic and push the button on the elevators with dirty gloves on. I’ve seen him open lab doors with dirty gloves on; I’ve seen him go in the lunchroom and use the microwave with dirty gloves on.”
The dentist “repudiated” investigators’ claims against him, according to the report. He remains on the VA’s payroll, but has not seen patients since July 28. Administrative action against him is pending.
The report also:
Expressed concern about the dentist’s cognitive status, saying that during his interview, the dentist often became confused, gave conflicting statements, and did not appear to understand fully the gravity of the situation. One person’s testimony suggested the dentist is elderly, though the Dayton VA declined to disclose his age.
Alluded to testimony indicating the dentist spent “a good deal of clinic duty time conducting genealogy studies” on his work computer.
Found dental students were permitted to practice without the required level of supervision, and staff dentists entered themselves as the primary provider of care that was in fact provided by unlicensed students.
Found evaluations of professional staff were “wholly insufficient” and represented a “gross failure of leadership.”
Exonerated Dayton VA Medical Center Director Guy Richardson, saying he had no knowledge of the dentist’s conduct.
The Dayton VA did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report, which was provided to the Dayton Daily News on Wednesday.
An employee raised concerns about infection control practices at the Dayton VA dental clinic while an internal VA panel was reviewing clinic operations in late July. VA officials closed the clinic Aug. 19 and reopened it Sept. 10.
The VA said Tuesday it would test at least 535 veterans to see if they may have contracted Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV as a result of the poor infection control.
It has set up a dental communication center, staffed around the clock, as well as a dental special care clinic open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to 
4:30 p.m. Saturday at Building 320 (Lakeside Manor) at the Dayton VA, 4100 W. Third St. For an appointment, veterans should call (877) 424-8214.
The Dayton VA on Tuesday began contacting at least 535 veterans, offering them free screenings to see if they were infected with Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV between 1992 and July 2010 due to the dentist’s poor infection-control practices. The testing is expected to cost $18,000 to $25,000, VA spokesman Todd Sledge said.

Below please find links to both, CNN reports and the Dayton Daily News concerning the Dayton VA Dental Clinic Abuse towards Honorably Dicharged Veterans.



 





DARRELL HAMPTONFebruary 10, 2010
 
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C

Dear Secretary Shinseki:           (updated 2/11/11)


In this morning’s Dayton Daily News Paper a detailed report of the investigation of the Dayton VA Dental Clinic is being reported.

http://www.daytondailynews.com/news/dayton-news/va-dental-service-chief-aware-dentist-failed-to-sterilize-tools-1077574.html CNN is also running this story. It claims that the Medical Center Director, Guy B. Richardson had no knowledge of the plethora of violations committed by this dentist, Dwight M. Pemberton, who at 81 years old was still being allowed to practice on America’s Veterans and paid over $3000 a week to expose Veterans to blood born pathogens.
http://www.daytondailynews.com/news/dayton-news/va-dental-service-chief-aware-dentist-failed-to-sterilize-tools-1077574.html http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/health/2011/02/10/nr.vets.hiv.exposure.cnn?iref=allsearch
 
VA dental service chief aware dentist failed to sterilize tools
Ben Sutherly, Staff Writer

Saturday, February 5, 2011

GUY B. RICHARDSON MEDICAL CENTER DIRECTOR/DAYTON VA

DARRELL HAMPTON



September 8, 2010
The Honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Washington D C

The Director of the Dayton VA has been derelict in his duty and participated in so much nefarious conduct on so many different levels it’s hard to believe he remains in a position of authority. “Malfeasance” is the closet definitive word I could find to accurately describe his conduct.

While my VA experience, from a physical medical perspective has been superb and I’ve written many letters complimenting the treatment I have received. On the contrary, the MHCL and the Director’s office has done everything within their power to hinder my recovery and the redemption of my life by penalizing my free speech rights and denying me employment opportunities. With these sort of attitudes , is there any wonder why the rate of recidivism is so high for Veterans who need services from the MHCL? The one thing that is mandatory for a Veteran to recover from any mental health failing is sincerity. The Veteran/Patient must believe that his provider has his/her best interests at heart. Without this basic ingredient the Veteran is destined to stay stuck in wrong thinking and remain sick. Once the patient realizes their care-giver couldn’t care less about them all faith is lost, any progress halts and regression actualizes making subsequent recovery even more difficult. This is deliberate Patient Abuse! Over the past five (5) years I have been on two (2) week long “hunger Strikes” in front of the Center. It appears the only way to get the attention of those in Washington to address my concerns I need to began a third time.


Guy B. Richardson, at the least, is guilty of “malfeasance” and should be removed forthwith.

Because Mr. Richardson chooses to obfuscate and presents such a disingenuous persona to all those he encounters he is more disliked by his staff than any Medical Center Director I have seen at this VA. For five (5) years I have encouraged his employees to give him more time and I have aggressively supported his position on the Center. But…. “facts are stubborn things“. His personality lacks the requisite people skills needed for management and this utterly detestable puerile attitude renders him completely unable to lead. He has become a major perturbation here. His own employees routinely go the other way when they see him coming. Mr. Richardson suffers from a very common disease that has infected many executives in today’s society. This is the exact sickness that caused the financial downfall of our country and has blinded those on Wall Street, making them tone deaf to the consequences of their decisions. It‘s called “A hubristic arrogance of power” and he has it bad!. He is no longer reachable by the common man which renders him ineffective to provide services to America’s Honorably Discharged Veterans who are comprised of mostly poor and middle class people, He exhibits a cold detachment from them ( “I’m not here to feed hungry Veterans“) nor does he desire to even know them for anything other than how he can use them to provide him with a promotion to his next pay raise and/or next elevated duty station. Guy B. Richardson is unfit to lead this facility, Sir!
Mr. Richardson’s propensity at the Center has been to regularly promote African American females into positions they are not qualified to attain. He has demonstrated a repellant attitude towards any male seeking advancement and malicious total vitriol towards my existence. He has personalized my issues here and he has taken a vested interest in insuring I am never allowed to progress as a result of any American benefit I might receive from the Dayton VA. Any “Director” who lacks the self control to discipline his behavior so as not to carry contempt and actively participate in harm to a Patient/Veteran should be relieved of his position.
During the month of June, 2006, I was in the hospital finishing treatment for hep-C. I had taken weekly Interferon (chemo therapy)shots in my stomach and forty Ribavirin pills a week for eleven months. I felt and looked 90 years old. Beginning the first of June (the day of my final injection)the staff of the MHCL began to summon me to treatment teams in an effort to discharge me from the hospital. After I volunteered to surrender my disability payments to the Center and begged to stay because of my sickly weakened condition they still refused to allow me to stay! There were four (4) members on the team. Three of the members were emphatic that I was not to be discharged as it was blatantly obvious that I was still very, very weak and ill. This happened every week for three (3) weeks. On the fourth week another treatment team was ordered. This time the two in leadership of the MHCL Bill O’Brien and Florence Coleman attended and both voted that I be discharged. The result was a tied vote 3 to 3. Bill O’Brien, the MHCL Chief then overruled the tie and ordered me evicted from the center within three (3) days. I met with Mr. Richardson and asked that he reverse their decision and he refused to do so. Mr. Richardson, in a stunning display of malfeasance, allowed them to discharge me while I was severally ill. This resulted in my being made homeless while anemic, malnourished, completely emaciated and horribly weak. I was completely bald and obviously sick to any reasonable person with 20/20 plain vision yet he resolutely refused to intervene on my behalf and sent me outside homeless weak, susceptible to violence and vulnerable to disease. I had very low white blood cells.
When I notified him that Veterans were regularly coming to the Center for appointments “hungry” and leaving in the same condition, Mr. Richardson’s response was ostentatious, he said “I am not here to feed hungry Veterans”. A completely execrable pompously arrogant response and an abdication of his authority.
Mr. Richardson was made aware, two (2) years ago that his Veteran Industry staff was in direct violation of Title 38 and VHA policy in their failure to secure employment contracts for Veterans and they were not making any effort to fix this problem. He has failed to correct this department, mainly, I think because it was me who brought the breakdown to his attention. When I told him two (2) years ago that Title 38 stated “All VI counselors were supposed to spend no less than 75% of their day outside of their offices either securing new contracts or checking on Veterans currently working in contracts” his only response was to smile. The Dayton VA currently has 12-15 Vets working in their Compensated Work Program (CWT). By comparison the Bedford MA Veterans Industry Program currently has over 800 Vets currently working in their program. He uses, as an excuse, the current economic downfall as the reason his programs are failing so far below acceptable performance. That does not answer why the program has preformed equally as poor over the entire five (5) years he has been in charge here. I might add the current employment crisis hasn’t seemed to devastate the Bedford MA program. I mean, 12-15 Vets compared to 800 Vets is transparent malfeasance on it’s face. What is wrong with this picture? As I have explained to him, on numerous occasions, the problem with Veterans Industries is that he continues to expect Mental Health Care Counselors to perform a job they are not trained to do, secure contracts. I have recommended that a “sales personality” be used to do this job. Though I have over 30 years of sales experience I fully expect that he will look elsewhere to obtain this talent resulting in an additional intentional slight of my ability to provide service and an added denial of employment to me.
Mr. Richardson is in direct opposition of President Obama’s recent order that the VA Centers hire and train more Veterans as employees on the Center.
Mr. Richardson has colluded with his employees to punish anyone who dares disagree with him or has the gall to go outside of the Dayton VA seeking redress on any issues. He has instituted a sustained attack against me that has been effective for over four (4) years to deny me employment at the center. His efforts have risen to violations of the Constitution (Article 1, Section 9) by singling me out for a denial of government employment or contracts simply as “retribution and retaliation“ for bringing sustained charges against his staff members. This attack could not succeed without his explicit approval.
The Assistant Service Chief of EMS has a horrible reputation for not being able to control his sexual appetite. He has been arrested and convicted for soliciting paid sex acts from undercover Dayton Police Officers. In spite of this history Mr. Richardson allows him to recruit young female welfare recipients to work under him who do so to earn credits towards their food stamps and healthcare. It does not require the IQ of a brain surgeon to realize that a man with this type of track record will persuade an attractive, desperate young woman to “oblige” him in his priority desire. Mr. Richardson acts oblivious to the potential liability this man presents to the Dayton VA. This is a harassment lawsuit waiting to happen.
Mr. Richardson constantly receives the very same complaints, over and over again and adamantly refuses to resolve the same issues. He actually acts as if you are “getting on his nerves” when you bring complaints to him. Yes. He smiles at you and he says all the right things but he refuses to exercise any executive authority to change the environment. For over eight (8) months I wrote Mr. Richardson detailed documented facts about what his staff was doing to me while I was a patient in the “long term care” facility. I was taking Interferon and repairing for liver disease. I was sleeping 18 hours a day and being constantly harassed by his staff during my few waking hours. Sometimes they would actually wake me up to disrupt my rest. Mr. Richardson did nothing. He never even acknowledged my many letters to him. When I could take no more and began to bring “formal charges” placing him in an untenable position where he “had” to act or face possible career loss, only then did he order preliminary investigations which revealed not only was there smoke where I alleged a fire was burning, there was a roaring inferno beneath my charges. I suffered for at least five (5) months, while severally ill, had Mr. Richardson, done his job it would have spared me some of the most traumatic days of my life.
He has known for over five (5) years that the Coordinator of the Substance Abuse Program at the Dayton VA, Richard Riddle also owns a “Beer and Wine” store where he also sells “Crack Pipes” to the very same Veterans he provides treatment for when they are in his program. I, personally, know of one Veteran, Melvin Buford, who died two years ago, of liver disease, that Mr. Riddle sold alcoholic beverages to up until the last days of his life. If Richard Riddle was not in a department that required his Patients to believe in him or have some semblance of faith in his counsel Mr. Richardson’s response would make sense. I believe that Mr. Riddle’s outside activities renders him unfit and ineffective in his position. If the VA refuses to remove him the very least they should do is reassign him to another department where he can do no further harm to patients.

Mr. Richardson has refused to address this problem and told me “Although his behavior is highly immoral Mr. Riddle has not violated any policies or laws by operating this type of business”. Whew!