PHOENIX - Sen. John McCain and Sen. Jeff Flake will speak with Phoenix VA officials tomorrow morning as the medical center deals with allegations of as many as 40 patient deaths due to delayed care at the hospital.
The Vietnam and Korean war vets we spoke to at the American Post Legion 41, know a thing or two about combat, but it’s the battle for veteran health care that’s become a cause for concern for them.
"You cannot just walk into a VA hospital to see a doctor. It doesn't happen,” said veteran Richard Lucero.
"If you file for any disability or anything, you're kind of on the hook for at least a year, probably longer,” added veteran Mike Baldwin.
"They ask you ' what are you doing here, you're not supposed to be here for another three months?' I say 'my God, that's terrible.' I should be able to go in and see a doctor." said veteran Rick Lomeli.
They’re among 80,000 vets served by the Phoenix VA hospital, but they say the men and women who fought for our country aren’t getting the help that they need.
"Well that's the biggest thing, you tell them you have a problem, they throw a prescription at it, they give you a pill,” said Baldwin.
It’s a tough pill to swallow for these vets.
“In fairness to the VA, they're swamped. There are a lot more veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan that didn't come back from Vietnam,” said Baldwin.
Above all else, they want better treatment for the veterans that put their lives on the line for the country.
"These fellas and ladies, went to war, or went into combat because this country asked them to do it. Not for any other reason…and they should take care of them when they come back,” said Baldwin.