SARASOTA, Fla. – Florida Governor Rick Scott made a trip to the Suncoast Thursday, saying he has plans to sue the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Governor Scott says that on multiple occasions, the VA would not let state hospital officials inspect federal care facilities in Florida.
The governor made a campaign stop in Sarasota Thursday to promote his efforts to create jobs in the state. "Now we've added 600,000 jobs in 3 years, so 600,000 people 3 years and 3 months ago didn't have a job had a hard time putting food on the table."
The event was held at Marine Concepts on Whitfield Avenue, a local company known for constructing boats.
But his job creation was just one of the messages Scott was pushing. "We started hearing stories a couple months ago about our veterans dying and being injured in our facilities, so the first thing I said is, let’s get our state agency out to inspect our facilities to helped them with accountability, transparency, help them improve the quality of care. So we sent our inspectors out and they were turned away.”
It’s a move Scott says he will respond to with a lawsuit. "I've asked our state agency for health care administration to sue the federal government to establish or right to help our federal government provide better care."
The issue has also struck a chord with Scott's opponent, Charlie Crist. Earlier this month, Crist tweeted " 41.2k vets in FL don't have health care because Scott didn't expand Medicaid. Unconscionable."
And when we asked the governor to respond, this is what he said. "We've done the right thing with Medicaid. My first year in office when Carlos was majority leader, we did historic Medicaid reform, and now we have companies to make sure that if you’re a Medicaid recipient that you have access to good quality health care.”
The 41.2 thousand veterans figure tweeted by Charlie Crist is from an Urban Institute study. Critics of the study say the number is high. As for Scott's VA lawsuit, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has not yet responded.