Kantor's objective in this book is to help Washington, the Veterans Administration (VA) staff, the vets themselves, and the general public understand the shortcomings of VA medicine today beyond what they read in the newspapers, so that all concerned can chip in to help improve the medical care that all the vets, and not just those returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, are receiving. He reveals exactly how everyoneWashington, veterans, advocacy groups, the various members of the VA staff (including the doctors), the nonmedical and medical administration, the clerks and the rest of the ancillary staff, and the vets themselvesare all together responsible for the breakdown of the system, as he argues that all contribute a share to creating that endpoint: a severe state of havoc with the vets' medical care.
Kantor goes on to describe some of the signature illnesses from which vets suffer, and in the process pinpoints exactly how the system specifically manages to mismanage these ailments, making already serious medical problems even worse. In addition, the author envisions a more ideal VA of the future, bringing forth specific improvements that will assure its implementation. The book concludes with a description of the more positive aspects of the system, offering a platform upon which meaningful reforms can be built.
About the Author
Martin Kantor, MD is a Harvard psychiatrist who has been in full private practice in Boston and New York City, and active in residency training programs at several hospitals, including Massachusetts General and Beth Israel in New York. He also served as Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai Medical School and as Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New JerseyNew Jersey Medical School. He is currently a full-time medical author, the author of more than a dozen other books, including Homophobia, Second Edition (Praeger 2009); Uncle Sam's Shame: Inside the Veteran's Administration (Praeger 2008); Lifting the Weight: Understanding Depression in Men: Its Causes and Solutions (Praeger 2007); The Psychopathy of Everyday Life: How Antisocial Personality Disorder Affects All of Us (Praeger, 2006); Understanding Paranoia: A Guide for Professional, Families, and Sufferers (Praeger 2004); Distancing: Avoidant Personality Disorder, Revised and Expanded (Praeger, 2003), Passive-Aggression: A Guide for the Therapist, the Patient, and the Victim (Praeger, 2002), Treating Emotional Disorder in Gay Men (Praeger, 1999), and Homophobia (Praeger, 1998).
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: An Overview of the VA Bureaucracy
Chapter 2: Psychological Reasons for Staff Mistreating Veterans
Chapter 3: Problematic Medical Care
Chapter 4: Problematic Nonmedical Administration
Chapter 5: Problematic Medical Administration
Chapter 6: Problematic Ancillary Staff
Chapter 7: Problematic Veterans Groups
Chapter 8: Problematic Oversight from Washington
Chapter 9: Difficult Patients
Chapter 10: The Potentially Violent VA Patient
Chapter 11: Problems with the Physical Structure
Chapter 12: Money and VA Medicine
Chapter 13: Toward Better Medical Care for Vets
Chapter 14: Self-help: How Vets Can Become Better Medical Consumers
Chapter 15: A Look to the Future/Recommendations
Chapter 16: On the Positive Side