VA psych: I was punished for speaking out

Feb. 15, 2013 at 10:37 AM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- A psychologist with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs said she is being punished for speaking out about delays in treating post-traumatic stress disorder.

Michelle Washington testified before a congressional committee that the hospital where she worked was overwhelmed by the number of troops returning from war with PTSD, CBS reported Thursday.

After the hearing, Washington said she was stripped of her core duties and received her first and only unsatisfactory performance rating.

The VA has denied retaliating against Washington who said she was really worried she might lose her job.

Given what she knows now, Washington said she would probably testify again "because somebody needed to do it."

This week the Department of Veterans Affairs said it has hired more than a thousand new specialists to deal with veterans suffering from PTSD. The move was ordered by President Obama.

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