(Adds background, more comments)
WASHINGTON May 20 A top aide to President
Barack Obama will travel to Phoenix on Wednesday to visit the
medical facility at the heart of allegations involving delays in
healthcare for military veterans.
White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters on Tuesday
that Rob Nabors, a White House deputy chief of staff assigned to
assist a review into the allegations, would meet with the
Phoenix facility's acting chief, Steve Young.
Carney also said Nabors was meeting on Tuesday with
representatives from a number of veterans organizations, such as
the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, and would have
similar sessions while in Phoenix.
Obama is scrambling to get on top of the burgeoning
controversy involving the Veterans Administration that has now
engulfed its secretary, Eric Shinseki. Obama has stood firmly
behind Shinseki despite calls for his resignation.
The Veterans Administration has put three senior officials
in Phoenix on administrative leave after doctors there said they
were ordered to hold veterans' names for months on a secret
waiting list until a spot opened up on an official list that met
the agency's two-week waiting time goals.
Allegations have been made about similar cover-up schemes at
VA medical facilities in at least seven other cities. The agency
runs the largest U.S. healthcare group, overseeing some 1,700
hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and other facilities.
Obama is expected to comment on the allegations in coming
(Reporting By Steve Holland and Roberta Rampton; Editing by