VA says no proof delays in care caused vets to die

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Department of Veterans Affairs says investigators have found no proof that delays in care caused any deaths at a Veterans Affairs hospital in Phoenix.

Revelations that as many as 40 veterans died while awaiting care from the Phoenix VA rocked the agency last spring, exposing a system in which veterans waited months for care while VA employees falsified records to cover up the delays.

The VA's Office of Inspector General has been investigating the delays for months. Deputy VA Secretary Sloan Gibson said a draft of the inspector general's report says investigators could not "conclusively assert" that delays in care caused veterans to die at the Phoenix VA.

The final report has not yet been released. Gibson spoke in an interview with The Associated Press.

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