Watchdog: Accountability

3 on leave over allegations on Phoenix vet care

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Three officials of the veterans hospital in Phoenix are being placed on leave while officials investigate allegations of corruption and unnecessary deaths there.

Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki (shin-SEHK'-ee) said Thursday that the officials include director Sharon Helman and associate Lance Robinson. A third employee was not identified in a statement Shinseki issued.

The Phoenix Veterans Health Care Center has been under fire in recent weeks over allegations that up to 40 patients may have died because of delays in care and that, to hide delays in treatment, the hospital kept a secret list of patients waiting for appointments.

Shinseki said the move to put officials on leave was requested by the inspector general looking into the allegations.

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