The Department of Veterans Affairs terminated D.C. VA medical center director Brian Hawkins as of July 28 after initially just removing him from his position.
Hawkins was fired because he failed to provide “effective leadership” at the facility, according to a release from the VA on Tuesday evening. A report Tuesday from the VA inspector general also found Hawkins had shared sensitive agency-related information on a private email with his spouse.
NBC4 in Washington determined that Hawkins had been moved to a position at VA headquarters, but now the VA has acted to fire him from the agency. The announcement stated Lawrence B. Connell will continue as the acting director.
“This action underscores VA’s commitment to holding all employees accountable if they fail to do their jobs or live up to VA’s values,” the VA said in a statement.
Back in April, the VA reassigned Hawkins following a rare preliminary report which found a massive shortage of supplies and unsanitary areas in the facility. Moreover, the investigation also found that tools were being stored in dirty areas. A total of 18 out of 25 sanitary areas examined were unclean.
But the medical center’s troubles stem back years, with the facility suffering from a cockroach infestation in various food areas in 2015.
While the VA noted that the facility has undergone major changes to improve operations since Hawkins’ departure, NBC4 recently discovered that a veteran’s body had been sitting in the parking lot for nearly two days.
In total, the medical center sees around 98,000 patients a year.
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