Thursday, November 23, 2017
Military News

Haley VA takes "hidden" camera down

RECOMMENDED READING


TAMPA — Leaders of the James A. Haley VA Medical Center Thursday removed a camera disguised as a smoke detector from a brain-damaged veteran's hospital room.

The Department of Veterans Affairs hospital defended the use of the covert camera and offered no reason for its unexpected removal.

The decision came a day after Haley officials admitted they were recording the video feed from veteran Joseph Carnegie's room after initially denying that in interviews with the Tampa Bay Times.

"The use of video cameras has become widespread throughout the medical community in recent years," Haley spokeswoman Carolyn Clark said in a written statement. "These devices enable health care providers to monitor patients without having a nurse sit in a room around the clock."

So far, Haley officials have not said why they chose this particular camera to place in the room. Vonnic, which makes it, calls the camera a "C401W Smoke Detector Covert Camera" on its website.

In place of the camera, Haley will assign a staff member to monitor Carnegie, 80, who lives near Atlanta, around the clock.

Carnegie's daughter, Natalie, said she was happy the camera is gone.

But she said her fight will continue to bring accountability to Haley's leaders after a serious breach of patient privacy.

Haley's deputy director, Roy Hawkins Jr., initially confirmed to the Times on July 9 that the camera was installed without telling family members. Carnegie's relatives discovered it when they took a close look at an odd looking smoke alarm.

Hawkins later denied making that statement, insisting the family was told about it upon installation.

VA officials in Washington, D.C., have so far declined to offer any information about whether national agency policy allows the use of hidden camera in patient rooms, as Haley's deputy director has said.

Haley officials have also declined to answer numerous questions about the camera. U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor, vice chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, expressed dismay.

"Our veterans must receive the most effective care possible while at the same time protecting their privacy and personal rights," Bilirakis said.

"We must hold the VA accountable for its actions."

Comments
SOCom asking rifle makers for single weapon to serve many sniper roles

SOCom asking rifle makers for single weapon to serve many sniper roles

When Ryan Cleckner was an Army Ranger sniper in Afghanistan, he had as many as nine rifles he would use in different situations. But whenever a mission would evolve quickly, he would have to choose which ones to lug onto a helicopter. Even narrowing ...
Published: 11/22/17
Howard Altman: SS American Victory will host cruise to mark Pearl Harbor Day

Howard Altman: SS American Victory will host cruise to mark Pearl Harbor Day

Looking for a unique way to commemorate Pearl Harbor Day and celebrate the military’s nautical traditions?Check out the SS American Victory, which will set sail Dec. 2. for a two-hour cruise at 1:30 p.m.Registration will begin at noon to ride the car...
Published: 11/22/17
U.S. Navy plane with 11 aboard crashes into Pacific; 8 rescued

U.S. Navy plane with 11 aboard crashes into Pacific; 8 rescued

TOKYO — Eight people were rescued and three remained missing after a U.S. Navy plane crashed into the western Pacific Ocean on Wednesday, the Navy said. The C-2 "Greyhound" transport aircraft came down about 500 nautical miles (925 kilometers) southe...
Published: 11/22/17
Sex assault reports declining at MacDill despite increase militarywide

Sex assault reports declining at MacDill despite increase militarywide

TAMPA — The number of sexual assaults reported to officials at MacDill Air Force Base has decreased dramatically during the past three years even as reports across the military have increased slightly, new Pentagon statistics show.Officials at MacDil...
Published: 11/20/17
Cyber firm accesses CentCom cloud information, gives command low security score

Cyber firm accesses CentCom cloud information, gives command low security score

Every day, military and civilian personnel stationed at the MacDill Air Force Base headquarters of U.S. Central Command use the Internet to reach out to foreign audiences in an effort to combat Islamic State propaganda.To help measure the success of ...
Published: 11/17/17
VA’s quiet plan to widen private care with TRICARE stirs concern

VA’s quiet plan to widen private care with TRICARE stirs concern

WASHINGTON — As part of its effort to expand private health care, the Department of Veterans Affairs has been developing plans to merge its health system with the Pentagon’s, a cost-saving measure that veterans groups say could threaten the viability...
Published: 11/17/17
Howard Altman: Missing records confound veterans on base exchange website

Howard Altman: Missing records confound veterans on base exchange website

In the more than three decades that I have been toiling at various paragraph factories, few stories have elicited as much response as the one I wrote about the new program to allow all honorably discharged veterans to shop at military base exchanges ...
Published: 11/17/17
She was an artist who answered a Craigslist ad. Next thing she knew she was best friends with a 93-year-old Pearl Harbor survivor

She was an artist who answered a Craigslist ad. Next thing she knew she was best friends with a 93-year-old Pearl Harbor survivor

University of Miami architecture student Emi Kopke still cannot believe her luck. She answered a Craiglist ad asking for an artist to do hand drawings for a special project. The self-taught artist sent in 15 of her hand drawings — including some of b...
Published: 11/11/17
As fewer serve, burden of war falls heavier on families with tradition of service

As fewer serve, burden of war falls heavier on families with tradition of service

When Lauren Price’s youngest son went off to fight in Iraq in 2008, she handed him a going-away present few parents could offer."I gave him my Iraqi cell phone," said Price, 52, a Navy veteran from New Port Richey who served in the same region of Ira...
Published: 11/10/17
Howard Altman: Army settles flap over who will wear the Green Beret

Howard Altman: Army settles flap over who will wear the Green Beret

I have a hard time picturing Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, a no-nonsense guy with plenty on his plate, taking time out of his busy day sorting through color swatches.But thanks to one of two recent victories in the battle for Army tradition, ...
Published: 11/09/17
Updated: 11/10/17