Recent Press Releases

Washington, DC —  Senator John Thune today participated in a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the care, living conditions, and administration of outpatients at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Senator Thune posed several questions to David S. C. Chu, the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, and Lieutenant General Kevin C. Kiley, the Surgeon General of the United States Army.

"For injured soldiers just returning from abroad, the emergency and trauma care they receive at Walter Reed Army Hospital is second-to-none," Thune said. "The breakdown in care, however, appears to have occurred at the outpatient level. Yesterday I toured Building 18, the outpatient facility of Walter Reed Army Hospital. The conditions in that building were simply unacceptable.

"In today's Armed Services hearing, I was able to ask Walter Reed officials a number of questions regarding hospital staffing, tracking patients throughout the stages of rehabilitation and recovery, and outpatient care-areas from which I believe the problem stems.

"From what I can see, the solution is not limited to just Walter Reed. We need to be taking a system-wide look at the way the Department of Defense manages health care from the moment soldiers are injured on the battlefield to the day they are transitioned to veteran status, and ensuring that there is full funding for each soldier throughout the various stages of medical care."