Updated at 3:57 p.m., Friday, March 2, 2007
Akaka visits Walter Reed Hospital to view conditions
News ReleaseWASHINGTON, D.C. Daniel K. Akaka and other U.S. senators today toured Walter Reed Hospital, including Building 18, to see conditions at the facility for themselves, according to a statement from Akaka.
"As Chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs and a member of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, I am concerned not only about the quality of housing there, but the difficulties servicemembers are having in being processed and evaluated by the Department of Defense," said the Hawai'i Democrat.
"The Walter Reed story may well be indicative of the larger problem in our military health care and disability systems," Akaka said. "Our men and women in the Armed Forces have battled foreign enemies, they should not be battling to bureaucratic hassles at the very time they should be recuperating from their wounds. We need to work to fix an antiquated military disability system and bring it into the 21st Century."
Joining Akaka on the tour were Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.), as well as Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), and Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.).