VA wait times

The director of the Veterans Administration health services in central Alabama says he's eliminated paper waiting lists, added staff and worked to bring stability to an operation that has some of the longest patient waiting lists in the country.

James Talton talked about the Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System after a VA report Monday showed it had an average wait time for new patients of 75 days. Talton says that's too high.

An Alabama congresswoman says she was misled about steps being taken to correct the falsification of records at Veterans Administration health centers in central Alabama.

Republican Rep. Martha Roby announced over the weekend that the director of VA facilities in Montgomery and Tuskegee had told her some employees were terminated. She said she contacted Director James Talton on Tuesday and he told her there had been a misunderstanding about what he meant when he said the employees were "relieved of their duties." They were not terminated.

Alabama Department of Affairs

Veterans Administration statistics show medical facilities in Montgomery and Tuskegee have some of the nation's longest waits for new patients.

The numbers show VA centers in central Alabama have an average wait time for new patients of 75 days. That's seventh-worst nationally.

Delays are shorter elsewhere in Alabama. The average wait in Tuscaloosa is 47 days, and the Birmingham VA has an average wait of 31 days for new patients.