VA Hospital Director Where 40 Died Received Bonus Last Month

VA claims bonus was result of 'administrative error'

Phoenix VA Health Care Center
The Phoenix VA Health Care Center / AP

The director of the Phoenix VA hospital received an $8,500 pay bonus last month even as allegations of 40 deaths resulting from excessive wait times for care were being investigated, according to the Weekly Standard.

VA Secretary Eric Shinseki is reportedly responsible for signing off on performance ratings and rewards, but the department’s chairman Jeff Miller said the bonus was the result of  "an administrative error."

The Weekly Standard reports:

Sharon Helman, the director of the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care System, "got an $8,500 bonus last month while there was an open [inspector general] investigation into Phoenix," Chairman Miller told CNN's Jake Tapper in an interview Wednesday.

It had been previously reported that Helman received more than $9,000 in bonus pay in 2013 on top of her annual salary of $169,900. The VA office of inspector general began investigating the Phoenix VA for wrongdoing in December 2013, months before Helman received the additional $8,500 bonus.