Why Congress won’t fix the VA’s oversight system

The Veterans Administration (VA) and other federal agencies are set to announce plans to reform the oversight and accountability of the VA, a senior official in the agency’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) told Bloomberg on Wednesday.

The VA Office of Management and Budget (OMB) plans to unveil a new management structure to help it better meet its responsibilities, including making sure it has a plan for managing information security, the official said.

The plan will be released as the VA faces pressure from lawmakers to fix an oversight system that’s been criticized for allowing whistleblowers to go public and make public accusations of abuse, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The OIG is tasked with examining and enforcing VA policies and regulations, but the new structure would give OMB more leeway to investigate the agency, the person said.OIG is a separate agency within the OIG that investigates federal and state laws, regulations and other matters, the OIE official said, declining to be identified because the matter is private.

In an earlier statement, the agency said the changes are part of a plan to “build a more resilient and accountable system.”

It said the OIO has taken a number of steps, including a formal review of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), which oversees the VA.

The agency will also consider a plan from the National Academy of Engineering to improve the VA information security and privacy policies.