While celebrating a relaxing Memorial Day, I decided to check in with one of our favorite veterans—Robert Rose of Tennessee who has been fighting the Veterans Administration (VA) over their pain treatment of vets—including himself.
Rose famously sued Tennessee Congressman Phil Roe and others in federal court over the pain treatment of veterans that he says has and is causing Irreparable Harm to the plaintiff and the veteran community and their families.
“22 veterans a day are killing themselves, a number that is probably actually higher than that,” he said. “Yet the federal government does nothing.”
Rose, who turns 54 this week, has been struggling physically—“my back, my side and I’m just very tired,” he said. He sounded very weary when I contacted him, but the strength in his voice increased as we discussed his latest efforts at “seeking justice”.
Rose first came to our attention in January 2017—and I would recommend you read this story to see how he wrote Congress and characterized his pain, its impact on him and his family’s life.
Rose has been particularly incensed by the impact the CDC Guideline on Opioid Prescribing has had on his and other veterans care. Quite simply, he said, “government has no place in the doctor’s office.”
He’s waiting to hear on his latest request to sit down with attorneys from the eleven people he’s suing in federal court to discuss these policies, their impact and urge action be taken to restore effective care to veterans and military members.
“I will sit down with any elected official and any federal bureaucrat and urge them to do what they so far have resisted which is to have a real investigation about how these policies are hurting people, robbing them of care and, in some instances, driving men and women to suicide.”
“Other than exposing these policies,” he said, “I’m not sure what else can be done.”
As the call was winding down, I wished Robert a Happy Memorial Day and thanked him for his service to the country.
He quietly responded, “God Bless”.
You too, Robert.