Report Summary

Title: Allegations of Nepotism at the Miami VA Healthcare System in Florida
Report Number: 18-01781-200 Download
Issue Date: 7/28/2020
City/State: Miami, FL
VA Office: Veterans Health Administration (VHA)
Report Author: Office of Special Reviews
Report Type: Administrative Investigation
Release Type: Unrestricted

The VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) investigated a non-specific allegation that chief nurses within the Miami VA Health Care System (Miami HCS) violated the federal anti-nepotism statute by arranging to have their spouses hired for positions for which the spouses were not qualified. This allegation could not be substantiated. In addition, a specific allegation of nepotism was made pertaining to the conduct of a particular chief nurse.

The OIG substantiated the allegation that the chief nurse violated the anti-nepotism statute by recommending the chief nurse’s spouse for a position at the Miami HCS. The chief nurse falls under the statutory definition of a public official and was prohibited from advocating for the employment by VA of the chief nurse’s spouse. The chief nurse was involved in two communications relating to the spouse’s possible employment at VA, one of which the OIG considered advocacy contrary to the federal anti-nepotism statute. The spouse withdrew his/her application without providing an explanation and was not hired by VA.

The OIG made one recommendation relating to administrative action against the chief nurse if the Miami HCS Director deems it appropriate. VA concurred with the OIG’s finding and determined administrative action at this time is unwarranted. The OIG considers the recommendation closed.