KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Veterans Receive False Health Scare

USA Today reports: "More than 1,800 Gulf War veterans were sent letters from the Veterans Administration this month informing them that they had Lou Gehrig's disease - a fatal neurological disease. But at least some of the letters - and the diagnoses - were a mistake."

"Jim Bunker, president of the National Gulf War Resource Center, said VA officials told him the letters dated Aug. 12 were the result of a computer coding error that mistakenly labeled the veterans with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. Katie Roberts, a spokeswoman for the VA, said the letters were simply to inform veterans with ALS of disability compensation available to them and were not intended to deliver a medical diagnosis of ALS" (Welch, 8/24). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.