MILITARY

VA chief vows to streamline agency, focus on veterans

  • Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald, speaks at a news conference at the veterans Affairs Department in Washington, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. McDonald discussed his visits with VA facilities across the country and outline his priorities.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald, speaks at a news conference at the veterans Affairs Department in Washington, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. McDonald discussed his visits with VA facilities across the country and outline his priorities. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)  (The Associated Press)

  • Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald speaks at a news conference at the Veterans Affairs Department in Washington, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. McDonald discussed his visits with VA facilities across the country and outline his priorities.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald speaks at a news conference at the Veterans Affairs Department in Washington, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. McDonald discussed his visits with VA facilities across the country and outline his priorities. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)  (The Associated Press)

  • Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald speaks at a news conference at the Veterans Affairs Department in Washington, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. McDonald discussed his visits with VA facilities across the country and outline his priorities.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald speaks at a news conference at the Veterans Affairs Department in Washington, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. McDonald discussed his visits with VA facilities across the country and outline his priorities. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)  (The Associated Press)

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald says his agency, with its 14 separate password-protected websites, is too balky for veterans to navigate.

A month into the job, McDonald is promising to make it easier for veterans to get services ranging from health care to college scholarships and job training.

The former Procter & Gamble CEO said Tuesday the VA's closed culture makes it hard to root out problems at the agency's far-flung offices and health care facilities.

McDonald took over as head of the agency in July after VA Secretary Eric Shinseki resigned amid an election-year political furor over veterans having to wait months to get appointments at VA hospitals and clinics and what investigators called systemic cover-ups of the delays.