South Texas

AARON SCHRANK/TPR

Officials in the South Texas Veterans Affairs health care system say patient wait times have improved, but could be better.  

Eleven percent of South Texas patients are currently waiting more than 30 days for an appointment. The VA says that’s down from 21 percent in November—the second highest rate of any VA in the country.

This week, NPR examines public corruption in South Texas. The FBI has launched a task force to clean up entrenched wrongdoing by public servants in the Rio Grande Valley. In the final part of this series, we examine vote-stealing and election fraud.

This week, NPR examines public corruption in South Texas. The FBI has launched a task force to clean up pervasive misconduct by public servants in the Rio Grande Valley. But as NPR's John Burnett and Marisa Penaloza report, the problems are entrenched.

The Rio Grande Valley of Texas is a world apart, isolated by empty ranch land to the north, the Gulf to the east, and Mexico to the south. A million-and-a-half people live there amid dazzling wealth and stark poverty.

ROBSTOWN, Texas — A former South Texas reserve deputy is accused of trying to smuggle several non-U.S. citizens into the country.

Federal court documents show Robstown police arrested Luis Enrique Guevara after authorities found three Guatemalan citizens inside the vehicle he was driving. Officers had pulled Guevara over for speeding and for having electronic devices on his dashboard that obstructed his view from the windshield.

Planned Parenthood

For years, the Planned Parenthood Association of Hidalgo County have served the women of their region by providing physicals, pap smears, mammograms, screening for cancer, HIV and sexually transmitted infections and treatment for diabetes, but not abortions.    

But CEO Patricio Gonzales says the stigma of being associated with abortions led to their board's decision to change the group's name to Access Esperanza, Inc. and split fully with Planned Parenthood.

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