Innovations in Providing Care for Veterans

Recent innovations at the Veterans Health Administration are a result of the VHA’s efforts to implement new and creative methods to solve an array of health care challenges.  Technology innovations can help to deliver essential health care outside the confines of a doctor’s office.

See how the VHA is adapting to emerging health care needs via the informative links on this webpage:  http://bit.ly/2dtf6v7

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Well-Being Information For Aging Veterans

VA Medical Centers can help aging veterans make small changes or even big changes that will improve overall well-being.  The Well-Being section on the VA website provides comprehensive information about eight topics that address well-being, including stay active, stay safe, find balance, eat healthy, sleep well, maintain relationships, nurture your spirit and lower stress.  Each topic includes links to community resources.

Read More: http://1.usa.gov/1KA6Wcg

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Privatization of Veterans Affairs Health Care

Two recent polls of veterans about privatization of VA health care show diverse results.  One says veterans like choice, but they don’t like the idea of moving VA hospitals to an outsourced, privatization model.  Another poll found nearly 90 percent of veterans surveyed believe officials need to increase health care choices for VA patients, including expanded access to private care physicians.

Read More about VA Health Care privatization viewpoints:

http://bit.ly/20X8gjH and http://bit.ly/1MA1QAN

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Higher drug co-pays, uniform DoD-VA drug formulary in defense bill

Easier access to urgent care, higher pharmacy co-pays and a coordinated formulary between the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments are among the changes service members and retirees will likely see in health care when the fiscal 2016 defense authorization bill is passed.

Read More: http://bit.ly/1JJtK7h

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Ten Things to Know About the Veterans Choice Program

The Veterans Choice Program is a new, temporary benefit that allows eligible Veterans to receive health care in their communities rather than waiting for a VA appointment or traveling to a VA facility.

Check out this VA webpage to learn more about the program: http://1.usa.gov/1InRR1n

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Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan Exposed to Burn Pits

In 2013, Congress directed the VA to establish an open burn pit registry. Veterans can sign up on the registry and fill out a questionnaire about their health.  More than 40,000 veterans have signed up so far.

Read a recent article about veterans exposed to the burn pits and see the VA’s Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pit Registry webpage:

http://bit.ly/1gmwb9k and http://1.usa.gov/1MkLxW1

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VFW Releases New Veterans Choice Program Survey Result

The latest survey report by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) reveals that veteran participation and awareness of the Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans Choice Program are improving, but that there are still fundamental areas of concern that must be addressed in order to ensure every veteran who is eligible for the new program is provided the opportunity to use it.  “Fortunately, the Veterans Choice Program is improving access to care for thousands of veterans, and the hurdles that remain are not insurmountable,” said the …

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The Toxic Exposure Research Act of 2015

Bipartisan Senators and Representatives recently introduced the Toxic Exposure Research Act of 2015. If enacted, it will establish within the VA a national center for research on the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions of the descendants of veterans exposed to toxic substances during their service. The bill is about exposures to chemical agents by all who served, including those exposed to Agent Orange, to toxic fumes during demolition operations at the Khamisiyah Pit, and those exposed to toxic fires from burn pits across Afghanistan …

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Benefits available for vets who served at Camp Lejeune

From the 1950s through the 1980s, people living or working at the U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, were potentially exposed to drinking water contaminated with industrial solvents, benzene and other chemicals. This chemical exposure may have led to health conditions, including multiple myeloma. Individuals may be eligible for VA health benefits if they served on active duty or resided (family members) at Camp Lejeune for 30 days or more between Aug. 1, 1953, and Dec. 31, 1987. Read more, including how to …

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Lawsuit would force quick decisions on vets’ appeals

A Vietnam veteran is suing the Veterans Affairs Department to speed up the disability compensation appeals process, a move that could potentially affect thousands of cases. A member of his legal team said that courts have intervened to force quick decisions in individual veterans’ cases in the past, but the lawsuit could create the first class action-type case in the history of the appeals court. A Congressman on the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee has offered his support for the vet’s legal effort.

Read More: http://bit.ly/1HJg6T5

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