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ND Veterans Affairs News: Federal

The Fargo VA Medical Center (2101 Elm Street N., Fargo) will host a New Veteran Patient Orientation on May 24, 2017, from 3 to 5 p.m. 

The orientation is open to all Veterans interested in learning more about the Fargo VA Health Care System. Veterans are also encouraged to bring a guest to the orientation, such as a fellow Veteran or family member. 

 

During the orientation, attendees will receive information regarding health benefits and the myriad of resources and care available within the Fargo VA Health Care System. 

 

Today (My 9, 2017), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced it is adopting American Cancer Society (ACS) breast cancer screening guidelines that give women a choice to begin screening at age 40. The guidelines also recommend starting yearly mammograms by age 45 and then every other year from age 55. The guidelines apply to women at average risk for breast cancer and complement VA’s already-extensive program for breast care for Veterans.

It has come to the attention of the Department of Veterans Affairs that a phone line has been set up by an unknown party to fraudulently "mimic" the Veterans Choice Program (VCP) phone line.  This imposter phone line may be intended to reach veterans who inadvertently dial the VCP number incorrectly. The VA takes this seriously and want to keep Veterans informed of hte steps VA is taking. Also, the VHA Office of Cummunity Care (VHA CC) has reported the "mimic" line to the VA Office of Inspector General for a possible civil or criminal investigation.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently started digitizing older, inactive paper records, which will save taxpayer dollars through reduced, leased office-space that currently houses these records.
“This is just one of the ways in which we are modernizing our capabilities, not only to be more responsive to Veterans and their families, but also to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars,” said VA’s Acting Under Secretary for Benefits Thomas Murphy.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is taking unprecedented steps to increase transparency.  Today, VA launched a new Access and Quality Tool that provides Veterans with an easy-to-use, easy-to-understand way of accessing patient wait time and quality of care data. This tool not only provides Veterans with more information about VA services, it increases accountability and ensures VA is held to a higher standard.

In response to the recently released VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) report that reviewed processes from June 6 through December 15, 2016 of the Veterans Crisis Line (VCL), the Department of Veterans Affairs released the following statement:

The Department of Veterans Affairs is proud to announce that the challenges with the Veterans Crisis Line have been resolved.

Prior to the opening of our new Atlanta call center our call roll over rate often exceeded 30%. Our current call roll over rate is less than 1%, with over 99% of all calls being answered by the VCL.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) regulations to establish presumptions for the service connection of eight diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune, N.C. are effective as of today.

“Establishing these presumptions is a demonstration of our commitment to care for those who have served our Nation and have been exposed to harm as a result of that service,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Dr. David J. Shulkin. “The Camp Lejeune presumptions will make it easier for those Veterans to receive the care and benefits they earned.”

Today, the Social Security Administration announces the launch of a new Health IT initiative with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that enables all Social Security disability case processing sites to receive medical records electronically from all VA facilities. Veterans will receive a faster decision on their Social Security disability claim, speeding them and their dependents through this new process. Both agencies will save time and money with an automatic request through the eHealth Exchange.

Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin while testifying in a House Veterans Affairs Committee hearing on March 7, 2017, announced his intention to expand provisions for urgent mental health care needs to former servicemembers with other-than-honorable (OTH) administrative discharges.  This move marks the first time a VA Secretary has implemented an initiative specifically focused on expanding access to assist former OTH servicemembers who are in mental health distress and may be at risk for suicide or other adverse behaviors.

The Fargo VA Health Care System and Veterans Benefits Administration will host a Veterans Town Hall and Claims Clinic on March 9 in the Stutsman County Law Enforcement Center Conference Room 1, located at 205 6th Street Southeast, Jamestown, N.D.
The Town Hall, open to both Veterans and the general public, will be hosted by the Fargo VA HCS Director, Lavonne Liversage, and the Director of the VBA’s Dakotas Regional Office, Shawn Bohn.

The Fargo VA Medical Center (2101 Elm Street N., Fargo) will host a New Veteran Patient Orientation, March 8, 2017, from 2 to 4 p.m. 

The orientation is open to all Veterans who are enrolled in the Fargo VA Health Care System. Veterans are also encouraged to bring a guest to the orientation, such as a fellow Veteran or family member. 

During the orientation, attendees will receive information regarding health benefits and the myriad of resources and care available within the Fargo VA Health Care System. 

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced today that it is amending its regulation regarding fertility counseling and treatment available to eligible Veterans and spouses.  VA currently provides certain infertility services other than in vitro fertilization (IVF) services to Veterans as part of the medical benefits package.  This interim final rule authorizes IVF for a Veteran with a service-connected disability that results in the inability of the Veteran to procreate without the use of fertility treatment.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 13, 2017

VA’s Rule Establishes a Presumption of Service Connection for Diseases Associated with Exposure to Contaminants in the Water Supply at Camp Lejeune
VA to provide disability benefits for related diseases

WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has published regulations to establish presumptions for the service connection of eight diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

Patient Access Progress Update
Release 61 – January 12, 2017
Summary
In keeping with the commitment to improve transparency in the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) processes and in accordance with Section 206 of the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 (VACAA), VA today released the latest update of facility-level patient access data and is highlighting notable access improvements. In this release, VA is providing one report:

1. Pending Appointments (Snapshot of Data on January 1, 2017)*

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is amending its regulation on copayments for Veterans’ outpatient medications for non-service connected conditions. VA currently charges non-exempt Veterans either $8 or $9 for each 30-day or less supply of outpatient medication, and under current regulations, a calculation based on the medication of the Medical Consumer Price Index (CPI-P) would be used to determine the copayment amount in future years. 

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