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ND Veterans Affairs News: Federal

By Martin Matishak - 07/19/14 11:14 AM EDT

A program that allows veterans with traumatic brain injuries to receive treatment in assisted living facilities is in danger of closing down.

With only two weeks to go before the August recess, Congress has yet to take action on legislation that would renew the pilot program before it expires on Sept. 30.

By
National Journal
July 16, 2014

Sloan Gibson says the agency can turn the corner in two years, but it will need a lot more money.

For anyone still under the impression that the embattled Veterans Affairs Department will be able to turn itself around quickly, think again.

Instead, acting VA Secretary Sloan Gibson told members of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee on Wednesday that it would take years for the department to right its wrongs.

By Leo Shane III
Military Times Staff writer
Jul. 16, 2014 - 08:08PM

Veterans Affairs Department officials want nearly $18 billion more in funding over the next three years to hire more clinicians, lease more space and cut down on wait times for medical appointments.

The money is also partly designed to serve as a down payment on rebuilding VA’s reputation, proving to the public that with enough resources, the department can once again be a reliable asset for veterans seeking care.

July 15, 2014
by Holly Petraeus, Assistant Director for Servicemember Affairs
 
In case you haven’t heard, Military Consumer Protection Day (MCPD) is on July 16th this year. If you’re not familiar with MCPD, this is a great chance to learn about the organizations and resources that can help you protect and grow your hard-earned military pay or veterans benefits.

Gregg Zoroya, USA TODAY
12:28 a.m. EDT July 14, 2014

The federal department responsible for caring for America's veterans, already mired in scandal over delays in health care, continues struggling with another major responsibility: paying compensation to those wounded or injured or who grew ill from service in uniform.

While the VA managed last year to reduce a huge backlog in veteran claims for money, it was at the expense of appeals to those decision which are rapidly mounting, according to testimony slated for Monday by the VA Office of Inspector General.

Veterans to Have Easier Access to Health Care (to include North Dakota)

As veterans complain of health impacts from toxic fumes, advocates warn that burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan might come back to haunt the administration.

By
July 10, 2014

The Obama administration prides itself on righting the sins of past regimes, including expanding access to health care for Vietnam veterans who suffered from exposure to the herbicide Agent Orange.

WASHINGTON – In response to the Office of Special Counsel’s recent recommendations for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Sloan Gibson today announced that Gerard R. Cox, MD, MHA will serve as Interim Director of the Office of Medical Inspector (OMI).

July 2, 2014

WASHINGTON - Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Sloan Gibson met with the leadership of 26 Military and Veterans Service Organizations (MSOs and VSOs) to reaffirm his commitment to work together to address the unacceptable, systemic problems in accessing VA healthcare.

By Mike Francis | mfrancis@oregonian.com
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The Oregonian on June 30, 2014 at 11:05 AM

At least 10 veterans exposed to Agent Orange while serving aboard aircraft contaminated by the Vietnam-era defoliant have died after being denied care by the Department of Veterans Affairs, two veterans groups charged Sunday.

June 25, 2014 by Chris Porter

I’ve worked at a few VA medical centers, including four years at the Phoenix VA. I’d like to report something missed in the media storm. Before spilling secrets, though, I’ll dispense with the non-secrets. Everyone who has entered a VA hospital knows:

By Patricia Kime
Military Times Staff writer
Jun. 26, 2014 - 05:55PM

For dog lovers, it’s an absolute: The unconditional love of a canine companion heals the soul, reaching into the heart to cross canyons of loneliness and despair.

Military researchers now are trying to learn if there’s real science behind that semimystical link — and if so, whether it can help treat the signature wounds of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

By Leo Shane III
Military Times Staff writer
Jun. 25, 2014 - 10:53 AM

Lawmakers are moving as fast as they can to pass a new Veterans Affairs reform bill. Unfortunately for supporters, that doesn’t guarantee it’ll be finished soon.

Gregg Zoroya
USA TODAY
12:47 p.m. EDT June 18, 2014

Actors have Oscars. Live theater, the Tony Awards. Journalists receive Pulitzers and scientists Nobel Prizes.

Now there is the Lincoln — for veterans.

The idea is to recognize exemplary service by and for veterans. The award is the brain child of an ex-Green Beret and former assistant secretary with the Department of Veterans Affairs, Tommy Sowers, in cooperation with the Friars Club and Friars Foundation.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                

June 18, 2014          

WASHINGTON – Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Sloan D. Gibson today directed all Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Medical Center and Health Care System Directors to conduct monthly in-person reviews of scheduling practices in every clinic within their jurisdiction.  Site inspections will include observing daily scheduling processes and interacting with scheduling staff to ensure all policies are being followed to deliver Veterans the timely care they have earned.

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