2015 Issues

November 2015

Do multiple maps and reporting lines adversely affect the VA’s ability to meet veterans’ needs?

Please read this article and participate in this month’s online opinion poll: Do multiple maps and reporting lines adversely affect the VA’s ability to meet veterans’ needs? Yes No Not SureCurrent Results

November 2015

VA Researchers Look at Offering Some Post-Op Follow-up Through Telehealth

As difficult as it is for some veterans to get to routine healthcare appointments, doing so after surgery — even with a low-complexity procedure — can be much worse.

November 2015

VA’s CKD Patients Lack Knowledge About Their Condition

CHICAGO — Chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients at the VA have insufficient knowledge about their condition, which is associated with poorer health outcomes, according to a recent study.The report, published in the Clinical Kidney Journal,... View Article

November 2015

How Obesity Affects Kidney Function, Mortality in Veterans

MEMPHIS, TN — A new study investigated the association of body mass index with progressive loss of kidney function and all-cause mortality in U.S. veterans, finding that those who were overweight but not obese had... View Article

November 2015

Dialysis Timing Tends to Be Different for VA Patients

SEATTLE — The estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) tends to be lower at the VA when dialysis is initiated compared with other healthcare systems, according to a new study.The report, published recently in the Clinical... View Article

November 2015

Cancer Stage, Weight Loss Most Affect Lung Cancer Survival

BRONX, NY — Survival in veterans with lung cancer is more related to their percentage weight loss and stage of cancer than the subtype of lung cancer, according to a new study.Background in the article,... View Article

November 2015

Comorbidities Raise Mortality Risk in Lung Cancer Patients

OMAHA, NE — Comorbid conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, or congestive heart failure raise the mortality risk for lung cancer patients compared to those without the conditions, according to a study funded... View Article

November 2015

Effect of Lung Cancer Screening on Smoking Cessation

BOSTON — Are those with high-risk smoking histories more likely to quit after participation in annual lung cancer screening?That’s the question raised by a recent study published online by JAMA Internal Medicine.1The study, led by... View Article

November 2015

‘Yuck Factor’ Notwithstanding, Maggots Highly Effective for Diabetic Foot Wounds at VA

The VA is proving that “everything old is new again” with an unusual medical device — medicinal maggots.

November 2015

Philadelphia VAMC Pharmacy Focuses More on Customers to Increase Satisfaction

When outpatient pharmacy customer satisfaction scores plunged below 40% on a recent survey, pharmacists in Philadelphia responded with several quality-improvement initiatives and were rewarded with significantly improved ratings.

November 2015

Recommendations to Improve Governance at VA

Establish a governance board to develop fundamental policy, define the strategic path, insulate VHA leadership from direct political interaction, and ensure accountability for the achievement of established performance measures. Congress should consider the following alternatives... View Article

November 2015

McDonald: Proposed Board ‘Abrogation’ of Congress’ Role

Sandra BasuWASHINGTON — An independent governance board, as defined in a recent report, would be redundant with the role of the congressional committees overseeing the VA, according to Secretary Robert McDonald.The recently released review was... View Article

November 2015

A Personalized Approach Works Best in Prevention of Diabetes Development

For years, researchers have promoted the wonders of medical treatment customized to a patient’s specific genetic profile, but the reality in the exam room continues to be more “one size fits all.”

November 2015

Maps and Much More Are Changing at VA

Five Regions with 18 VISNs by Late 2017By Annette M. BoyleWASHINGTON — For the VA, form affects function.Secretary Robert McDonald recognized that as soon as he stepped into the agency’s top leadership role. He made... View Article

November 2015

Outgoing DHA Chief Discusses Success, Goals

Lt. Gen. Robb on Agency’s Second AnniversaryBy Sandra BasuWASHINGTON — DoD officials celebrated the second anniversary of the Defense Health Agency last month, marking what the agency says is its achievement of full operating capability... View Article

November 2015

GAO Points to DHA Challenges

By Sandra BasuWASHINGTON — In a recent report, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) said that, while DoD has made progress in addressing concerns it highlighted in prior reviews regarding DHA’s implementation process, some issues will... View Article

November 2015

Electronic Triggers Speed up Follow-up for Cancer Diagnosis, Care at Houston VAMC

By Brenda L. MooneyHOUSTON — Over the last years, the VA has struggled with ways to reduce follow-up delays for patients, such as those being evaluated for cancer.Researchers at the Michael E. DeBakey VAMC and... View Article

November 2015

Early HIV Researcher Continues Lifelong Battle Against Viruses

Raymond Schinazi, PhD, Hon DSc, still remembers how the patients lined the corridors. They were all too thin, too pale and much too weak.

November 2015

There is no higher religion than human service

To work for the common good is the greatest creed. — Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924) Government service can be extremely trying at times. Last month, I touched on the difficulties of surviving the bureaucracy to which we submit ourselves each week in the care of our servicemembers and their families.


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