Agencies

VA Secretary Pushes Passage of Bipartisan ‘Veterans First’ Bill

VA Secretary Pushes Passage of Bipartisan ‘Veterans First’ Bill

With only months left of the Obama administration, VA Secretary Robert McDonald called on veteran advocacy groups to pressure lawmakers to pass key legislation this year, including appeals reform.

VA Work Inspired Radiologist’s Research, Book About Mitochondrial Issues

VA Work Inspired Radiologist’s Research, Book About Mitochondrial Issues

Mark Hom, MD, says he began seriously thinking about the biology behind fitness during a “midlife crisis.”

VHA Medical Services Comparable or Better Than Outside Care

VHA Medical Services Comparable or Better Than Outside Care

The safety and effectiveness of treatment provided by the VHA is sometimes superior to that offered outside the federal healthcare system.

Alabama Mobility Program Helps Veterans Recover from ‘Toxic’ Bedrest

Alabama Mobility Program Helps Veterans Recover from ‘Toxic’ Bedrest

It’s not a widely-publicized problem, but many elderly patients never recover the mobility they lose during a hospital stay.

TBI Evaluations Conducted by Inappropriate VA Staff

TBI Evaluations Conducted by Inappropriate VA Staff

With thousands of traumatic brain injury (TBI) examinations not conducted by designated specialists, the VA is offering to reprocess disability claims for affected veterans.

Waiting to Treat Low-Risk Prostate Cancer Doesn’t Lessen Quality of Life

By Brenda L. Mooney SEATTLE—With active surveillance (AS) an increasingly important alternative to surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation treatment for men diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer, clinicians have been unsure how that affects patients’ health-related quality of life (HRQoL). New research… Read More

Low Vitamin D Linked to Aggressive PC

CHICAGO—Aggressive prostate cancer appears to be linked to low levels of vitamin D, according to a new study. The report, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, suggests its finding is important, because it can offer guidance to men and… Read More

Prostate Cancer Risk Not Linked to ‘T’ Therapy

SEATTLE—With increased prescribing of testosterone (T) during the past decade, concerns have grown about long-term health risks associated with T treatment, including the risk of prostate cancer. A study presented at the American Urological Association meeting in San Diego this… Read More

Primary Care-Based Treatment Improved PTSD, Depression Without Stigma

Primary Care-Based Treatment Improved PTSD, Depression Without Stigma

By Brenda L. Mooney SANTA MONICA, CA – Can enhanced primary care treatment help alleviate the stigma some military servicemembers fear when told to seek mental healthcare? A new study suggests it can. Military members who visited a primary care… Read More

White House Action Increases Opioid Prescription Monitoring at VA

By Annette M. Boyle WASHINGTON—The White House’s announcement this summer of new steps to address the prescription opioid and heroin epidemic had a mixed message for the VA: While the administration specifically praised the VA’s new opioid prescribing policies for… Read More

VA Explores Pain Management Alternatives to Delay Opioid Use

By Annette M. Boyle WASHINGTON—Since the rollout of the VA’s Opioid Safety Initiative in 2014, the department has aggressively focused on developing non-narcotic alternatives to reduce opioid use for chronic pain. Now, attention is turning to options that delay or… Read More

VA’s Future Debated by Presidential Candidates, Congress

VA’s Future Debated by Presidential Candidates, Congress

In what he said was his “final major address” to the nation’s veterans last month, President Barack Obama defended his administration’s record on veterans’ issues and decried any suggestion that VA should be privatized.

Timing of Flu in HIV Patients Vaccinated Early

SAN DIEGO – Past research has shown that patients with HIV infection vaccinated early in the flu season are generally more likely to contract influenza or influenza-like illness (ILI), compared with those receiving late vaccination. The reason likely is that… Read More

Staph, Influenza Co-Infection Increases Mortality

IOWA CITY, IA – Co-infection with Staphyloccocus aureus and influenza more than quadruples the risk of death compared to those without influenza, according to a new study. The article published recently in the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s… Read More

VA Healthcare Workers Have Relatively Low Flu Vaccine Rates

ANN ARBOR, MI—Multiple national recommendations encourage all healthcare workers to get the influenza vaccination, thereby reducing the chance they will pass the virus on to their patients. Despite a patient population of older and sicker patients more likely to develop… Read More

For Veterans and Armed Forces, Risk Remains Despite Flu Shots

For Veterans and Armed Forces, Risk Remains Despite Flu Shots

While influenza vaccine is the first line of defense against an infectious disease that can dramatically affect troop readiness, it is far from 100% effective.

More Comprehensive Data Shows Lower Average Veteran Suicide Rate

Serious Concerns Remain About 20, Not 22, Suicides A Day By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON—A recent veterans suicide analysis indicates that an average of 20 veterans died every day in 2014—slightly less than a 2010 estimate—but VA is not “declaring that… Read More

Inferior VA End-of-Life Care Reported for Some Noncancer Conditions

Inferior VA End-of-Life Care Reported for Some Noncancer Conditions

Although most patients in the United States die of another condition, cancer is the focus of most end-of-life care studies.

TRICARE Launches Urgent Care Pilot, Simplifies EHR Sharing

TRICARE Launches Urgent Care Pilot, Simplifies EHR Sharing

The Defense Health Agency (DHA) launched two programs this summer to ease access to care and improve communication between military and civilian healthcare providers.

VA Clinical Pharmacists Have Broader Scope, Better-Than-Average Pay

VA Clinical Pharmacists Have Broader Scope, Better-Than-Average Pay

According to job site Glassdoor, clinical pharmacists in the U.S. make about $113,000 on average. At the VA, they do a little better, averaging nearly $115,000, based on salaries reported to the site.

VA Chiropractic Care Shows Dramatic Increase

WEST HAVEN, CT—Use of chiropractic services at the VA rose by more than 800% between 2004 and 2015, at least partly because of the high rate of musculoskeletal injuries in recent conflicts, according to a new study. Research published in… Read More

Military Knee Injuries Could Be Linked to Hip, Thigh Strength

TULSA, OK—Knee overuse injuries are the most common musculoskeletal complaints in military trainees and are common in active-duty warfighters, according to a new study which suggested a possible link between lower hip and thigh strength and knee overuse injuries. While… Read More