Agencies

Heart Disease Added to List of Health Effects After Experiencing Combat

Heart Disease Added to List of Health Effects After Experiencing Combat

SEATTLE – While combat has long been known to increase the risk of musculoskeletal injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

VA Responds to Legislators’ Concerns About Rural Staffing

VA Responds to Legislators’ Concerns About Rural Staffing

WASHINGTON — While VA might have been provided $5 billion in funding to hire more clinical staff and to improve VA’s physical infrastructure, lawmakers expressed concern last month about challenges to recruiting new medical professionals, particularly in rural areas.

Legislation Seeks to Curtail Bonuses for Leaders of Troubled VAMCs

Legislation Seeks to Curtail Bonuses for Leaders of Troubled VAMCs

WASHINGTON – A bill making its way through Congress would allow the VA secretary to order an employee to repay the amount or a portion of any award or bonus if such payment is determined to be inappropriate. Currently, VA is unable to take back bonuses once they have been distributed.

VA Educates Patients about Who Really Needs Testosterone Therapy

VA Educates Patients about Who Really Needs Testosterone Therapy

COLUMBIA, MO – Often spurred by advertising touting the benefits of testosterone supplementation for “low T,” veterans treated by the VA increasingly are requesting the replacement therapy.

VA Study Finds That Statins Reduce Prostate Cancer Recurrence Risk

VA Study Finds That Statins Reduce Prostate Cancer Recurrence Risk

CHAPEL HILL, NC – Physicians commonly recommend statins for veterans with high triglyceride levels.

Legislators Decry Delays in VA/DoD Medical Record Interoperability

Legislators Decry Delays in VA/DoD Medical Record Interoperability

WASHINGTON – After years of assurances that the project is on track, the VA and DoD still struggle to make their emergency medical records interoperable

DoD: Wounded Warrior Programs Still Needed Despite Combat Wind Down

DoD: Wounded Warrior Programs Still Needed Despite Combat Wind Down

WASHINGTON – While military wounded warrior programs are caring for fewer combat-wounded troops than at the height of conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan

How Effective is Chiropractic Care in Dealing with Veterans’ Pain, Disability?

Recent Study Suggests Mixed Results By Brenda L. Mooney CANANDAIGUA, NY – When alternative therapies are discussed as options for pain relief without medications, chiropractic care often is on the list. For many clinicians at the VA, however, a key… Read More

Secretary Proposes ‘Rightsizing’ VA by Closing Underused Facilities

Secretary Proposes ‘Rightsizing’ VA by Closing Underused Facilities

Political Battles Expected WASHINGTON – The VA needs to “right-size” by shifting resources to areas of the country where the veteran population is growing and by disposing of more than 10 million square feet of excess space that is costing… Read More

VA Seeks to Simplify Services Into a Newly Drawn Five-Region Map

VA Seeks to Simplify Services Into a Newly Drawn Five-Region Map

WASHINGTON – Until recently, the VA divided its services into at least nine sometimes overlapping maps of the United States, delineating numerous regional networks involving literally hundreds of programs.

Issue Raised: Should TRICARE Be Replaced by Commercial Insurance?

Issue Raised: Should TRICARE Be Replaced by Commercial Insurance?

WASHINGTON – DoD should replace TRICARE with a selection of commercial insurance plans, similar to the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, a recent report suggested.

COPD, Asthma or Both? Navigating Landmines in Correct Diagnosis, Treatment

COPD, Asthma or Both? Navigating Landmines in Correct Diagnosis, Treatment

By Annette M. Boyle CHICAGO – Your patient presents with wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath. Is it asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or both? The diagnosis and decision about treatment are not so simple, however. In fact, they… Read More

Better Treatments Sought for Bacteria Colonization in COPD Patients

Better Treatments Sought for Bacteria Colonization in COPD Patients

Symptoms Increase, Worsening Quality of Life By Annette M. Boyle BUFFALO, NY – Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) commonly have bacteria in their lungs. This has been considered inconsequential except during exacerbations, but now it seems that those… Read More

Veteran Study Shows Significant Survival Benefit From Bariatric Surgery

Veteran Study Shows Significant Survival Benefit From Bariatric Surgery

DURHAM, NC – While evidence is growing that bariatric surgery can improve survival among the severely obese, past research hasn’t been as useful for some of the patients who would benefit most from weight loss.

Most Outside Mental Health Providers Unqualified to Care for Veterans

Most Outside Mental Health Providers Unqualified to Care for Veterans

New Law Gives Broader Access to Care Beyond VA By Brenda L. Mooney  WASHINGTON – Passed with broad bipartisan congressional source support, the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 (VACAA) was promoted as a quick and elegant solution… Read More

VA Apologizes for ‘Embarrassing’ Delay in Construction of Colorado Facility

VA Apologizes for ‘Embarrassing’ Delay in Construction of Colorado Facility

WASHINGTON – Calling the situation “unacceptable,” VA Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson apologized last month for delays in the construction of a new VAMC in the Denver area and told lawmakers that finishing the facility without further delay is a priority.

Veterans Continue to Wait for Years for Resolution of Claims Appeals

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON – While the spotlight in recent years has been on reducing the disability claims backlog, lawmakers also recently raised another alarm about a appeals process which, they said, leaves some veterans waiting years to get their appeals resolved.… Read More

Pharmacist Role Expanded with Success in Managing Polypharmacy Patients

Pharmacist Role Expanded with Success in Managing Polypharmacy Patients

FALLS CHURCH, VA – The DoD has successfully reversed a trend toward increased use of opioids by engaging pharmacists in oversight and management of polypharmacy patients in Warrior Transition Units.

Navy Medicine: There to Care for Those in Need

Navy Medicine: There to Care for Those in Need

By Vice Adm. Matthew L. Nathan, U.S. Navy surgeon general and chief, U.S. Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery

Army Medicine: Strengthening the Health of our Nation by Improving the Health of our Army

Army Medicine: Strengthening the Health of our Nation by Improving the Health of our Army

By Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho, Commanding General, U.S. Army Medical Command, 43rd Surgeon General of the Army For the first time in our nation’s history, we are decreased the size of our Army before we ended our longest war. Nonetheless, Army… Read More