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Law Requires Reconsideration of Mustard Gas Claims by WWII Veterans

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON—President Donald Trump signed a bill directing VA and DoD to reconsider and make new determinations for all previously denied claims for benefits related to exposure to mustard gas or lewisite, a compound used as a chemical… Read More

VA Makes Public List of Adverse Actions Against Employees

With persistent questions of accountability and transparency dogging VA in recent years, the agency became the first federal agency to post public information on disciplinary actions taken against employees.

VA Seeks to Fill Graduate Medical Education Positions in Next Seven Years

VA Seeks to Fill Graduate Medical Education Positions in Next Seven Years

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON—VA officials told lawmakers that they anticipate filling, by 2024, all of the graduate medical education (GME) positions authorized in a 2014 law. “We believe within the 10-year milestone we will be able to fill the 1,500… Read More

VA Antimicrobial Stewardship Helps with UTIs

BUFFALO, NY—Implementation of an antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP) appeared to significantly decrease duration of antibiotic therapy and length of hospitalization for complicated urinary tract infection at the Buffalo, NY, VAMC, without adversely affecting 30-day readmission rates. The study, published in… Read More

Navy Functional Restoration Pain Program Shows Success

Chronic pain is the leading cause of medical discharge from active duty military service. Disability payments related to the condition also are a significant economic cost to the DoD.

Spinal Manipulation Modestly Effective for Low-Back Pain

Spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) is a treatment option for acute low-back pain, but randomized clinical trials (RCTs) and meta-analyses have reported different conclusions about its effectiveness, according to a new study.

Veterans Choice Program Increases Burden on VA Pharmacists

Veterans Choice Program Increases Burden on VA Pharmacists

The Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act in 2014 allows veterans to receive covered care and prescriptions from non-VA providers in a variety of situations.

Alcohol, Drug Problems Dramatically Increase Veterans’ Suicide Risk

Alcohol, Drug Problems Dramatically Increase Veterans’ Suicide Risk

Solving the devastating issue of veteran suicide depends, at least partly, on being able to identify former servicemembers at the highest risk.

VA’s Fails to Follow Own Requirements for New Hire Drug Testing

VA’s Fails to Follow Own Requirements for New Hire Drug Testing

WASHINGTON — VA is “committed to 100% testing of all final selectees” for its safety-sensitive occupations prior to their appointment, lawmakers were told recently.

Opioid Use Generally Moderate in OEF, OIF, OND Veterans

LITTLE ROCK, AR — With continuing concern about opioid use in veterans, especially those serving in Afghanistan (OEF) and Iraq (OIF and OND), a new study provided a detailed analysis of the issue.

VA Might Yet Move to Commercial EHR System

VA Might Yet Move to Commercial EHR System

After years of working to modernize its electronic health record internally, a senior IT official indicated last month that a shift to a commercial EHR is the likely path forward for VA.

Brachytherapy Usage Decreases in Prostate Cancer

While several prior studies have suggested that brachytherapy utilization has significantly decreased as intensity modulated radiation therapy usage has increased, a group of VA researchers sought to investigate brachytherapy utilization in a large, hospital-based registry.

Metformin Improves Colorectal Cancer Survival in Veterans

Metformin has been associated with improved colorectal cancer survival (CRC), but investigations have been limited by small numbers of patients and confounding by diabetic severity, according to a new study.

Don’t Forget Leishmaniasis When Servicemembers Have Mysterious Symptoms

Don’t Forget Leishmaniasis When Servicemembers Have Mysterious Symptoms

Military physicians stumped by a diagnosis might want to consider leishmaniasis in personnel returning from Iraq or Afghanistan, according to a new report.