Non-Clinical Topics

Bill Funds Program to Help Military Trauma Specialists Maintain Skills

Bill Funds Program to Help Military Trauma Specialists Maintain Skills

WASHINGTON — In an effort to ensure that military emergency medicine and trauma specialists are able to maintain their skills off the battlefield, a proposed program would establish a Joint Trauma Education and Training Directorate.

Final Agent Orange Report: Stronger Link to Bladder Cancer, Hypothyroidism

Final Agent Orange Report: Stronger Link to Bladder Cancer, Hypothyroidism

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) changed the classification of three medical conditions in its last congressionally-ordered review of the evidence of health problems associated with exposure to Agent Orange and other herbicides during the Vietnam War.

VA Scheduling Role for New 'Choice Program' Raises Concerns

VA Scheduling Role for New ‘Choice Program’ Raises Concerns

The Veterans Choice Program (VCP) was created in the aftermath of a scandal involving misrepresented wait lists for healthcare appointments at the VA, so legislators said they were baffled why the agency now wants to interject itself into the appointment process as the program is revised and expanded.

GAO Report Finds Access Problems 'Persistent' at VA

GAO Report Finds Access Problems ‘Persistent’ at VA

Some Veterans Still Wait Months for Appointments By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON—In response to a report finding that some patients still must wait months to see a doctor, VA officials defended their efforts to fix scheduling and access challenges for veterans… Read More

Proposal to Phase Out VA Healthcare Upsets Veteran Groups

Proposal to Phase Out VA Healthcare Upsets Veteran Groups

A controversial proposal to give all current VA-enrolled veterans the option of community care and to transition the rest of veterans to private market healthcare during the next two decades is making veteran service organizations (VSO) and others uneasy.

VA Contemplates Move to ‘State-of-Art’ Health Record System

VA Contemplates Move to ‘State-of-Art’ Health Record System

With the announced rollout of the new electronic health record (EHR) for military medicine, MHS GENESIS, beginning later this year, the VA said it is considering moving to a new, state-of-the-art EHR system in the future that would better meet its needs.

Bleeding Risk Greater for Veterans on Warfarin Than Previously Expected

Bleeding Risk Greater for Veterans on Warfarin Than Previously Expected

Worried that a fall might lead to traumatic intracranial bleeding, many physicians are wary of prescribing warfarin to older adults with atrial fibrillation (AFib).

VA Care Reverses Racial Disparities in Coronary Heart Disease, Mortality

VA Care Reverses Racial Disparities in Coronary Heart Disease, Mortality

In the United States, blacks experience higher mortality than whites, in general.

Advocates Describe Difficulties in Getting Gulf War Illness Diagnosis

Advocates Describe Difficulties in Getting Gulf War Illness Diagnosis

Legislators Agree That Research on Causes Needs to Continue By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — Veterans are experiencing a high number of denials of Gulf War Illness-related claims at least partly because the condition “presents itself in a way that is… Read More

IOM: VA Should Focus on Gulf War Syndrome Treatment, Not Causes

IOM: VA Should Focus on Gulf War Syndrome Treatment, Not Causes

Veterans Groups Warn That Research Could End By Annette M. Boyle WASHINGTON — A major scientific panel has recommended that the VA stop looking for the cause of Gulf War illness and focus instead on monitoring deployed veterans and treating… Read More

Lack of  VA IVF Payment for Urogenital Injured Veterans Called ‘Tragic’

Lack of VA IVF Payment for Urogenital Injured Veterans Called ‘Tragic’

Advocacy Groups Share Wish Lists with Congress By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — Many veterans are unable to have children because of injuries sustained in Iraq and Afghanistan, and advocacy groups are arguing that VA should pay for in-vitro fertilization. The… Read More

DoD Develops Medical Capabilities List to Maintain Readiness

DoD Develops Medical Capabilities List to Maintain Readiness

Military Trauma Clinicians Struggle to Stay Sharp By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — In an effort to maintain medical readiness after the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, DoD officials are developing a list of joint essential medical capabilities that would be required… Read More

Draft Bill Proposes Abolishing VA Compensation Panels

Draft Bill Proposes Abolishing VA Compensation Panels

Leadership Voices Agreement with Change By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — Currently, a panel composed of physicians or dentists recommends starting salaries for those professionals being hired by the VA. A draft bill in the House of Representatives would eliminate the… Read More

Massive VA Point-of-Care Trial Begins to Compare Two Diuretics

Massive VA Point-of-Care Trial Begins to Compare Two Diuretics

Study Using Primary Care Providers Touted As Much More Cost-Effective By Annette M. Boyle MINNEAPOLIS — Pioneering use of “point of care” research in a new study at the VA might finally answer the question of whether hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) or… Read More

Bill Expanding Veteran Access to Immunizations Ignites Controversy

Bill Expanding Veteran Access to Immunizations Ignites Controversy

Pharmacists Take a Lead Role in Increasing Vaccination Rates By Annette M. Boyle WASHINGTON — An effort in the U.S. Senate to ensure that veterans have access to all recommended immunizations was about as routine as legislation gets, simply clarifying… Read More

Caring for Older Women Veterans Presents Unique Challenges

Caring for Older Women Veterans Presents Unique Challenges

When it comes to health issues, older female veterans aren’t always like other women,

New Army Surgeon General Is First African-American to Head MEDCOMM

New Army Surgeon General Is First African-American to Head MEDCOMM

In another first for the Army, an African-American woman became the new surgeon general last month.

Civilian Healthcare Providers Need Training to Appropriately Treat Veterans

Civilian Healthcare Providers Need Training to Appropriately Treat Veterans

Civilian healthcare providers need to acquire more “military/veteran cultural competence” to provide adequate care to veterans, servicemembers and their families.

VA Urged to Assert Ownership Rights to Employee Inventions

New Hepatitis C ‘Cure’ Is One issue By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — Is VA doing enough to assert ownership rights of inventions made by VA employees using federal funds? The question was raised recently by lawmakers, who focused mostly on… Read More

Veteran Advocates: ‘Choice’ Eligibility Is Too Restrictive

Veteran Advocates: ‘Choice’ Eligibility Is Too Restrictive

VA should use “clinically-based access standards” to determine eligibility for community care rather than the 30-day and 40-mile eligibility standards the agency is proposing for the New Veterans Choice Program (VCP).

IoM: No Health Effects for Navy Veterans in Secret Testing

IoM: No Health Effects for Navy Veterans in Secret Testing

Veterans who took part in secret biological and chemical warfare tests on Navy ships during the 1960s showed “no significant increase in adverse health outcomes.

Indian Health Service Counseling Technique Improves Medication Knowledge

Indian Health Service Counseling Technique Improves Medication Knowledge

An extra minute of patient interaction using the Indian Health Service (IHS) technique more than doubles the likelihood that patients will remember and understand what their new prescription treats, how to take the medication and its possible side effects.