VA’s new plan to fix its health care backlog problem
The Veterans Affairs Department has figured out how to fix a backlog of health care applications that dates back at least four years: Enforce a law requiring veterans to furnish the necessary paperwork, or the applications will be closed.
By law, VA must notify applicants with incomplete applications, and if the veteran receives the notice but does not provide the information, the department closes the request.
In the past, the VA's Health Eligibility Center has not tracked the status or timing of applications, resulting in an applications backlog that includes the applications of 545,000 living veterans and 245,000 deceased veterans.
The VA inspector general in September 2015 found extensive problems with the VA's health applications, including evidence that VA employees lost 10,000 applications and that more than 245,000 veterans on the pending list actually were deceased.
In addition to sending letters to veterans on the pending list, the department plans to provide the names of veterans who have applied to VA medical centers across the country for VA staff to call them.
“They are using the same address information they’ve had for years that they've acknowledged has bad addresses” said Scott Davis, a VA whistleblower.
Excerpted from Military Times: Patricia Kime / March 8, 2016
Editorial comment – What this means is that the VA, which has not been able to get a grasp on its health care enrollee’s applications for years, will now enforce an archaic law that requires them to contact the enrollees, and if they do not respond, the VA will trash their applications. The VA is doing this even though it knows that the contact information for many of these veterans is erroneous.
Yours in service,