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Search Tags: Veterans Affairs
About 10 percent of veterans seeking medical care at VA hospitals and clinics have to wait at least 30 days for an appointment -- more than twice the percentage of veterans the government said last week were forced to endure long waits.
The problems at the Veteran Affairs Department continue to unfold. Meanwhile, the largest civilian agency lacks a Senate confirmed leader. We've seen this pattern before: troubled agency, departed leadership. Some come roaring back, some limp along. John Palguta is the vice president for policy at the Partnership for Public Service. He joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to discuss how the VA can shape a more promising future.
The House and Senate have both passed bills to shore up the Veterans Affairs Department. Now they are in conference to reconcile. The final bill would give veterans more opportunities to seek care outside of VA hospitals, while beefing up the VA's own medical staff. The Congressional Budget Office has scored the VA bill and estimates the expense of the additional care would be about $50 billion. Yevgeniy Feyman, fellow at the Manhattan Institute, joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to discuss whether all the money will help.
The Senate acted Wednesday to help thousands of military veterans enduring long wait times for VA medical care, as the FBI revealed it has opened a criminal investigation into a Veterans Affairs Department reeling from allegations of falsified records and inappropriate scheduling practices.
The first solicitation will address near-term fixes for the current application. The second one will look to commercial technology for a wholesale replacement of the scheduling application. VA says it will build off the contest it ran in 2013 where it awarded $3 million to competitors to develop VISTA-friendly scheduling software.
The Veterans Affairs Department will try to address one major aspect of its patient scheduling scandal by looking to industry for help. VA is planning two major acquisitions in the coming months. Federal News Radio's Executive Editor Jason Miller joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to discuss what VA is trying to do. Read Jason's related article.
Leaders of both the House and Senate pledge to move quickly on legislation to help the Veterans Affairs Department treat the more than 100,000 vets who are either waiting months for medical appointments or have been unable to see a doctor. At a House hearing late last night, a top VA official apologized for the delays, calling them indefensible. Martin Matishak, staff writer at The Hill, joined Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to discuss prospects for legislation and VA's future.