Funding Influx Not Helping VA To Beef Up Staff At Medical Centers
NPR reports that the hiring pace has not gone up and that new hires are not going to facilities with the longest wait times. In other Veterans Affairs news, the budget deficit at a medical center in Vermont raises questions.
Veterans Choice Act Not Helping Staffing Or Wait Time Problems At VA Hospitals
Before they get to work on reforming the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Congress and the White House might want to take a closer look at the last time they tried it – a $16 billion dollar fix called the Veterans Choice and Accountability Act of 2014, designed to get veterans medical care more quickly. NPR and local member stations have been following that money – including the $10 billion dollars for vets to get care outside the VA system. The Choice Act also channeled about $2.5 billion for hiring more doctors, nurses and other medical staff at VA medical centers. (Walsh, Murphy, Bisaha and Lawrence, 1/31)
New Hampshire Public Radio:
White River Junction, Vt. VA Hospital Faced Unusually Large Budget Deficit
The Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in White River Junction, Vt. experienced one of the worst budget deficits among New England VA hospitals last year. The hospital needed an additional $8.5 million to meet expenses at the end of the last fiscal year, roughly four percent of its total budget. The VA regional office in Massachusetts, known as VISN 1, provided that funding. The White River Junction, Vt. VA hospital serves more than 26,000 veterans in Coos, Grafton, Sullivan and Cheshire Counties in New Hampshire as well as the entire state of Vermont. (Biello, 1/30)