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Latest News

Secret VA nursing home ratings hide poor quality care from the public

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VA nursing home ratings

 

The agency has tracked detailed quality statistics on its nursing homes for years but has kept them from public view, depriving veterans of potentially crucial health care information. Nearly half of VA nursing homes nationwide – 60 – received the agency's lowest ranking of one out of five stars as of Dec. 31, 2017, according to documents obtained by USA TODAY and The Boston Globe.

Trump disavows parts of new VA reform law hours after praising it

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Donald Trump 016

 

WASHINGTON — Hours after praising a new veterans reform bill as a historic step forward for the country, President Donald Trump announced he intends to ignore significant sections of the legislation because he sees them as infringing on executive branch authority.

Veterans Owe Thousands for Survivor Benefits. Why Can’t They Opt Out?

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Veterans Owe

 

On an afternoon in late February, Staff Sgt. John Daniel Shannon, who goes by Dan, got in his truck and drove down the dirt road near his house in Westcliffe, Colo., to meet his son’s school bus at the bottom of the hill. It is one of few tasks Dan, who is 54 and retired, can still manage on his own after being wounded in Iraq in 2004. As he waited, he checked his mailbox, where he found a letter addressed to him from the Defense Finance and Accounting Service, an office within the Defense Department. When he opened the letter, his stomach dropped. It said Dan owed the government money for something called the Survivor Benefit Plan and that the department would start deducting the program premiums from his monthly entitlement for combat-related disabilities. The notice also said he owed $23,451 in unpaid premiums, plus interest, that he was expected to pay.

VA’s telehealth care for rural Veterans with PTSD

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VA Telehealth 002

 

VA is conducting a pilot telehealth program that will give rural Veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) remote access to psychotherapy and related services. The project is part of the focus on improving availability of mental health care for Veterans living in rural areas.

VA’s Veterans Crisis Line Improves Service With Third Call Center Opening in Topeka, Kansas

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Today the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that it has opened its third Veterans Crisis Line (VCL) call center in Topeka, Kansas on the campus of the Colmery-O’Neil VA Medical Center.

VA and PsychArmor Institute Offer Online Suicide Prevention Training

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The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), in collaboration with PsychArmor Institute, a national nonprofit that provides online education and support to Americans who work with, live with or care for military service members, Veterans and their families, recently launched an online suicide-prevention training video, titled “SAVE,” which is designed to equip anyone who interacts with Veterans to demonstrate care, support and compassion when talking with a Veteran who could be at risk for suicide.

VA Extends Record of Transparency with First-Ever Posting of Annual Nursing Home Ratings

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Today the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) extended its unprecedented 18-month record of transparency disclosures by making public for the first time its annual nursing home ratings. View the ratings here.

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