Intro

Welcome to our Big News section for all the latest news concerning Military Disability.

We'll do our best to keep you up to date on everything that could affect your disability. Since the majority of our news will cover legal issues that can be dragged out for a long time, if you'd like an update on an issue, let us know, and we'll do what we can.

Please feel free to comment and submit questions. We want to give you the information you need, so help us by letting us know what you want to know.

This page is strictly for the latest and upcoming news. If you are looking for specific information about the disability system or your disability, see our Military Disability Blog: Advice From the Big Guy or our website, www.MilitaryDisabilityMadeEasy.com, for all the answers you'll need.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Joint Commission on Care Survey Results Released

On August 4, 2016, the Joint Commission on Care released to VA leadership the results of the Special Focused Surveys of the VA that it conducted from October 2014 to September 2015. These surveys were part of the Joint Commission on Care’s investigation of the VA Healthcare System. The unannounced surveys were conducted at 139 medical facilities and 47 community outpatient clinics in response to reports of improprieties in scheduling appointments and delays in receiving care as well as other quality of care issues. They were designed to measure progress made by the VA in improving access to care for veterans as well as identifying continuing problems that still exist in these areas.

The surveys covered processes related to timely access to care, patient flow, and coordination of care.  They also looked at procedures that could possibly indicate delays in diagnostics and provision of care as well as infection control. In addition, these surveys covered the care environment as well as the culture of leadership in the facility.

The Commission has issued Requirements For Improvement (RFIs) based on the survey results. 64% of the organizations had at least 1 RFI while 36% had no RFIs or no non-compliance findings, meaning those organizations were in compliance with VA policies and Commission standards. The findings show that there have been improvements throughout the VA in the areas of leadership, access to care, culture of safety, and staff competency and credentialing.

The main recommendations from the Joint Commission include:
  1.  Continue to monitor the timely scheduling of both new and follow-up appointments.
  2. Look at the challenges with the Choice Act and develop and implement a plan to address those issues.
  3. Develop a tracking process for out-of-network referrals.
  4. Encourage greater patient involvement in their care.
These survey results are just a small part of the Joint Commission on Care’s work and recommendations. It is encouraging to note that while problems definitely still exist, progress is being made in addressing and correcting those issues.


Check out our blog on the Commission on Care’s completereport on how to remedy the many issues within the VA health system.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Transition Coming for Project ARCH Veterans

The Project ARCH (Access Received Closer to Home) pilot program has been operating in parts of Maine, Kansas, Arizona, Wyoming and Virginia and is aimed at providing access to community providers for those veterans who live far from a VA facility, very much like the Veterans ChoiceProgram.

As of August 7th, Project ARCH will officially end, but the VA announced last week that veterans who receive care under Project ARCH will continue to receive uninterrupted care close to their home through the Veterans Choice Program.

Veterans who have been participating in Project ARCH will be transitioned to community care under the Veterans Choice Program. The VA is working with ARCH providers to have them continue to provide care to these veterans, thus enabling them to have continuity of care with known providers.


The VA is in the process of contacting veterans to help them with this transition. If you have been receiving care through Project ARCH and have not yet been contacted or if you have questions about your care, please contact the Care Coordinator at your VA medical facility for assistance.