PatientEngagementHIT

Department of Veterans Affairs VA

VA Unveils Online Appointment Scheduling for Patient Access

November 15, 2017 - VA announced the official launch of its online appointment scheduling system, aiding patients in accessing the primary or specialty care appointment that best suits their schedules. The online appointment scheduling system is only available at participating VA facilities and requires a Premium My HealtheVet patient portal account. Veterans without a Premium portal account can upgrade online...


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CVS Health Funding to Support Veteran Access to Healthcare

by Sara Heath

CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation have awarded $580,000 in grant funding to Easterseals organizations across the country to improve veteran access to healthcare and smoking cessation programs. The awards, granted in honor of Veterans Day,...

VA Sends Congress Draft Proposal for Veterans Choice Program

by Sara Heath

The Department of Veterans Affairs presented its Veterans Coordinated Access & Rewarding Experiences (CARE) Act to the House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committees. The proposed draft is a Veterans Choice Program revamp that gets rid of the...

VA Must Vet Resources Aiding Patient Treatment Decisions

by Sara Heath

The VA’s care quality transparency on Hospital Compare and its own website help inform patient treatment decisions, found a recent report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO). However, the agency must do more to ensure the accuracy...

Streamlined VA Enrollment Can Spur Better Patient Care Access

by Sara Heath

The VA needs more streamlined protocol surrounding patient enrollment into VHA coverage, according to a recent GAO report. Currently, the VA exceeds the 5-day processing timeline for enrollment, which hinders patient access to care. The enrollment...

House Passes Emergency Funds for Veterans Choice, Care Access

by Sara Heath

The House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill that offers emergency funding for the VA to help support veteran care access. The bill is expected to see Senate debate before the two-week August recess. The bill allocates $3.9 billion...

VA Drives Plans for Patient Education, Experience Improvement

by Sara Heath

The VA Health Administration implemented an online tool to drive patient education about post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and mental health treatment options. The PTSD Treatment Decision Aid outlines different evidence-based treatments,...

VA Signs $19M Deal for Patient Appointment Self-Scheduling

by Sara Heath

The VA selected Document Storage Systems as its vendor to enable patient appointment self-scheduling services, fulfilling parts of the Faster Care for Veterans Act of 2016. The $19.6 million contract will help drive better veteran access to healthcare...

VA Deal Drives Patient Education on Mental Health Treatment

by Sara Heath

The VA and Veterans of Foreign Wars of the US (VFA) have partnered with Walgreens to improve patient education about mental healthcare access, suicide prevention, and opioid abuse. The partnership will support overcoming mental and behavioral...

Veterans Choice Program Extends Third-Party Care Options for Vets

by Sara Heath

President Trump has signed into law the Veterans Choice Program Improvement Act, according to multiple sources. The law will extend the Veterans Choice Program, which allows veterans to access third-party care when experiencing extraordinary...

VA Launches Center for Patient-Centered Healthcare Innovation

by Sara Heath

The VA has launched its Center for Compassionate Innovation (CCI) to help produce and deliver patient-centered healthcare innovations and treatment options to veterans. The CCI will explore cutting-edge medical therapies and emerging workflow...

VA Tool Shows Vets Healthcare Access, Care Quality Information

by Sara Heath

The VA Health Administration has launched an online quality of care and healthcare access tool to empower patients with more information to make better treatment choices. The tool allows patients to view and compare various aspects of healthcare...

Inaccurate VA Wait Time Data Creates Healthcare Access Issues

by Sara Heath

A recent report from the VA Office of Inspector General shows that appointment wait times at the VA are longer than the agency is reporting. According to the brief, these inaccuracies are keeping patients from accessing Veterans Choice, a program...

OIG: VA Still Struggles with Third-Party Patient Care Access

by Sara Heath

The Department of Veterans Affairs needs to bolster its third-party patient care access to help reduce its appointment wait times, according to a recent report from the Office of Inspector General. OIG’s report, which it conducted in response...

VA Extends Practice Authority to NPs, Expanding Vet Care Access

by Sara Heath

The Department of Veterans Affairs has officially granted advanced practice nurse practitioners full practice authority, says a VA news release. The move aims to improve veteran healthcare access by increasing the number of authorized clinicians...

Patients Still Struggle to Access Mental Health Care at VA

by Sara Heath

More than a third of veterans struggle to access mental health care within the VA system despite a high prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a recent survey from the Wounded Warrior Project. Although nearly three-quarters...

VA Leader Promises Patient Care Access, Scheduling Improvements

by Sara Heath

Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Robert A. McDonald is defending the agency once again, restating its commitment to improve patient care access  and timely appointment scheduling for veterans. Following President Obama’s...

88% Favor Expanded Use of Nurse Practitioners in VA Facilities

by Sara Heath

Eighty-eight percent of Americans support a new proposed rule from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) allowing nurse practitioners to practice at the top of their licenses in an effort to expand patient access to care. According to a press...

How VA Handles Problems Related to Patient Access to Care

by Sara Heath

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is seemingly always under the microscope regarding a practice issue. Recently, the agency has been under fire for problems in facilitating patient access to healthcare. But what exactly are the care access...

Senate Bill Seeks to Improve Patient Access to Care at IHS, VA

by Sara Heath

A new Senate bill, the Tribal Veterans Health Care Enhancement Act, could help improve patient access to care through a collaboration between the Indian Health Services (IHS) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Often, tribal veterans who...

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