LVMAC Tidbit — Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center to Conduct Town Hall in Lehigh Valley

May 25, 2017

The Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center is returning on 14 June 2017 to conduct its third Community Town Hall in the area since the establishment of the quarterly requirement a couple of years back.  It is part of an attempt by the VA to regain the trust among the veterans it serves.  Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center services 19 counties, to include one in New York.  The service area requires distributing the quarterly meetings over a wide area or we would have more of these useful events.  For details, see: Read the rest of this entry »


Forward Observer — Resolving the Suicide Issue: The Obvious Brings Its Own Complications

May 2, 2017

Veterans At Risk Of Suicide Negotiate A Thorny Relationship With Guns, NPR Reports

LVMAC Poster Art 2005Two key points are raised in the article which follows that affect the results, and work against what would seem to be common sense:

1) There is a question as to if the VA is really following a due or, at least, a fair process.  We know of a veteran who was not properly informed of the proceedings against him.  In addition, the VA, according to this article, is probably violating his/her Second Amendment rights, while trying to do the right thing.

2) Fear of being branded as mentally incompetent, may cause affected veterans not to access the benefits they’ve earned, including access to health care for conditions related to their military service.  When a veteran is most fragile, he/she may be effectively driven away.  Why is the term “mental incompetence” used in all instances in the first place? Read the rest of this entry »


LVMAC Tidbit — Another “Veterans as Prey” Fraud Scam

May 2, 2017

The Veterans Choice Program has been beset with problems.  While the program is actually improving, a phone scam has now occurred to add to the VA’s and clients’ frustrations with the program.  Someone is after your credit card number.  Why would the VA be asking that?

See below.   One key thing to remember is that while many VA numbers start with 1-800, not all do, and the Veterans Choice Program is one of them — it uses a 1-866 prefix.

Read the rest of this entry »


LVMAC Tidbit — Rep. Dent and Sec. Shulkin discuss VA healthcare; LVMAC was there

April 21, 2017

Click on image for Morning Call article and video.

What was not mentioned is Alexander Alex, the co-chair of our Healthcare in Our Community initiative, pressed for a health delivery system similar to TRICARE, the  Department of Defense healthcare system.  See also yesterday’s blog article on the extension of the Veterans Choice program.

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As of 14 April 2017


LVMAC Tidbit — Wilkes-Barre VA seeks to establish a Veteran and Family Advisory Council

April 20, 2017

Click on image to enlarge.

May be heavily hospital-oriented initially, but it is also a way to feed new thoughts to the staff about customer service and events elsewhere.  A vast portion of their activities are outside that pleasure dome known as Wilkes-Barre VA Hospital.

Yes, it is an old idea with a face lift, but it may now be worth a shot. The VA is changing.

The statement “Ability to see beyond his/her own personal experience,” is key. If you are going to talk about yourself first, you are not looking out for others.

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As of 20 April 2017


Forward Observer — President Trump signs S. 544, The Veterans Choice Program Extension and Improvement Act

April 20, 2017

Click on image for the Military.com article

LVMAC Poster Art 2005Yesterday, the President signed Senate Bill 544 into law.  It extended and amended the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014.  Otherwise, the controversial Veterans Choice (Card) Program would have expired in August, although $1 billion of the original $10 billion remained in the account and the number of veterans enrolled in the VA healthcare system using  private care, under VA direction, had risen from approximately 10 to 33 percent.   Essentially, the bill was a no-brain’er, as no doubt the good senator from Montana, Jon Tester (D), would himself admit.  It was not a remarkable feat on the part of the Congress or the President — or the VA. Read the rest of this entry »


LVMAC Tidbit — Baby Boomer Vet? Get your Hep-C screening

April 17, 2017

Read the rest of this entry »


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