Hats Off To The Veterans Administration
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Hats Off To The Veterans Administration

The VA has had its share of critics. I am not one of them. In the midst of the Obamacare fiasco, I want to point out that the healthcare for veterans is in good hands. I understand in Minneapolis it was not always this way. I have heard reports that the quality of care was low a few years before I was participating in their heathcare program. My experience with the VA has been professional, timely and competent.

The VA hospital in Minneapolis was a model for other hospitals several years ago, especially in the way they implemented their procedures and handled their large volume of healthcare cases. From the parking lot through all the services, I feel the care throughout the building.

The VA makes repetitive issues a matter of routine. Here are some examples:

  • Makes automated phone calls to remind you of your next appointment.
  • Prescriptions are mailed out, saving you time at the pharmacy.
  • Evaluations sheets are given for the patient to tell them about their doctor visit.
  • Cost-saving measures such as prescribing a 80 mg tablet and giving you a pill splitter to cut into 2 40 mg tablets.
  • My Health e Vet web site allows the veteran to track his own health issues.

These are just a few of the mechanical things that I have noticed that make the Veterans Administration efficient. In addition, I have noticed an overall attitude of respect and professionalism among the doctors and nurses who serve there. My experience includes the Minneapols, MN Hospital, the Topeka, KS Hospital, and the Junction City, KS Clinic. Almost everyone has been highly attentive and efficient in my treatment.

I am not saying that everything is perfect in the VA system, but I feel that there is a need for a tribute. We live in a world loaded with so many critics, that we need to say a kind word for the people who serve us so well. I actually had a doctor apologize to me for being seven minutes late for my appointment.

Until recently, I thought I may be alone in my observations about improved care by the VA. Then this article caught my attention. It shows that major improvements have been made since the 1990's. Veterans have a high proportion of older people, including a high proportion of wounded warriors.

The Institute of Medicine stated in its 2001 report on healthcare providers in America that the quality of care was better for VA patients on all measures of acute care. VA patients were more likely to be given doctor's recommended care than patients in the national sample.


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