The Faster Care for Veterans Act of 2016 called for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to conduct a pilot program under which veterans can use an Internet website or mobile application to schedule and confirm appointments at the department’s medical facilities. Chapter 1 evaluates the VA’s patient self-scheduling systems. Chapter 2 focuses on veterans’ access to care and the status of VA’s community care programs and on VA’s scheduling of timely medical appointments.
To help ensure that veterans are provided timely and accessible health care services, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) may purchase care from non-VA providers, known as community care. Chapter 3 describes trends in obligations for and utilization of VA’s community care programs since fiscal year 2014, how VA develops its community care budget estimate and any subsequent changes made to this estimate, and how VA’s actual obligations for community care compared with estimated obligations for fiscal years 2017 and 2018. The Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Veterans Choice Program (Choice Program) allows eligible veterans to obtain health care services from providers not directly employed by VA (community providers). Chapter 4 identifies challenges to the Choice Program that VA needs to address as it implements its new Veterans Community Care Program (VCCP).
The Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA) was established by the Veterans Health Care Expansion Act. As reported in chapter 5, CHAMPVA is primarily a health insurance program where certain eligible dependents and survivors of veterans receive care from private sector health care providers.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Indian Health Service (IHS) established a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to improve the health status of American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) veterans through coordination and resource sharing among VA, IHS, and tribes. Chapter 6 examines VA and IHS oversight of MOU implementation since 2014, the use of reimbursement agreements to pay for AI/AN veterans’ care since 2014, and key issues identified by selected VA, IHS, and tribal health program facilities related to coordinating AI/AN veterans’ care.
Traditionally, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) had predominantly provided gender-specific health care services to male veterans. Congress passed a number of laws to specifically increase women veterans’ access to gender-specific health care services through the VHA as reported in chapter 7.
Chapter 8 reports on a major rule promulgated by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) entitled “Reimbursement for Emergency Treatment.”