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Sample records for veterans affairs healthcare

  1. Dengue surveillance in Veterans Affairs healthcare facilities, 2007-2010.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia L Schirmer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Although dengue is endemic in Puerto Rico (PR, 2007 and 2010 were recognized as epidemic years. In the continental United States (US, outside of the Texas-Mexico border, there had not been a dengue outbreak since 1946 until dengue re-emerged in Key West, Florida (FL, in 2009-2010. The objective of this study was to use electronic and manual surveillance systems to identify dengue cases in Veterans Affairs (VA healthcare facilities and then to clinically compare dengue cases in Veterans presenting for care in PR and in FL. METHODOLOGY: Outpatient encounters from 1/2007-12/2010 and inpatient admissions (only available from 10/2009-12/2010 with dengue diagnostic codes at all VA facilities were identified using VA's Electronic Surveillance System for Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics (ESSENCE. Additional case sources included VA data from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention BioSense and VA infection preventionists. Case reviews were performed. Categorical data was compared using Mantel-Haenszel or Fisher Exact tests and continuous variables using t-tests. Dengue case residence was mapped. FINDINGS: Two hundred eighty-eight and 21 PR and FL dengue cases respectively were identified. Of 21 FL cases, 12 were exposed in Key West and 9 were imported. During epidemic years, FL cases had significantly increased dengue testing and intensive care admissions, but lower hospitalization rates and headache or eye pain symptoms compared to PR cases. There were no significant differences in clinical symptoms, laboratory abnormalities or outcomes between epidemic and non-epidemic year cases in FL and PR. Confirmed/probable cases were significantly more likely to be hospitalized and have thrombocytopenia or leukopenia compared to suspected cases. CONCLUSIONS: Dengue re-introduction in the continental US warrants increased dengue surveillance and education in VA. Throughout VA, under-testing of suspected cases highlights the need to

  2. Dengue surveillance in Veterans Affairs healthcare facilities, 2007-2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schirmer, Patricia L; Lucero-Obusan, Cynthia A; Benoit, Stephen R; Santiago, Luis M; Stanek, Danielle; Dey, Achintya; Martinez, Mirsonia; Oda, Gina; Holodniy, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Although dengue is endemic in Puerto Rico (PR), 2007 and 2010 were recognized as epidemic years. In the continental United States (US), outside of the Texas-Mexico border, there had not been a dengue outbreak since 1946 until dengue re-emerged in Key West, Florida (FL), in 2009-2010. The objective of this study was to use electronic and manual surveillance systems to identify dengue cases in Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare facilities and then to clinically compare dengue cases in Veterans presenting for care in PR and in FL. Outpatient encounters from 1/2007-12/2010 and inpatient admissions (only available from 10/2009-12/2010) with dengue diagnostic codes at all VA facilities were identified using VA's Electronic Surveillance System for Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics (ESSENCE). Additional case sources included VA data from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention BioSense and VA infection preventionists. Case reviews were performed. Categorical data was compared using Mantel-Haenszel or Fisher Exact tests and continuous variables using t-tests. Dengue case residence was mapped. Two hundred eighty-eight and 21 PR and FL dengue cases respectively were identified. Of 21 FL cases, 12 were exposed in Key West and 9 were imported. During epidemic years, FL cases had significantly increased dengue testing and intensive care admissions, but lower hospitalization rates and headache or eye pain symptoms compared to PR cases. There were no significant differences in clinical symptoms, laboratory abnormalities or outcomes between epidemic and non-epidemic year cases in FL and PR. Confirmed/probable cases were significantly more likely to be hospitalized and have thrombocytopenia or leukopenia compared to suspected cases. Dengue re-introduction in the continental US warrants increased dengue surveillance and education in VA. Throughout VA, under-testing of suspected cases highlights the need to emphasize use of diagnostic testing to better understand the

  3. Dengue Surveillance in Veterans Affairs Healthcare Facilities, 2007–2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schirmer, Patricia L.; Lucero-Obusan, Cynthia A.; Benoit, Stephen R.; Santiago, Luis M.; Stanek, Danielle; Dey, Achintya; Martinez, Mirsonia; Oda, Gina; Holodniy, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Background Although dengue is endemic in Puerto Rico (PR), 2007 and 2010 were recognized as epidemic years. In the continental United States (US), outside of the Texas-Mexico border, there had not been a dengue outbreak since 1946 until dengue re-emerged in Key West, Florida (FL), in 2009–2010. The objective of this study was to use electronic and manual surveillance systems to identify dengue cases in Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare facilities and then to clinically compare dengue cases in Veterans presenting for care in PR and in FL. Methodology Outpatient encounters from 1/2007–12/2010 and inpatient admissions (only available from 10/2009–12/2010) with dengue diagnostic codes at all VA facilities were identified using VA's Electronic Surveillance System for Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics (ESSENCE). Additional case sources included VA data from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention BioSense and VA infection preventionists. Case reviews were performed. Categorical data was compared using Mantel-Haenszel or Fisher Exact tests and continuous variables using t-tests. Dengue case residence was mapped. Findings Two hundred eighty-eight and 21 PR and FL dengue cases respectively were identified. Of 21 FL cases, 12 were exposed in Key West and 9 were imported. During epidemic years, FL cases had significantly increased dengue testing and intensive care admissions, but lower hospitalization rates and headache or eye pain symptoms compared to PR cases. There were no significant differences in clinical symptoms, laboratory abnormalities or outcomes between epidemic and non-epidemic year cases in FL and PR. Confirmed/probable cases were significantly more likely to be hospitalized and have thrombocytopenia or leukopenia compared to suspected cases. Conclusions Dengue re-introduction in the continental US warrants increased dengue surveillance and education in VA. Throughout VA, under-testing of suspected cases highlights the need to emphasize use

  4. Differences in cause of death of Washington State veterans who did and did not use Department of Veterans Affairs healthcare services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maynard, Charles; Boyko, Edward J

    2006-01-01

    Relatively little is known about the cause of death in the veteran population, although more is known about the cause of death in Vietnam veterans or veterans receiving mental health services. This article compares characteristics and causes of death in Washington State veterans who did and did not use Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare services in the 5 years prior to death. This study included 62,080 veterans who died between 1998 and 2002, of whom 21% were users of VA healthcare services. The veterans who used VA healthcare services were younger, more often men, less educated, more often divorced, and more often smokers than the veterans who did not use VA healthcare services. Both female and male veterans who used VA healthcare services were more likely to die from drug- and/or alcohol-related causes. These findings suggest that the VA patient population is socially disadvantaged and more severely affected by substance-use disorders compared with veterans who do not use VA healthcare services.

  5. Development of a Sleep Telementorship Program for Rural Department of Veterans Affairs Primary Care Providers: Sleep Veterans Affairs Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, Elizabeth C; Mattox, Elizabeth A; Beste, Lauren A; Au, David H; Young, Bessie A; Chang, Michael F; Palen, Brian N

    2017-02-01

    Primary care providers (PCPs) frequently encounter sleep complaints, especially in regions with limited specialty care access. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (VA-ECHO) program (based on Project ECHO) has successfully provided rural PCP education in subspecialty areas, including hepatitis C. We describe the feasibility of an ECHO program for sleep medicine. ECHO creates a virtual learning community through video-teleconferencing, combining didactics with individualized clinical case review. We invited multidisciplinary providers to attend up to 10 stand-alone, 1-hour sessions. Invitees completed a needs assessment, which guided curriculum development. After program completion, we examined participant characteristics and self-reported changes in practice and comfort with managing sleep complaints. We surveyed participation barriers among invitees with low/no attendance. Of the 39 program participants, 38% worked in rural healthcare. Participants included nurse practitioners (26%), registered nurses (21%), and physicians (15%). Seventeen (44%) completed the summative program evaluation. Respondents anticipated practice change from the program, especially in patient education about sleep disorders (93% of respondents). Respondents reported improved comfort managing sleep complaints, especially sleep-disordered breathing, insomnia, and sleep in post-traumatic stress disorder (80% of respondents each). A follow-up survey of program invitees who attended zero to two sessions reported scheduling conflicts (62%) and lack of protected time (52%) as major participation barriers. Participants in a pilot sleep medicine VA-ECHO program report practice change and increased comfort managing common sleep complaints. Future work is needed to identify objective measures of return on investment and address participation barriers.

  6. Veterans Affairs Suicide Prevention Synthetic Dataset

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The VA's Veteran Health Administration, in support of the Open Data Initiative, is providing the Veterans Affairs Suicide Prevention Synthetic Dataset (VASPSD). The...

  7. Racial and Ethnic Health Care Disparities Among Women in the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System: A Systematic Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Andrea; Borrero, Sonya; Wessel, Charles; Washington, Donna L; Bean-Mayberry, Bevanne; Corbelli, Jennifer

    2016-01-01

    Women are a rapidly growing segment of patients who seek care in the Veterans Affairs (VA) Healthcare System, yet many questions regarding their health care experiences and outcomes remain unanswered. Racial and ethnic disparities have been well-documented in the general population and among veterans; however, prior disparities research conducted in the VA focused primarily on male veterans. We sought to characterize the findings and gaps in the literature on racial and ethnic disparities among women using the VA. We systematically reviewed the literature on racial and ethnic health care disparities exclusively among women using the VA Healthcare System. We included studies that examined health care use, satisfaction, and/or quality, and stratified data by race or ethnicity. Nine studies of the 2,591 searched met our inclusion criteria. The included studies examined contraception provision/access (n = 3), treatment of low bone mass (n = 1), hormone therapy (n = 1), use of mental health or substance abuse-related services (n = 2), trauma exposure and use of various services (n = 1), and satisfaction with primary care (n = 1). Five of nine studies showed evidence of a significant racial or ethnic difference. In contrast with the wealth of literature examining disparities both among the male veterans and women in non-VA settings, only nine studies examine racial and ethnic disparities specifically among women in the VA Healthcare System. These results demonstrate that there is an unmet need to further assess health care disparities among female VA users. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  8. Fluoroquinolone-Resistant Escherichia coli Infections after Transrectal Biopsy of the Prostate in the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elie Antoun Saade

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Recent reports suggest that infections due to fluoroquinolone-resistant Escherichia coli (E. coli are an increasingly common complication of transrectal biopsy of the prostate (TBP in the United States. A better understanding of the magnitude and scope of these infections is needed to guide prevention efforts. Our objective is to determine whether the incidence of infections due to fluoroquinolone-resistant E. coli after TBP has increased nationwide in the Veterans Affairs Health Care System and to identify risk factors for infection. Methods: We performed a retrospective, observational cohort study and a nested case-control study within the US Deparment of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System. The primary outcomes were the incidence of urinary tract infection (UTI and bacteremia with E. coli and with fluoroquinolone-resistant E. coli strains within 30 days after TBP. Secondary endpoints focused on the correlation between fluoroquinolone-resistance in all urinary E. coli isolates and post-TBP infection and risk factors for infection due to fluoroquinolone-resistant E. coli infection. Results: 245 618 patients undergoing 302 168 TBP procedures from 2000 through 2013 were included in the cohort study, and 59 469 patients undergoing TBP from 2011 through 2013 were included in the nested case-control study. Between 2000 and 2013, there was a 5-fold increase in the incidence of E. coli UTI (0.18%–0.93% and a 4-fold increase in the incidence of E. coli bacteremia (0.04%–0.18% after TBP that was attributable to an increase in the incidence of fluoroquinolone-resistant E. coli UTI (0.03%–0.75% and bacteremia (0.01%–0.14%. The increasing incidence of fluoroquinolone-resistant E. coli infections after TBP occurred in parallel with increasing rates of fluoroquinolone-resistance in all urinary E. coli isolates. By multivariable logistic regression analysis, independent risk factors for fluoroquinolone

  9. Veterans Affairs Central Cancer Registry (VACCR)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Veterans Affairs Central Cancer Registry (VACCR) receives and stores information on cancer diagnosis and treatment constraints compiled and sent in by the local...

  10. Healthcare costs and resource utilization of patients with binge-eating disorder and eating disorder not otherwise specified in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellows, Brandon K; DuVall, Scott L; Kamauu, Aaron W C; Supina, Dylan; Babcock, Thomas; LaFleur, Joanne

    2015-12-01

    The objective of this study was to compare the one-year healthcare costs and utilization of patients with binge-eating disorder (BED) to patients with eating disorder not otherwise specified without BED (EDNOS-only) and to matched patients without an eating disorder (NED). A natural language processing (NLP) algorithm identified adults with BED from clinical notes in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) electronic health record database from 2000 to 2011. Patients with EDNOS-only were identified using ICD-9 code (307.50) and those with NLP-identified BED were excluded. First diagnosis date defined the index date for both groups. Patients with NED were randomly matched 4:1, as available, to patients with BED on age, sex, BMI, depression diagnosis, and index month. Patients with cost data (2005-2011) were included. Total healthcare, inpatient, outpatient, and pharmacy costs were examined. Generalized linear models were used to compare total one-year healthcare costs while adjusting for baseline patient characteristics. There were 257 BED, 743 EDNOS-only, and 823 matched NED patients identified. The mean (SD) total unadjusted one-year costs, in 2011 US dollars, were $33,716 ($38,928) for BED, $37,052 ($40,719) for EDNOS-only, and $19,548 ($35,780) for NED patients. When adjusting for patient characteristics, BED patients had one-year total healthcare costs $5,589 higher than EDNOS-only (p = 0.06) and $18,152 higher than matched NED patients (p < 0.001). This study is the first to use NLP to identify BED patients and quantify their healthcare costs and utilization. Patients with BED had similar one-year total healthcare costs to EDNOS-only patients, but significantly higher costs than patients with NED. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. An academic hospitalist model to improve healthcare worker communication and learner education: results from a quasi-experimental study at a Veterans Affairs medical center.

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    Saint, Sanjay; Fowler, Karen E; Krein, Sarah L; Flanders, Scott A; Bodnar, Timothy W; Young, Eric; Moseley, Richard H

    2013-12-01

    Although hospitalists may improve efficiency and quality of inpatient care, their effect on healthcare-worker communication and education has been less well-studied. To test various approaches to improving healthcare-worker communication and learner education within the context of a newly designed academic hospital medicine program. Before-and-after design with concurrent control group. A Midwestern Veterans Affairs medical center. Multimodal systems redesign of 1 of 4 medical teams (Gold team) that included clinical modifications (change in rounding structure, with inclusion of nurses, a Clinical Care Coordinator, and a pharmacist) and educational interventions (providing explicit expectations of learners and providing a reading list for both learners and attending physicians). Number of admissions, length of stay, readmissions, house officer and medical student ratings of attendings' teaching, medical student internal medicine National Board of Medical Examiners Subject Examination ("shelf" exam) scores, and clinical staff surveys. Length of stay was reduced by about 0.3 days on all teams after the initiative began (P = 0.004), with no significant differences between Gold and non-Gold teams. The majority of physicians (83%) and nurses (68%) felt that including nurses during rounds improved healthcare-worker communication; significantly more nurses were satisfied with communication with the Gold team than with the other teams (71% vs 53%; P = 0.02). Gold attendings generally received higher teaching scores compared with non-Gold attendings, and third-year medical students on the Gold team scored significantly higher on the shelf exam compared with non-Gold team students (84 vs 82; P = 0.006). Academic hospitalists working within a systems redesign intervention were able to improve healthcare-worker communication and enhance learner education without increasing patient length of stay or readmission rates. © 2013 Society of The Authors. Journal of Hospital Medicine

  12. Improving healthcare systems' disclosures of large-scale adverse events: a Department of Veterans Affairs leadership, policymaker, research and stakeholder partnership.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elwy, A Rani; Bokhour, Barbara G; Maguire, Elizabeth M; Wagner, Todd H; Asch, Steven M; Gifford, Allen L; Gallagher, Thomas H; Durfee, Janet M; Martinello, Richard A; Schiffner, Susan; Jesse, Robert L

    2014-12-01

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) mandates disclosure of large-scale adverse events to patients, even if risk of harm is not clearly present. Concerns about past disclosures warranted further examination of the impact of this policy. Through a collaborative partnership between VA leaders, policymakers, researchers and stakeholders, the objective was to empirically identify critical aspects of disclosure processes as a first step towards improving future disclosures. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with participants at nine VA facilities where recent disclosures took place. Ninety-seven stakeholders participated in the interviews: 38 employees, 28 leaders (from facilities, regions and national offices), 27 Veteran patients and family members, and four congressional staff members. Facility and regional leaders were interviewed by telephone, followed by a two-day site visit where employees, patients and family members were interviewed face-to-face. National leaders and congressional staff also completed telephone interviews. Interviews were analyzed using rapid qualitative assessment processes. Themes were mapped to the stages of the Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication model: pre-crisis, initial event, maintenance, resolution and evaluation. Many areas for improvement during disclosure were identified, such as preparing facilities better (pre-crisis), creating rapid communications, modifying disclosure language, addressing perceptions of harm, reducing complexity, and seeking assistance from others (initial event), managing communication with other stakeholders (maintenance), minimizing effects on staff and improving trust (resolution), and addressing facilities' needs (evaluation). Through the partnership, five recommendations to improve disclosures during each stage of communication have been widely disseminated throughout the VA using non-academic strategies. Some improvements have been made; other recommendations will be addressed through

  13. House Committee on Veterans' Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... following events are open to the press: WHO: House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs WHAT: Legislative Hearing on ... From Shielding Dangerous Doctors 13 Oct On Thursday, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Phil Roe ( ...

  14. 38 CFR 17.509 - Authorized disclosure: Non-Department of Veterans Affairs requests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... quality assurance records and documents. (2) Accreditation agencies charged with more narrowly focused...' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS MEDICAL Confidentiality of Healthcare Quality Assurance Review... confidential and privileged quality assurance records and documents from organizations or individuals outside...

  15. Veterans Integrated Services Networks (VISN), Markets, Submarkets, Sectors and Counties by Geographic Location

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides healthcare services to its veterans across the USA including territories and possessions. Healthcare services are...

  16. Critical pathway for the management of acute heart failure at the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System: transforming performance measures into cardiac care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardetto, Nancy J; Greaney, Karen; Arai, Lisa; Brenner, April; Carroll, Karen C; Howerton, Nancy M; Lee, Melinda; Pada, Laureen; Tseng, Marilynne; Maisel, Alan S

    2008-09-01

    Acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF) is a major public health problem and leading cause for hospitalization in people 65 years and older. Admission rates for ADHF, accounted for more than 1 million heart failure (HF) hospitalizations in 2004, and more than 6.5 million inpatient hospital days. Despite significant advances in HF management, including pharmacotherapy and devices; and extensive collaborative efforts of the American College of Cardiology, and American Heart Association to disseminate evidence-based practice guidelines for management of chronic HF in adults; 3 patients continue to present to the emergency departments in ADHF. The hospital treatment of HF frequently does not follow published guidelines, potentially contributing to the high morbidity, mortality, and economic cost of this disorder. This highlights an ongoing need for development of quality improvement programs that focus on delivering reliable, evidence-based care for patients with ADHF. Consequently, the development of clinical pathways has the potential to reduce the current variability in care, enhance guideline adherence, and improve outcomes for patients. The Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System (VASDHCS) formed a multidisciplinary HF performance improvement team. The team set forth on the task of developing standard order sets for patients with ADHF. After analyzing local care processes, reviewing evidence of best care practices, and defining appropriate goals to satisfy the multidimensional needs of HF patient; the team developed a computerized pathway in a user-friendly format that is simple, yet comprehensive; and focuses on early stages of HF evaluation and treatment for patients presenting to the emergency department. Successful strategies to improve care for HF patients need to assist health care providers with rapid recognition and early aggressive treatment, while creating a reliable process that ensures continuity of care. This critical pathway for management of

  17. 75 FR 78807 - Agency Information Collection (Notice to Department of Veterans Affairs of Veteran or Beneficiary...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-16

    ... Incarcerated in Penal Institution) Activity Under OMB Review AGENCY: Veterans Benefits Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA... Veterans Affairs of Veteran or Beneficiary Incarcerated in Penal Institution, VA Form 21-4193. OMB Control...

  18. Modeling veterans healthcare administration disclosure processes :

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Beyeler, Walter E; DeMenno, Mercy B.; Finley, Patrick D.

    2013-09-01

    As with other large healthcare organizations, medical adverse events at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities can expose patients to unforeseen negative risks. VHA leadership recognizes that properly handled disclosure of adverse events can minimize potential harm to patients and negative consequences for the effective functioning of the organization. The work documented here seeks to help improve the disclosure process by situating it within the broader theoretical framework of issues management, and to identify opportunities for process improvement through modeling disclosure and reactions to disclosure. The computational model will allow a variety of disclosure actions to be tested across a range of incident scenarios. Our conceptual model will be refined in collaboration with domain experts, especially by continuing to draw on insights from VA Study of the Communication of Adverse Large-Scale Events (SCALE) project researchers.

  19. Initial Results from the Survey of Organizational Research Climates (SOuRCe in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian C Martinson

    Full Text Available In service to its core mission of improving the health and well-being of veterans, Veterans Affairs (VA leadership is committed to supporting research best practices in the VA. Recognizing that the behavior of researchers is influenced by the organizational climates in which they work, efforts to assess the integrity of research climates and share such information with research leadership in VA may be one way to support research best practices. The Survey of Organizational Research Climate (SOuRCe is the first validated survey instrument specifically designed to assess the organizational climate of research integrity in academic research organizations. The current study reports on an initiative to use the SOuRCe in VA facilities to characterize the organizational research climates and pilot test the effectiveness of using SOuRCe data as a reporting and feedback intervention tool.We administered the SOuRCe using a cross-sectional, online survey, with mailed follow-up to non-responders, of research-engaged employees in the research services of a random selection of 42 VA facilities (e.g., Hospitals/Stations believed to employ 20 or more research staff. We attained a 51% participation rate, yielding more than 5,200 usable surveys.We found a general consistency in organizational research climates across a variety of sub-groups in this random sample of research services in the VA. We also observed similar SOuRCe scale score means, relative rankings of these scales and their internal reliability, in this VA-based sample as we have previously documented in more traditional academic research settings. Results also showed more substantial variability in research climate scores within than between facilities in the VA research service as reflected in meaningful subgroup differences. These findings suggest that the SOuRCe is suitable as an instrument for assessing the research integrity climates in VA and that the tool has similar patterns of results that

  20. Initial Results from the Survey of Organizational Research Climates (SOuRCe) in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinson, Brian C; Nelson, David; Hagel-Campbell, Emily; Mohr, David; Charns, Martin P; Bangerter, Ann; Thrush, Carol R; Ghilardi, Joseph R; Bloomfield, Hanna; Owen, Richard; Wells, James A

    2016-01-01

    In service to its core mission of improving the health and well-being of veterans, Veterans Affairs (VA) leadership is committed to supporting research best practices in the VA. Recognizing that the behavior of researchers is influenced by the organizational climates in which they work, efforts to assess the integrity of research climates and share such information with research leadership in VA may be one way to support research best practices. The Survey of Organizational Research Climate (SOuRCe) is the first validated survey instrument specifically designed to assess the organizational climate of research integrity in academic research organizations. The current study reports on an initiative to use the SOuRCe in VA facilities to characterize the organizational research climates and pilot test the effectiveness of using SOuRCe data as a reporting and feedback intervention tool. We administered the SOuRCe using a cross-sectional, online survey, with mailed follow-up to non-responders, of research-engaged employees in the research services of a random selection of 42 VA facilities (e.g., Hospitals/Stations) believed to employ 20 or more research staff. We attained a 51% participation rate, yielding more than 5,200 usable surveys. We found a general consistency in organizational research climates across a variety of sub-groups in this random sample of research services in the VA. We also observed similar SOuRCe scale score means, relative rankings of these scales and their internal reliability, in this VA-based sample as we have previously documented in more traditional academic research settings. Results also showed more substantial variability in research climate scores within than between facilities in the VA research service as reflected in meaningful subgroup differences. These findings suggest that the SOuRCe is suitable as an instrument for assessing the research integrity climates in VA and that the tool has similar patterns of results that have been

  1. Initial Results from the Survey of Organizational Research Climates (SOuRCe) in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinson, Brian C.; Nelson, David; Hagel-Campbell, Emily; Mohr, David; Charns, Martin P.; Bangerter, Ann; Thrush, Carol R.; Ghilardi, Joseph R.; Bloomfield, Hanna; Owen, Richard; Wells, James A.

    2016-01-01

    Background In service to its core mission of improving the health and well-being of veterans, Veterans Affairs (VA) leadership is committed to supporting research best practices in the VA. Recognizing that the behavior of researchers is influenced by the organizational climates in which they work, efforts to assess the integrity of research climates and share such information with research leadership in VA may be one way to support research best practices. The Survey of Organizational Research Climate (SOuRCe) is the first validated survey instrument specifically designed to assess the organizational climate of research integrity in academic research organizations. The current study reports on an initiative to use the SOuRCe in VA facilities to characterize the organizational research climates and pilot test the effectiveness of using SOuRCe data as a reporting and feedback intervention tool. Methods We administered the SOuRCe using a cross-sectional, online survey, with mailed follow-up to non-responders, of research-engaged employees in the research services of a random selection of 42 VA facilities (e.g., Hospitals/Stations) believed to employ 20 or more research staff. We attained a 51% participation rate, yielding more than 5,200 usable surveys. Results We found a general consistency in organizational research climates across a variety of sub-groups in this random sample of research services in the VA. We also observed similar SOuRCe scale score means, relative rankings of these scales and their internal reliability, in this VA-based sample as we have previously documented in more traditional academic research settings. Results also showed more substantial variability in research climate scores within than between facilities in the VA research service as reflected in meaningful subgroup differences. These findings suggest that the SOuRCe is suitable as an instrument for assessing the research integrity climates in VA and that the tool has similar patterns of

  2. Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA) is a health care benefit program designed for the dependents of certain Veterans....

  3. Trends in Susceptibility Rates and Extended-Spectrum β-Lactamase Production of Klebsiella pneumoniae in Bloodstream Infections Across the United States Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentry, Chris A; Williams, Riley J

    2015-12-01

    Klebsiella pneumoniae is an important pathogen, increasingly notorious for its ability to become resistant to antimicrobial agents. This study sought to characterize trends in antimicrobial susceptibility rates for K. pneumoniae causing bacteremias across the United States (U.S.) Veterans Healthcare Administration (VHA) from 2007 through 2013 utilizing a national clinical database. K. pneumoniae grew in 9,235 blood cultures from 8,414 patients. Nationally, ampicillin-sulbactam, ceftazidime, cefepime, ertapenem, fluoroquinolones, and amikacin demonstrated statistically significant susceptibility rate increases against K. pneumoniae in the 2010-2013 period versus the 2007-2009 period. No antimicrobial agent had a statistically significant nationwide susceptibility rate decrease. Of the 126 antibiotic-organism pairs tested among 9 U.S. regions, 18 demonstrated statistically significant susceptibility rate increases while 6 demonstrated statistically significant susceptibility rate decreases. The East North Central (eight agents), Mid-Atlantic (five agents), and South Atlantic (four agents) regions demonstrated statistically significant susceptibility rate increases for multiple antimicrobial agents. Of the 70 antibiotic-organism pairs tested among 5 different medical center complexity levels, 11 antibiotics demonstrated statistically significant susceptibility rate increases and 1 demonstrated a statistically significant rate decrease. Extended-spectrum β-lactamase production did not significantly change over the study period across an available nationwide representation of 31 facilities (10.6% in 2007-2009 vs. 9.21% in 2010-2013, p=0.17). The South Atlantic and Mid-Atlantic regions had the highest prevalence of extended-spectrum ß-lactamase production in the two periods, respectively. The recent trend of generally increasing susceptibility rates for K. pneumoniae bloodstream isolates in this nationwide U.S. VHA study contrasts from other U.S. health system reports

  4. 78 FR 70088 - Advisory Committee on Veterans Business Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-22

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION Advisory Committee on Veterans Business Affairs AGENCY: U.S. Small Business Administration. ACTION... Business Affairs. The meeting will be open to the public. DATES: December 5, 2013 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m...

  5. 78 FR 4983 - Proposed Information Collection; Women Veterans Healthcare Barriers Survey Activity: Comment Request

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-23

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection; Women Veterans Healthcare Barriers Survey Activity: Comment... response to the notice to conduct an independent comprehensive study of the barriers to the provision of comprehensive health care for women Veterans. DATES: Written comments and recommendations on the proposed...

  6. Epidemiology of Ocular Surface Squamous Neoplasia in a Veterans Affairs Population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClellan, Andrew J; McClellan, Allison L; Pezon, Candido F; Karp, Carol L; Feuer, William; Galor, Anat

    2013-10-01

    To evaluate the epidemiology of ocular surface squamous neoplasia (OSSN) and its associated risk factors in a South Florida Veterans Affairs Hospital population. Retrospective case-control study. Twenty-eight confirmed cases of OSSN from 24,179 veterans who received care at the Miami Veterans Affairs Healthcare System and affiliated satellite eye clinics between March 1, 2007, and March 1, 2012. Data extracted from the veterans administration database that comprised demographic information and medical diagnosis information [based on International Classification of Disease (ICD-9) codes]. The main outcome measures were the period prevalence of OSSN and identification of factors associated with the presence of disease. The period prevalence of OSSN in our population was 0.1%. The risk factors studied included UV-related dermatologic diseases (melanoma, squamous and basal cell cancer, and actinic keratosis), UV-related ocular conditions (pterygium), HIV seropositivity, human papilloma virus-related diseases, and tobacco use. The presence of skin malignancy (squamous cell carcinoma and/or basal cell carcinoma) and pterygium was found to be significantly associated with the presence of OSSN [odds ratio, 4.40; 95% confidence interval, 2.03-9.55; P ocular conditions related to sun exposure was the most important risk factor for the occurrence of OSSN in a South Florida Veterans Affairs Healthcare System population consistent with previous epidemiological reports worldwide.

  7. Perceived Stigma, Discrimination, and Disclosure of Sexual Orientation Among a Sample of Lesbian Veterans Receiving Care in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattocks, Kristin M; Sullivan, J Cherry; Bertrand, Christina; Kinney, Rebecca L; Sherman, Michelle D; Gustason, Carolyn

    2015-06-01

    Many lesbian women experience stigma and discrimination from their healthcare providers as a result of their sexual orientation. Additionally, others avoid disclosure of their sexual orientation to their providers for fear of mistreatment. With the increasing number of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) veterans seeking care from the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), it is important to understand lesbian veterans' experiences with stigma, discrimination, and disclosure of sexual orientation. This article examines lesbian veterans' experiences with perceived stigma and discrimination in VHA healthcare, their perspectives on disclosure of sexual orientation to VHA providers, and their recommendations for improvements in VHA healthcare to create a welcoming environment for lesbian veterans. This is a mixed methods study of twenty lesbian veterans at four VHA facilities. The women veterans participated in a one-hour interview and then completed an anonymous survey. Ten percent of lesbian veterans had experienced mistreatment from VHA staff or providers, but nearly 50% feared that their Veterans Affairs (VA) providers would mistreat them if they knew about their sexual orientation. A majority of lesbian veterans (70%) believed that VHA providers should never ask about sexual orientation or should only ask if the veteran wanted to discuss it. A majority (80%) believed the VHA had taken steps to create a welcoming environment for LBGT veterans. Though many lesbian veterans have fears of stigma and discrimination in the context of VHA care, few have experienced this. Most lesbian veterans believed the VHA was trying to create a welcoming environment for its LGBT veterans. Future research should focus on expanding this study to include a larger and more diverse sample of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender veterans receiving care at VA facilities across the country.

  8. 32 CFR Appendix D to Part 45 - State Directors of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false State Directors of Veterans Affairs D Appendix D..., App. D Appendix D to Part 45—State Directors of Veterans Affairs Alabama Director, Department of... 06067. Indiana Director, Department of Veterans Affairs, 707 State Office Building, 100 N. Senate Avenue...

  9. 48 CFR 852.203-71 - Display of Department of Veterans Affairs hotline poster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... Veterans Affairs hotline poster. 852.203-71 Section 852.203-71 Federal Acquisition Regulations System... Provisions and Clauses 852.203-71 Display of Department of Veterans Affairs hotline poster. As prescribed in 803.7001, insert the following clause: Display of Department of Veterans Affairs Hotline Poster (DEC...

  10. Use of Veterans Affairs and Medicaid Services for Dually Enrolled Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Jean; Vanneman, Megan E; Dally, Sharon K; Trivedi, Amal N; Phibbs, Ciaran S

    2017-06-13

    To examine how dual coverage for nonelderly, low-income veterans by Veterans Affairs (VA) and Medicaid affects their demand for care. Veterans Affairs utilization data and Medicaid Analytic Extract Files. A retrospective, longitudinal study of VA users prior to and following enrollment in Medicaid 2006-2010. Veterans Affairs reliance, or proportion of care provided by VA, was estimated with beta-binomial models, adjusting for patient and state Medicaid program factors. In a cohort of 19,890 nonelderly veterans, VA utilization levels were similar before and after enrolling in Medicaid. VA outpatient reliance was 0.65, and VA inpatient reliance was 0.53 after Medicaid enrollment. Factors significantly associated with greater VA reliance included sociodemographic factors, having a service-connected disability, comorbidity, and higher state Medicaid reimbursement. Factors significantly associated with less VA reliance included months enrolled in Medicaid, managed care enrollment, Medicaid eligibility type, longer drive time to VA care, greater Medicaid eligibility generosity, and better Medicaid quality. Veterans Affairs utilization following new Medicaid enrollment remained relatively unchanged, and the VA continued to provide the large majority of care for dually enrolled veterans. There was variation among patients as Medicaid eligibility and other program factors influenced their use of Medicaid services. © Health Research and Educational Trust.

  11. 38 CFR 3.201 - Exchange of evidence; Social Security and Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ...; Social Security and Department of Veterans Affairs. 3.201 Section 3.201 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans... Compensation Evidence Requirements § 3.201 Exchange of evidence; Social Security and Department of Veterans... Social Security Administration or to have the Department of Veterans Affairs obtain such evidence from...

  12. Veterans' use of Department of Veterans Affairs care and perceptions of outsourcing inpatient care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wakefield, Bonnie J; Tripp-Reimer, Toni; Rosenbaum, Marcy E; Rosenthal, Gary E

    2007-06-01

    The objective of the study was to examine veterans' perceptions of problems and benefits of outsourcing inpatient care from Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals to private sector hospitals. Primary data were collected from a cross-section of 42 veterans who were VA users and nonusers using focus groups. Focus group discussion examined reasons patients use VA care, differences between VA and civilian care, positive and negative impacts of outsourcing, and special needs of veterans. Analyses revealed five domains related both to use of VA services and perceptions of outsourcing: costs, access, quality of care, contract (i.e., a covenant between veterans and the U.S. government), veteran milieu, and special needs. Participants identified a variety of potential positive and negative impacts. In general, veterans perceived more advantages than disadvantages to outsourcing VA care but still expressed significant concerns related to outsourcing. These issues should be considered in the development of future policy toward outsourcing VA care to the private sector.

  13. Assessment of Service Members Knowledge and Trust of the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-06-12

    OIF Operation Iraqi Freedom VA Department of Veterans Affairs VA OIG Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General VBA Veterans Benefits...reorganization into the three administrations: Veterans Health Administration (VHA), Veterans Benefits Administration ( VBA ) and National Cemetery...features. VBA also implemented a similar program in coordination with DoD called eBenefits which allows Veterans, Service Members and their families to

  14. Veterans Affairs Contracting: Improved Oversight Needed for Certain Contractual Arrangements

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-07-01

    Contracting Letter 1 Background 3 The Extent to Which VA Used IAAs Is Unknown Due to Incomplete Information 10 Management of the Award and Oversight...of IAAs Varied, and in Some Cases Did Not Comply with Policy 13 VA Obligated Over $244 Million to FFRDCs with Significant Increases for Two VA...Documentation among Selected IAA Orders 14 Table 2: Veterans Affairs Obligations to Federally Funded Research and Development Centers, Fiscal

  15. 38 CFR 3.108 - State Department as agent of Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Administrative § 3.108 State Department as agent of Department of Veterans Affairs. Diplomatic and consular officers of the Department of State are authorized to act as agents of the Department of Veterans Affairs... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false State Department as agent...

  16. 38 CFR 3.1611 - Official Department of Veterans Affairs representation at funeral.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... representation at funeral. When requested by the person entitled to the custody of the body of a deceased beneficiary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, official representation at the funeral will be granted... Veterans Affairs representation at funeral. 3.1611 Section 3.1611 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief...

  17. An Interprofessional Education Project to Address Veterans' Healthcare Needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Jane; Brommelsiek, Margaret; Amelung, Sarah Knopf

    2017-01-01

    Background/Objective: The number of veterans and their families seeking healthcare and support within civilian communities is increasing worldwide. There is a need for healthcare providers to provide sensitive, comprehensive care for veterans with both physical and behavioral health conditions. Many civilian providers are unfamiliar with veterans'…

  18. Migration by Veterans Who Received Homeless Services From the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metraux, Stephen; Treglia, Dan; O'Toole, Thomas P

    2016-10-01

    We examined migration patterns among 113,400 homeless veterans, focusing on the prevalence and the basic geographic patterns of this migration. Data were for all veterans who initiated use of Veterans Affairs homeless services in 2011 or 2012; and we followed them using Veterans Affairs administrative records for up to 2 years following this initial contact. Results showed that 15.3% of the veterans migrated across regions while homeless. Those who were homeless for longer periods were more likely to migrate, and migration, were it to occur, was most likely earlier on in veterans' homelessness episodes. There were no clear geographic correlates that explained the dynamics of this migration as, overall, in-migration tended to roughly balance out-migration in a region. These findings suggest that concerns about the extent of migration and its impact on localities are exaggerated, but also sets forth an agenda for more in-depth study of these data to gain a deeper and more expansive understanding of this phenomenon. Reprint & Copyright © 2016 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  19. The Health and Social Isolation of American Veterans Denied Veterans Affairs Disability Compensation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fried, Dennis Adrian; Passannante, Marian; Helmer, Drew; Holland, Bart K; Halperin, William E

    2017-02-01

    Authors comparatively analyzed health and social isolation between U.S. military veterans denied Veterans Affairs (VA) disability compensation and veterans awarded VA disability compensation. The 2001 National Survey of Veterans was used to create a sample of 4,522 veterans denied or awarded VA disability compensation. Using the Andersen health services utilization model as a conceptual framework, multivariate logistic regression was applied to assess relationships between VA disability compensation award status, three separate domains of health, and correlates of social isolation. Results indicate that denied applicants were more likely than those awarded to have poor overall health (odds ratio [OR] = 1.45, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.23, 1.70), and limitations in activities of daily living (OR = 1.12, 95% CI: 1.03, 1.21). Denied applicants' physical functioning (40.3) and mental functioning (41.2) composite summary scores were not clinically different from those of awarded applicants (39.0 and 40.1, respectively), indicating that both were comparably impaired. Veterans denied VA disability compensation had poor health and functional impairments. They also experienced poverty and isolation, suggesting that they may be in need of additional supportive services. Connecting veterans to community resources could be a vital service to provide to all veterans applying for disability compensation. © 2016 National Association of Social Workers.

  20. 38 CFR 14.514 - Suits by or against United States or Department of Veterans Affairs officials; indemnification of...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... United States or Department of Veterans Affairs officials; indemnification of Department of Veterans... States or Department of Veterans Affairs officials. When a suit involving any activities of the Department of Veterans Affairs is filed against the United States or the Secretary or a suit is filed against...

  1. The Post-9/11 GI Bill: Insights from Veterans Using Department of Veterans Affairs Educational Benefits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Geri L.; Boland, Elizabeth A.; Dudgeon, Brian; Johnson, Kurt

    2013-01-01

    Because the Post-9/11 GI Bill was implemented in August of 2009, increasing numbers of veterans returning from the Global War on Terror (GWT) have drawn on Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) educational benefits. Based on the findings of a mixed-methods study, quantitative and qualitative survey responses from veterans enrolled at a major…

  2. Mediation of smoking-associated postoperative mortality by perioperative complications in veterans undergoing elective surgery: data from Veterans Affairs Surgical Quality Improvement Program (VASQIP)?a cohort study

    OpenAIRE

    Singh, Jasvinder A; Hawn, Mary; Campagna, Elizabeth J; Henderson, William G; Richman, Joshua; Houston, Thomas K

    2013-01-01

    Objective To assess the mediation of smoking-associated postoperative mortality by postoperative complications. Design Observational cohort study. Setting Using data from the Veterans Affairs (VA) Surgical Quality Improvement Programme, a quality assurance programme for major surgical procedures in the VA healthcare system, we assessed the association of current smoking at the time of the surgery with 6-month and 1-year mortality. Primary and secondary outcome measures Using mediation analyse...

  3. The Veterans Affairs's Corporate Data Warehouse: Uses and Implications for Nursing Research and Practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Lauren E; Shea, Kimberly; Gephart, Sheila

    2015-01-01

    The Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans Healthcare Administration (VHA) is supported by one of the largest integrated health care information systems in the United States. The VHA's Corporate Data Warehouse (CDW) was developed in 2006 to accommodate the massive amounts of data being generated from more than 20 years of use and to streamline the process of knowledge discovery to application. This article describes the developments in research associated with the VHA's transition into the world of Big Data analytics through CDW utilization. The majority of studies utilizing the CDW also use at least one other data source. The most commonly occurring topics are pharmacy/medications, systems issues, and weight management/obesity. Despite the potential benefit of data mining techniques to improve patient care and services, the CDW and alternative analytical approaches are underutilized by researchers and clinicians.

  4. Department of Veterans Affairs, Gulf War Veterans’ Illnesses Task Force to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-29

    overall exposure of troops to Leishmania tropica? 3. What were the exposure concentrations to various petroleum products, and their combustion products...have been identified in Veterans of the 1990 – 1991 Gulf War. 3. What were the exposure concentrations to various petroleum products, and their...Research Program within CDMRP (DoD). A clinical study to examine the effects of aspirin and Clopidogrel on biomarkers of Gulf War Veterans

  5. Families' perceptions of end-of-life care in Veterans Affairs versus non-Veterans Affairs facilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Hien; Trancik, Emily; Bailey, F Amos; Ritchie, Christine; Rosenfeld, Kenneth; Shreve, Scott; Furman, Christian; Smith, Dawn; Wolff, Catherine; Casarett, David

    2010-08-01

    The Veterans Affairs (VA) has made significant investments in care for veterans. However, it is not known whether these investments have produced improvements in end-of-life care in the VA compared to other settings. Therefore, the goal of this study was to compare families' perceptions of end-of-life care among patients who died in VA and non-VA facilities. Retrospective 32-item telephone surveys were conducted with family members of patients who died in VA and non-VA facilities. Five Veterans Affairs medical centers and their affiliated nursing homes and outpatient clinics. Patients were eligible if they received any care from a participating VA facility in the last month of life and if they died in an inpatient setting. One family member per patient completed the survey. In bivariate analysis, patients who died in VA facilities (n = 520) had higher mean satisfaction scores compared to those who died in non-VA facilities (n = 89; 59 versus 51; rank sum test p = 0.002). After adjusting for medical center, the overall score was still significantly higher for those dying in the VA (beta = 0.07; confidence interval [CI] = 0.02-0.11; p = 0.004), as was the domain measuring care around the time of death (beta = 0.11; CI = 0.04-0.17; p = 0.001). Families of patients who died in VA facilities rated care as being better than did families of those who died in non-VA facilities. These results provide preliminary evidence that the VA's investment in end-of-life care has contributed to improvements in care in VA facilities compared to non-VA facilities.

  6. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY08 by State and County

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  7. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY06 by Congressional District

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  8. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY09 by Congressional District

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  9. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY07 by Congressional District

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  10. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY06 by State and County

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  11. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY09 by State and County

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  12. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY08 by Congressional District

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  13. Department of Veterans Affairs - Monthly Report to Congress of Data Incidents (April 2014)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This is a monthly report that the VA Office of Information Technology provides to congress about data incidents that took place during the month (April 2014). The...

  14. Ethnic Disparities in Emergency Severity Index Scores among U.S. Veteran's Affairs Emergency Department Patients

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Vigil, Jacob M; Alcock, Joe; Coulombe, Patrick; McPherson, Laurie; Parshall, Mark; Murata, Allison; Brislen, Heather

    2015-01-01

    ... characteristics, and whether these differences varied among male and female Veterans Affairs (VA) ED patients. We used a large national database of electronic medical records of ED patients from twenty-two...

  15. Veterans Affairs Geographic Distribution of Expenditures FY07 by State and County

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Geographic Distribution of VA Expenditures (GDX) is an annual report that shows estimated VA expenditures for major programmatic areas by geographic area (state,...

  16. 38 CFR 1.553a - Time limits for Department of Veterans Affairs response to requests for records.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... of Veterans Affairs Records Other Than Claimant Records § 1.553a Time limits for Department of... jurisdiction and allow the Department of Veterans Affairs additional time to complete its review of the records... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Time limits for...

  17. The influence of veteran race and psychometric testing on veterans affairs posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) disability exam outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marx, Brian P; Engel-Rebitzer, Eden; Bovin, Michelle J; Parker-Guilbert, Kelly S; Moshier, Samantha; Barretto, Kenneth; Szafranski, Derek; Gallagher, Matthew W; Holowka, Darren W; Rosen, Raymond C; Keane, Terence M

    2017-06-01

    This study examined the influence of veterans' race and examiners' use of psychometric testing during a Department of Veterans Affairs posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) disability examination on diagnostic and service connection status outcomes. Participants were 764 veterans enrolled in a national longitudinal registry. Current and lifetime PTSD diagnostic status was determined with the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID) and was compared with PTSD diagnosis conferred upon veterans by their compensation and pension (C&P) examiners as well as with ultimate Veterans Affairs (VA) PTSD service connected status. The concordance rate between independent SCID current PTSD diagnosis and PTSD disability examination diagnosis was 70.4%, and between SCID lifetime PTSD diagnosis and PTSD disability examination diagnosis was 77.7%. Among veterans with current SCID diagnosed PTSD, Black veterans were significantly less likely than White veterans to receive a PTSD diagnosis from their C&P examiner (odds ratio [OR] = .39, p = .003, confidence interval [CI] = .20-.73). Among veterans without current SCID diagnosed PTSD, White veterans were significantly more likely than Black veterans to receive a PTSD diagnosis from their C&P examiner (OR = 4.07, p = .005, CI = 1.51-10.92). Splitting the sample by use of psychometric testing revealed that examinations that did not include psychometric testing demonstrated the same relation between veteran race and diagnostic concordance. However, for examinations in which psychometric testing was used, the racial disparity between SCID PTSD status and disability exam PTSD status was no longer significant. Results suggest that psychometric testing may reduce disparities in VA PTSD disability exam outcomes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. 76 FR 72047 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-21

    ... placement for senior, disabled, homeless and/or at-risk Veterans and their families. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810...

  19. 76 FR 71441 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-17

    ... placement for senior Veterans, homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness and their families... self-sufficiency. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461...

  20. A Health Assessment Survey of Veteran Students: Utilizing a Community College-Veterans Affairs Medical Center Partnership.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Misra-Hebert, Anita D; Santurri, Laura; DeChant, Richard; Watts, Brook; Sehgal, Ashwini R; Aron, David C

    2015-10-01

    To assess health status among student veterans at a community college utilizing a partnership between a Veterans Affairs Medical Center and a community college. Student veterans at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, Ohio, in January to April 2013. A health assessment survey was sent to 978 veteran students. Descriptive analyses to assess prevalence of clinical diagnoses and health behaviors were performed. Logistic regression analyses were performed to assess for independent predictors of functional limitations. 204 students participated in the survey (21% response rate). Self-reported depression and unhealthy behaviors were high. Physical and emotional limitations (45% and 35%, respectively), and pain interfering with work (42%) were reported. Logistic regression analyses confirmed the independent association of self-reported depression with functional limitation (odds ratio [OR] = 3.3, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.4-7.8, p student veterans at a community college. A partnership between a Veterans Affairs Medical Center and a community college can be utilized to help understand the health needs of veteran students. Reprint & Copyright © 2015 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  1. A national clinical quality program for Veterans Affairs catheterization laboratories (from the Veterans Affairs clinical assessment, reporting, and tracking program).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maddox, Thomas M; Plomondon, Mary E; Petrich, Megan; Tsai, Thomas T; Gethoffer, Hans; Noonan, Gregory; Gillespie, Brian; Box, Tamara; Fihn, Stephen D; Jesse, Robert L; Rumsfeld, John S

    2014-12-01

    A "learning health care system", as outlined in a recent Institute of Medicine report, harnesses real-time clinical data to continuously measure and improve clinical care. However, most current efforts to understand and improve the quality of care rely on retrospective chart abstractions complied long after the provision of clinical care. To align more closely with the goals of a learning health care system, we present the novel design and initial results of the Veterans Affairs (VA) Clinical Assessment, Reporting, and Tracking (CART) program-a national clinical quality program for VA cardiac catheterization laboratories that harnesses real-time clinical data to support clinical care and quality-monitoring efforts. Integrated within the VA electronic health record, the CART program uses a specialized software platform to collect real-time patient and procedural data for all VA patients undergoing coronary procedures in VA catheterization laboratories. The program began in 2005 and currently contains data on 434,967 catheterization laboratory procedures, including 272,097 coronary angiograms and 86,481 percutaneous coronary interventions, performed by 801 clinicians on 246,967 patients. We present the initial data from the CART program and describe 3 quality-monitoring programs that use its unique characteristics-procedural and complications feedback to individual labs, coronary device surveillance, and major adverse event peer review. The VA CART program is a novel approach to electronic health record design that supports clinical care, quality, and safety in VA catheterization laboratories. Its approach holds promise in achieving the goals of a learning health care system. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. 2 CFR 801.995 - Principal (Department of Veterans Affairs supplement to government-wide definition at 2 CFR 180...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 2 Grants and Agreements 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Principal (Department of Veterans Affairs supplement to government-wide definition at 2 CFR 180.995.) 801.995 Section 801.995 Grants and Agreements Federal Agency Regulations for Grants and Agreements DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS NONPROCUREMENT...

  3. 2 CFR 801.1010 - Suspending official (Department of Veterans Affairs supplement to government-wide definition at 2...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 2 Grants and Agreements 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Suspending official (Department of Veterans Affairs supplement to government-wide definition at 2 CFR 180.1010). 801.1010 Section 801.1010 Grants and Agreements Federal Agency Regulations for Grants and Agreements DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS NONPROCUREMENT...

  4. 2 CFR 801.930 - Debarring official (Department of Veterans Affairs supplement to government-wide definition at 2...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 2 Grants and Agreements 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Debarring official (Department of Veterans Affairs supplement to government-wide definition at 2 CFR 180.930). 801.930 Section 801.930 Grants and Agreements Federal Agency Regulations for Grants and Agreements DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS NONPROCUREMENT...

  5. Resources and Capabilities of the Department of Veterans Affairs to Provide Timely and Accessible Care to Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussey, Peter S; Ringel, Jeanne S; Ahluwalia, Sangeeta; Price, Rebecca Anhang; Buttorff, Christine; Concannon, Thomas W; Lovejoy, Susan L; Martsolf, Grant R; Rudin, Robert S; Schultz, Dana; Sloss, Elizabeth M; Watkins, Katherine E; Waxman, Daniel; Bauman, Melissa; Briscombe, Brian; Broyles, James R; Burns, Rachel M; Chen, Emily K; DeSantis, Amy Soo Jin; Ecola, Liisa; Fischer, Shira H; Friedberg, Mark W; Gidengil, Courtney A; Ginsburg, Paul B; Gulden, Timothy; Gutierrez, Carlos Ignacio; Hirshman, Samuel; Huang, Christina Y; Kandrack, Ryan; Kress, Amii; Leuschner, Kristin J; MacCarthy, Sarah; Maksabedian, Ervant J; Mann, Sean; Matthews, Luke Joseph; May, Linnea Warren; Mishra, Nishtha; Miyashiro, Lisa; Muchow, Ashley N; Nelson, Jason; Naranjo, Diana; O'Hanlon, Claire E; Pillemer, Francesca; Predmore, Zachary; Ross, Rachel; Ruder, Teague; Rutter, Carolyn M; Uscher-Pines, Lori; Vaiana, Mary E; Vesely, Joseph V; Hosek, Susan D; Farmer, Carrie M

    2016-05-09

    The Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 addressed the need for access to timely, high-quality health care for veterans. Section 201 of the legislation called for an independent assessment of various aspects of veterans' health care. The RAND Corporation was tasked with an assessment of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) current and projected health care capabilities and resources. An examination of data from a variety of sources, along with a survey of VA medical facility leaders, revealed the breadth and depth of VA resources and capabilities: fiscal resources, workforce and human resources, physical infrastructure, interorganizational relationships, and information resources. The assessment identified barriers to the effective use of these resources and capabilities. Analysis of data on access to VA care and the quality of that care showed that almost all veterans live within 40 miles of a VA health facility, but fewer have access to VA specialty care. Veterans usually receive care within 14 days of their desired appointment date, but wait times vary considerably across VA facilities. VA has long played a national leadership role in measuring the quality of health care. The assessment showed that VA health care quality was as good or better on most measures compared with other health systems, but quality performance lagged at some VA facilities. VA will require more resources and capabilities to meet a projected increase in veterans' demand for VA care over the next five years. Options for increasing capacity include accelerated hiring, full nurse practice authority, and expanded use of telehealth.

  6. Effect of the Veterans Affairs Medical System on plastic surgery residency training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravin, Adam G; Gottlieb, Neil B; Wang, Howard T; Meade, Ricardo A; Humphrey, J Stewart; Schwarz, Karl W; Levin, L Scott; Tyler, Douglas S; Erdmann, Detlev

    2006-02-01

    Teaching hospitals within the Veterans Affairs Health System perform the majority of complex and high-risk surgical procedures in the veteran patient population. Residency positions in the Veterans Affairs Medical System are usually part of a rotational educational system within a university-based residency, and plastic surgeons in training are a major work force and health care provider. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the current effect of the Veterans Affairs Medical System on plastic surgery residency training. A 6-year (January of 1998 to December of 2003) review was performed of procedures completed at the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Section of Plastic Surgery. Procedures were divided into the following categories: extremities and trunk; breast and cosmetic; head and neck, including excision of skin lesions; hand surgery; craniomaxillofacial surgery; and other. Only procedures performed in the main operating room were reviewed and analyzed. In addition, a detailed review was performed of major head and neck reconstructions with free tissue transfer. A total of 1655 operative procedures were performed in 1290 patients. The ratio of men to women was 6:1 (1112 men and 178 women). Patients ranged in age from 26 to 97 years (average age, 62.7 years). Procedures in the extremities and trunk (n = 193, 11.7 percent), breast and cosmetic (n = 228, 13.8 percent), hand surgery (n = 155, 9.4 percent), and other (n = 275, 16.6 percent) categories were comparably distributed. Although the head and neck category accounted for the highest number of procedures (n = 766, 46.3 percent), the majority of these procedures were simple excisions of skin tumors (n = 612). There were significantly fewer major craniomaxillofacial cases (n = 38, 2.3 percent). Data from the retrospective analysis reveal that a broad spectrum of plastic surgical procedures is performed within the Veterans Affairs Health System, serving as a tremendous resource for resident training

  7. 75 FR 7648 - Privacy Act of 1974, as Amended; Computer Matching Program (SSA/Department of Veterans Affairs...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-02-22

    .../Veterans Benefits Administration (VA/ VBA))--Match Number 1309 AGENCY: Social Security Administration (SSA... announces a renewal of an existing computer matching program that we are currently conducting with VA/VBA... Matching Program, SSA With the Department of Veterans Affairs/Veterans Benefits Administration (VA/VBA) A...

  8. 76 FR 71439 - Amendment to an Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-17

    ... preference and priority placement for homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness and their...-term self-sufficiency. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461...

  9. The state of Veterans Affairs sleep medicine programs: 2012 inventory results.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarmiento, Kathleen; Rossettie, John; Stepnowsky, Carl; Atwood, Charles; Calvitti, Alan

    2016-03-01

    The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) represents one of the largest integrated health-care systems in the country. In 2012, the Veterans Affairs Sleep Network (VASN) sought to identify available sleep resources at VA medical centers (VAMCs) across the country through a national sleep inventory. The sleep inventory was administered at the annual 2012 VA Sleep Practitioners meeting and by email to sleep contacts at each VAMC. National prosthetics contacts were used to identify personnel at VAMCs without established sleep programs. Follow-up emails and telephone calls were made through March 2013. One hundred eleven VA medical centers were included for analysis. Thirty-nine programs did not respond, and 10 were considered "satellites," referring all sleep services to a larger neighboring VAMC. Sleep programs were stratified based on extent of services offered (i.e., in-lab and home testing, sleep specialty clinics, cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-i)): 28 % were complex sleep programs (CSPs), 46 % were intermediate (ISPs), 9 % were standard (SSPs), and 17 % offered no formal sleep services. Overall, 138,175 clinic visits and 90,904 sleep testing encounters were provided in fiscal year 2011 by 112.1 physicians and clinical psychologists, 100.4 sleep technologists, and 115.3 respiratory therapists. More than half of all programs had home testing and CBT-i programs, and 26 % utilized sleep telehealth. The 2012 VA sleep inventory suggests considerable variability in sleep services within the VA. Demand for sleep services is high, with programs using home testing, sleep telehealth, and a growing number of mid-level providers to improve access to care.

  10. Design of a prostate cancer patient navigation intervention for a Veterans Affairs hospital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nonzee Narissa J

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Patient navigation programs have been launched nationwide in an attempt to reduce racial/ethnic and socio-demographic disparities in cancer care, but few have evaluated outcomes in the prostate cancer setting. The National Cancer Institute-funded Chicago Patient Navigation Research Program (C-PNRP aims to implement and evaluate the efficacy of a patient navigation intervention for predominantly low-income minority patients with an abnormal prostate cancer screening test at a Veterans Affairs (VA hospital in Chicago. Methods/Design From 2006 through 2010, C-PNRP implemented a quasi-experimental intervention whereby trained social worker and lay health navigators worked with veterans with an abnormal prostate screen to proactively identify and resolve personal and systems barriers to care. Men were enrolled at a VA urology clinic and were selected to receive navigated versus usual care based on clinic day. Patient navigators performed activities to facilitate timely follow-up such as appointment reminders, transportation coordination, cancer education, scheduling assistance, and social support as needed. Primary outcome measures included time (days from abnormal screening to diagnosis and time from diagnosis to treatment initiation. Secondary outcomes included psychosocial and demographic predictors of non-compliance and patient satisfaction. Dates of screening, follow-up visits, and treatment were obtained through chart audit, and questionnaires were administered at baseline, after diagnosis, and after treatment initiation. At the VA, 546 patients were enrolled in the study (245 in the navigated arm, 245 in the records-based control arm, and 56 in a subsample of surveyed control subjects. Discussion Given increasing concerns about balancing better health outcomes with lower costs, careful examination of interventions aimed at reducing healthcare disparities attain critical importance. While analysis of the C-PNRP data is

  11. Results of a Veterans Affairs employee education program on antimicrobial stewardship for older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heath, Barbara; Bernhardt, Jaime; Michalski, Thomas J; Crnich, Christopher J; Moehring, Rebekah; Schmader, Kenneth E; Olds, Danielle; Higgins, Patricia A; Jump, Robin L P

    2016-03-01

    We describe a course in the Veterans Affairs (VA) Employee Education System designed to engage nursing staff working in VA long-term care facilities as partners in antimicrobial stewardship. We found that the course addressed an important knowledge gap. Our outcomes suggest opportunities to engage nursing staff in advancing antimicrobial stewardship, particularly in the long-term care setting. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  12. Rapid HIV testing experience at Veterans Affairs North Texas Health Care System's Homeless Stand Downs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooshyar, Dina; Surís, Alina M; Czarnogorski, Maggie; Lepage, James P; Bedimo, Roger; North, Carol S

    2014-01-01

    In the USA, 21% of the estimated 1.1 million people living with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) are unaware they are HIV-infected. In 2011, Veterans Health Administration (VHA)'s Office of Public Health in conjunction with VHA's Health Care for Homeless Veterans Program funded grants to support rapid HIV testing at homeless outreach events because homeless populations are more likely to obtain emergent rather than preventive care and have a higher HIV seroprevalence as compared to the general population. Because of a Veterans Affairs North Texas Health Care System (VANTHCS)'s laboratory testing requirement, VANTHCS partnered with community agencies to offer rapid HIV testing for the first time at VANTHCS' 2011 Homeless Stand Downs in Dallas, Fort Worth, and Texoma, Texas. Homeless Stand Downs are outreach events that connect Veterans with services. Veterans who declined testing were asked their reasons for declining. Comparisons by Homeless Stand Down site used Pearson χ², substituting Fisher's Exact tests for expected cell sizes Veterans attending the Homeless Stand Downs, 261 Veterans reported reasons for declining HIV testing, and 133 Veterans were tested, where 92% of the tested Veterans obtained their test results at the events - all tested negative. Veterans' reported reasons for declining HIV testing included previous negative result (n=168), no time to test (n=49), no risk factors (n=36), testing is not a priority (n=11), uninterested in knowing serostatus (n=6), and HIV-infected (n=3). Only "no time to test" differed significantly by Homeless Stand Down site. Nonresponse rate was 54%. Offering rapid HIV testing at Homeless Stand Downs is a promising testing venue since 15% of Veterans attending VANTHCS' Homeless Stand Downs were tested for HIV, and majority obtained their HIV test results at point-of-care while further research is needed to determine how to improve these rates.

  13. Local Area Unemployment and the Demand for Inpatient Care Among Veterans Affairs Enrollees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Edwin S; Hebert, Paul L; Nelson, Karin M; Hernandez, Susan E; Sylling, Philip W; Fihn, Stephan D; Liu, Chuan-Fen

    2015-08-01

    Prior research examining the relationship between economic conditions and health service demand has focused primarily on outpatient use. This study examines whether local area unemployment, as an indicator of economic conditions, was associated with use of inpatient care, which is theoretically less subject to discretionary use. Using a random sample of 131,603 patients dually enrolled in the Veterans Affairs (VA) Health System and fee-for-service Medicare, we measured VA, Medicare, and total (VA and Medicare) hospitalizations. Overall, local unemployment was not associated with VA, Medicare, or total hospitalization probability. Among low-income veterans exempt from VA copayments, higher local unemployment was moderately associated with a lower probability of hospitalization through Medicare. For veterans subject to VA copayments, higher local unemployment was moderately associated with a higher likelihood of VA hospitalization. These results suggest inpatient use is less sensitive to the economy, although worse economic conditions slightly affected inpatient demand for select veterans. © The Author(s) 2015.

  14. Overlapping buprenorphine, opioid, and benzodiazepine prescriptions among veterans dually enrolled in Department of Veterans Affairs and Medicare Part D.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gellad, Walid F; Zhao, Xinhua; Thorpe, Carolyn T; Thorpe, Joshua M; Sileanu, Florentina E; Cashy, John P; Mor, Maria; Hale, Jennifer A; Radomski, Thomas; Hausmann, Leslie R M; Fine, Michael J; Good, Chester B

    2017-01-01

    Buprenorphine is a key tool in the management of opioid use disorder, but there are growing concerns about abuse, diversion, and safety. These concerns are amplified for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), whose patients may receive care concurrently from multiple prescribers within and outside VA. To illustrate the extent of this challenge, we examined overlapping prescriptions for buprenorphine, opioids, and benzodiazepines among veterans dually enrolled in VA and Medicare Part D. We constructed a cohort of all veterans dually enrolled in VA and Part D who filled an opioid prescription in 2012. We identified patients who received tablet or film buprenorphine products from either source. We calculated the proportion of buprenorphine recipients with any overlapping prescription (based on days supply) for a nonbuprenorphine opioid or benzodiazepine, focusing on veterans who received overlapping prescriptions from a different system than their buprenorphine prescription (Part D buprenorphine recipients receiving overlapping opioids or benzodiazepines from VA and vice versa). There were 1790 dually enrolled veterans with buprenorphine prescriptions, including 760 (43%) from VA and 1091 (61%) from Part D (61 veterans with buprenorphine from both systems were included in each group). Among VA buprenorphine recipients, 199 (26%) received an overlapping opioid prescription and 11 (1%) received an overlapping benzodiazepine prescription from Part D. Among Part D buprenorphine recipients, 208 (19%) received an overlapping opioid prescription and 178 (16%) received an overlapping benzodiazepine prescription from VA. Among VA and Part D buprenorphine recipients with cross-system opioid overlap, 25% (49/199) and 35% (72/208), respectively, had >90 days of overlap. Many buprenorphine recipients receive overlapping prescriptions for opioids and benzodiazepines from a different health care system than the one in which their buprenorphine was filled. These findings highlight

  15. Availability of gynecologic services in the department of veterans affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seelig, Michelle D; Yano, Elizabeth M; Bean-Mayberry, Bevanne; Lanto, Andy B; Washington, Donna L

    2008-01-01

    The optimum approach to providing the Congressionally mandated gender-specific services for which women veterans are eligible is unknown. We evaluated onsite availability of gynecologic services, clinic type and staffing arrangements, and the impact of having a gynecology clinic (GYN) and/or an obstetrician gynecologist (OBGYN) routinely available. We analyzed data from the 2001 national VHA Survey of Women Veterans Health Programs and Practices (n = 136 sites; response rate, 83%). We assessed availability of gynecologic services, and evaluated differences in availability by clinic type (designated women's health provider in primary care [PC], separate women's health clinic for primary care [WHC], and/or separate GYN) and staffing arrangements (OBGYN routinely involved versus not). Out of 133 sites, 77 sites (58%) offered services through a GYN and 56 sites (42%) did not have GYN. Seventy-two (54%) sites had a WHC. More sites with an OBGYN provided endometrial biopsies (91% vs. 20%), IUD insertion (85% vs. 14%), infertility evaluation (56% vs. 23%), infertility treatment (25% vs. none), gynecologic surgery (65 vs. 28%), p gynecologic surgery 2.3 (1.0-5.4). As the VA develops strategic plans for accommodating the growing number of women veterans, leaders should consider focusing on establishing WHC for primary care and routine availability of OBGYN or other qualified clinicians, rather than establishing separate GYN.

  16. Interest in Use of Technology for Healthcare Among Veterans Receiving Treatment for Mental Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Christopher J; McInnes, D Keith; Stolzmann, Kelly; Bauer, Mark S

    2016-10-01

    There is great interest in leveraging technology, including cell phones and computers, to improve healthcare. A range of e-health applications pertaining to mental health such as messaging for prescription refill or mobile device videoconferencing are becoming more available, but little is known about the mental health patient's interest in using these newer applications. We mailed a survey to 300 patients seen in the general mental health clinic of a local Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Survey questions focused on interest in use of cell phones, tablets, and other computers in patients' interactions with the healthcare system. A total of 74 patients, primarily treated for depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or anxiety disorders, returned completed surveys. Nearly all reported having a cell phone (72/74, 97%), but fewer than half reported having a smartphone (35/74, 47%). Overall, a substantial majority (64/74, 86%) had access to an Internet-capable device (smartphone or computer, including tablets). Respondents appeared to prefer computers to cell phones for some health-related communications, but did not express differential interest for other tasks (such as receiving appointment reminders). Interest in use was higher among younger veterans. Most veterans with a mental health diagnosis have access to technology (including cell phones and computers) and are interested in using that technology for some types of healthcare-related communications. While there is capacity to utilize information technology for healthcare purposes in this population, interests vary widely, and a substantial minority does not have access to relevant devices. Although interest in using computers for health-related communication was higher than interest in using cell phones, single-platform technology-based interventions may nonetheless exclude crucial segments of the population.

  17. 76 FR 30244 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-24

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... provision of VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas, and discusses ways to improve and... Healthcare Coordinator, Montana and surrounding region rural health project managers, the Veterans Rural...

  18. 38 CFR 14.518 - Litigation involving beneficiaries in custody of Department of Veterans Affairs employees acting...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... with a writ of habeas corpus involving a beneficiary of the Department of Veterans Affairs in the... steps as in his or her judgment are necessary for self protection. (b) Habeas corpus writs. (1) If a...

  19. The Department of Defense and Veteran Affairs Health Care Joint Venture at Tripler Army Medical Center Needs More Management Oversight

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-18

    E M B E R 1 8 , 2 0 1 3 The Department of Defense and Veteran Affairs Health Care Joint Venture at Tripler Army Medical Center Needs More...Department of Defense and Veteran Affairs Health Care Joint Venture at Tripler Army Medical Center Needs More Management Oversight 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER...Health Care Joint Venture at Tripler Army Medical Center Needs More Management Oversight Objective Our audit objective was to determine whether the

  20. An Examination of the External and Internal Forces that have Shaped the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-05-22

    OF THIS MONOGRAPH IS TO RESEARCH THE INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL SHAPING FORCES THAT HAVE CHANGED THE DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS ( DVA ) AT THE...STRATEGIC AND OPERATIONAL LEVEL. THE HISTORY OF DVA , MAJOR LEGISLATIVE, EXECUTIVE, AND JUDICIAL SHAPING FORCES HAVE MOLDED THE DEPARTMENT. HOWEVER, THE...SCANDALS OF CHARLES FORBES AND THE ARMY ACTIONS AGAINST THE BONUS ARMY MADE LASTING IMPRESSIONS ON THE DEPARTMENT. THE MODERN DVA WAS CREATED WHEN A

  1. Infertility Care Among OEF/OIF/OND Women Veterans in the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattocks, Kristin; Kroll-Desrosiers, Aimee; Zephyrin, Laurie; Katon, Jodie; Weitlauf, Julie; Bastian, Lori; Haskell, Sally; Brandt, Cynthia

    2015-01-01

    Background An increasing number of young women Veterans seek reproductive health care through the VA, yet little is known regarding the provision of infertility care for this population. The VA provides a range of infertility services for Veterans including artificial insemination, but does not provide in vitro fertilization. This study will be the first to characterize infertility care among OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans using VA care. Methods We analyzed data from the OEF/OIF/OND roster file from the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC)—Contingency Tracking System Deployment file of military discharges from October 1, 2001–December 30, 2010, which includes 68,442 women Veterans between the ages of 18 and 45 who utilized VA health care after separating from military service. We examined the receipt of infertility diagnoses and care using ICD-9 and CPT codes. Results Less than 2% (n = 1323) of OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans received an infertility diagnosis during the study period. Compared with women VA users without infertility diagnosis, those with infertility diagnosis were younger, obese, black, or Hispanic, have a service-connected disability rating, a positive screen for military sexual trauma, and a mental health diagnosis. Overall, 22% of women with an infertility diagnosis received an infertility assessment or treatment. Thirty-nine percent of women Veterans receiving infertility assessment or treatment received this care from non-VA providers. Conclusions Overall, a small proportion of OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans received infertility diagnoses from the VA during the study period, and an even smaller proportion received infertility treatment. Nearly 40% of those who received infertility treatments received these treatments from non-VA providers, indicating that the VA may need to examine the training and resources needed to provide this care within the VA. Understanding women’s use of VA infertility services is an important component of understanding VA

  2. Infertility care among OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattocks, Kristin; Kroll-Desrosiers, Aimee; Zephyrin, Laurie; Katon, Jodie; Weitlauf, Julie; Bastian, Lori; Haskell, Sally; Brandt, Cynthia

    2015-04-01

    An increasing number of young women Veterans seek reproductive health care through the VA, yet little is known regarding the provision of infertility care for this population. The VA provides a range of infertility services for Veterans including artificial insemination, but does not provide in vitro fertilization. This study will be the first to characterize infertility care among OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans using VA care. We analyzed data from the OEF/OIF/OND roster file from the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC)-Contingency Tracking System Deployment file of military discharges from October 1, 2001-December 30, 2010, which includes 68,442 women Veterans between the ages of 18 and 45 who utilized VA health care after separating from military service. We examined the receipt of infertility diagnoses and care using ICD-9 and CPT codes. Less than 2% (n=1323) of OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans received an infertility diagnosis during the study period. Compared with women VA users without infertility diagnosis, those with infertility diagnosis were younger, obese, black, or Hispanic, have a service-connected disability rating, a positive screen for military sexual trauma, and a mental health diagnosis. Overall, 22% of women with an infertility diagnosis received an infertility assessment or treatment. Thirty-nine percent of women Veterans receiving infertility assessment or treatment received this care from non-VA providers. Overall, a small proportion of OEF/OIF/OND women Veterans received infertility diagnoses from the VA during the study period, and an even smaller proportion received infertility treatment. Nearly 40% of those who received infertility treatments received these treatments from non-VA providers, indicating that the VA may need to examine the training and resources needed to provide this care within the VA. Understanding women's use of VA infertility services is an important component of understanding VA's commitment to comprehensive medical care for

  3. Measuring the intensity of resident supervision in the department of veterans affairs: the resident supervision index.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrne, John M; Kashner, Michael; Gilman, Stuart C; Aron, David C; Cannon, Grant W; Chang, Barbara K; Godleski, Linda; Golden, Richard M; Henley, Steven S; Holland, Gloria J; Kaminetzky, Catherine P; Keitz, Sheri A; Kirsh, Susan; Muchmore, Elaine A; Wicker, Annie B

    2010-07-01

    To develop a survey instrument designed to quantify supervision by attending physicians in nonprocedural care and to assess the instrument's feasibility and reliability. In 2008, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Academic Affiliations convened an expert panel to adopt a working definition of attending supervision in nonprocedural patient care and to construct a survey to quantify it. Feasibility was field-tested on residents and their supervising attending physicians at primary care internal medicine clinics at the VA Loma Linda Healthcare System in their encounters with randomly selected outpatients diagnosed with either major depressive disorder or diabetes. The authors assessed both interrater concurrent reliability and test-retest reliability. The expert panel adopted the VA's definition of resident supervision and developed the Resident Supervision Index (RSI) to measure supervision in terms of residents' case understanding, attending physicians' contributions to patient care through feedback to the resident, and attending physicians' time (minutes). The RSI was field-tested on 60 residents and 37 attending physicians for 148 supervision episodes from 143 patient encounters. Consent rates were 94% for residents and 97% for attending physicians; test-retest reliability intraclass correlations (ICCs) were 0.93 and 0.88, respectively. Concurrent reliability between residents' and attending physicians' reported time was an ICC of 0.69. The RSI is a feasible and reliable measure of resident supervision that is intended for research studies in graduate medical education focusing on education outcomes, as well as studies assessing quality of care, patient health outcomes, care costs, and clinical workload.

  4. Examining Burnout, Depression, and Self-Compassion in Veterans Affairs Mental Health Staff.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkinson, David M; Rodman, John L; Thuras, Paul D; Shiroma, Paulo R; Lim, Kelvin O

    2017-07-01

    Burnout, a state of emotional exhaustion associated with negative personal and occupational outcomes, is prevalent among healthcare providers. A better understanding of the psychological factors that may be associated with resilience to burnout is essential to develop effective interventions. Self-compassion, which includes kindness toward oneself, recognition of suffering as part of shared human experience, mindfulness, and nonjudgment toward inadequacies and failures, may be one such factor. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between burnout, depression, and self-compassion in Veterans Affairs (VA) mental health staff. Cross-sectional study. VA medical center and affiliated community-based clinics. VA mental health staff. The 19-item Copenhagen Burnout Inventory, the 26-item Self-Compassion Scale, and the Patient Health Questionnaire 2-item depression screen. Demographic information included age, sex, years worked in current position, and number of staff supervised. One hundred and twenty-eight of a potential 379 individuals (33.8%) responded. Clerical support, nursing, social work, psychology, and psychiatry were the major professions represented. Self-compassion was inversely correlated with burnout (r = -0.41, p burnout remained significant even after accounting for depressive symptoms and demographic variables in a multiple linear regression model. Of all the variables examined, self-compassion was the strongest predictor of burnout. The results of this study support the hypothesis that self-compassion may be associated with resilience to burnout. Alternatively, decreased self-compassion may be a downstream effect of increased burnout. Prospective, longitudinal studies are needed to determine the directional relationship between these factors, and whether interventions that cultivate self-compassion may decrease burnout and/or protect against its negative personal and professional outcomes.

  5. 76 FR 72045 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-21

    ... required to provide preference and priority placement for Veterans at risk for homelessness, and provide on-site supportive services. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461...

  6. Conflict of interest issues pertinent to Veterans Affairs Medical Centers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanna, Jennifer; Simiele, Ernest; Lawson, D Curtis; Tyler, Douglas

    2011-09-01

    Conflicts of interest exist when an arrangement potentially exerts inappropriate influence on decision making or professional judgment, or is perceived to do so, and can thus damage the public trust and undermine the integrity of those decisions. Concerns regarding financial conflicts of interest in the medical arena have reached their height as of late, given that physicians now function in a milieu of complex and delicate relationships with pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries. Even when such relationships do not correlate with actual compromise of judgment or patient care, it threatens the credibility of both the health care professional and the institution because of the social perception of the effect of these relationships. Although most institutions in the Western world set forth a code of ethics and conflict-of-interest policies to be followed under threat of termination, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) presents itself as a unique environment in which conflicts of interest are subject to governmental laws, violation of which may not only result in employment-related discipline, but may be sanctioned by civil and criminal penalties. Moreover, these provisions are developed by a national authoritative organization rather than being institution-specific guidelines. Given that many academic physicians working within the VHA may also have a component of their practice in a University setting, it becomes important to understand the differences in policy between these contexts so as not to threaten the public trust in the veracity of decisions made and, therefore, maintain the integrity of the relationship between physician and patient. This article will review aspects of conflict-of-interest policies in the realm of research, financial relationships, foreign travel, and vendor contracting that are particular to the VHA and make it a unique environment to function in as a physician and scientist. Copyright © 2011 Society for

  7. Mastering improvement science skills in the new era of quality and safety: the Veterans Affairs National Quality Scholars Program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrada, Carlos A; Dolansky, Mary A; Singh, Mamta K; Oliver, Brant J; Callaway-Lane, Carol; Splaine, Mark; Gilman, Stuart; Patrician, Patricia A

    2012-04-01

    Healthcare professionals need a new skill set to ensure the success of quality improvement in healthcare. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) initiated the VA National Quality Scholars fellowship in 1998; its mission is to improve the quality of care, ensure safety, accelerate healthcare re-design, and advance the improvement science by educating the next generation of leaders in quality and safety. We describe the critical need for leadership in quality and safety and interprofessional education, illustrate the curriculum, provide lessons learned by fellows, summarize key lessons learned from the implementation of an interprofessional education approach, and present most recent accomplishments. Narrative review. As of 2011, 106 program alumni are embedded in the health care delivery system across the United States. Since 2009, when nurse fellows joined the program, of the first nine graduating interdisciplinary fellows, the tailored curriculum has resulted in five advanced academic degrees, 42 projects, 29 teaching activities, 44 presentations, 36 publications, six grants funded or submitted, and two awards. The VA National Quality Scholars program continues to nurture and develop leaders for the new millennium focusing on interprofessional education. The nations' health care systems need strong interdisciplinary leaders in advanced quality improvement science who are dedicated to improving the overall quality of health and health care. Published 2012. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  8. Veterans Affairs: Better Understanding Needed to Enhance Services to Veterans Readjusting to Civilian Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-01

    Reserve, who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation , or therapy and is in an outpatient status while recovering from a serious injury or...Copies of GAO Reports and Testimony Order by Phone Connect with GAO To Report Fraud, Waste , and Abuse in Federal Programs Congressional Relations Public Affairs Please Print on Recycled Paper.

  9. Veterans Affairs: Data Needed to Help Improve Decisions Concerning Veterans’ Access to Burial Options

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-01

    Appendix II Objectives, Scope, and Methodology 45 Appendix III Printer Friendly Version of National Service Area Map 50 Appendix IV Leading...Unserved Veterans by the end of Fiscal Year 2017, Calculated Using Different Methodologies 15 Figure 4: National Service Area Map 17 Figure 5...different ways using the national service area map we created. 20 2. Methodology 2, proportional distribution of county populations: We multiplied the

  10. Veterans Affairs: Health Care and Benefits for Veterans Exposed to Agent Orange

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-22

    1) Achondroplasia; (2) Cleft lip and cleft palate ; (3) Congenital heart disease; (4) Congenital talipes equinovarus (clubfoot); (5) Esophageal and...cell); breast cancer; cancers of reproductive organs (cervix, uterus, ovary, testes , and penis; excluding prostate); urinary bladder cancer; renal... tests . Each veteran is also required to answer a set of questions relevant to exposure. In September 2000, the Agent Orange Registry was expanded to

  11. Rural veteran access to healthcare services: investigating the role of information and communication technologies in overcoming spatial barriers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schooley, Benjamin L; Horan, Thomas A; Lee, Pamela W; West, Priscilla A

    2010-04-01

    This multimethod pilot study examined patient and practitioner perspectives on the influence of spatial barriers to healthcare access and the role of health information technology in overcoming these barriers. The study included a survey administered to patients attending a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health visit, and a focus group with VA care providers. Descriptive results and focus group findings are presented. Spatial distance is a significant factor for many rural veterans when seeking healthcare. For this sample of rural veterans, a range of telephone, computer, and Internet technologies may become more important for accessing care as Internet access becomes more ubiquitous and as younger veterans begin using the VA health system. The focus group highlighted the negative impact of distance, economic considerations, geographic barriers, and specific medical conditions on access to care. Lack of adequate technology infrastructure was seen as an obstacle to utilization. This study discusses the need to consider distance, travel modes, age, and information technology infrastructure and adoption when designing health information technology to care for rural patients.

  12. Improving Trends in Gender Disparities in the Department of Veterans Affairs: 2008–2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czarnogorski, Maggie; Wright, Steve M.; Hayes, Patricia M.; Haskell, Sally G.

    2014-01-01

    Increasing numbers of women veterans using Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) services has contributed to the need for equitable, high-quality care for women. The VA has evaluated performance measure data by gender since 2006. In 2008, the VA launched a 5-year women’s health redesign, and, in 2011, gender disparity improvement was included on leadership performance plans. We examined data from VA Office of Analytics and Business Intelligence quarterly gender reports for trends in gender disparities in gender-neutral performance measures from 2008 to 2013. Through reporting of data by gender, leadership involvement, electronic reminders, and population management dashboards, VA has seen a decreasing trend in gender inequities on most Health Effectiveness Data and Information Set performance measures. PMID:25100416

  13. Improving trends in gender disparities in the Department of Veterans Affairs: 2008-2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehead, Alison M; Czarnogorski, Maggie; Wright, Steve M; Hayes, Patricia M; Haskell, Sally G

    2014-09-01

    Increasing numbers of women veterans using Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) services has contributed to the need for equitable, high-quality care for women. The VA has evaluated performance measure data by gender since 2006. In 2008, the VA launched a 5-year women's health redesign, and, in 2011, gender disparity improvement was included on leadership performance plans. We examined data from VA Office of Analytics and Business Intelligence quarterly gender reports for trends in gender disparities in gender-neutral performance measures from 2008 to 2013. Through reporting of data by gender, leadership involvement, electronic reminders, and population management dashboards, VA has seen a decreasing trend in gender inequities on most Health Effectiveness Data and Information Set performance measures.

  14. Chaplaincy and mental health in the department of Veterans affairs and department of defense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nieuwsma, Jason A; Rhodes, Jeffrey E; Jackson, George L; Cantrell, William C; Lane, Marian E; Bates, Mark J; Dekraai, Mark B; Bulling, Denise J; Ethridge, Keith; Drescher, Kent D; Fitchett, George; Tenhula, Wendy N; Milstein, Glen; Bray, Robert M; Meador, Keith G

    2013-01-01

    Chaplains play important roles in caring for Veterans and Service members with mental health problems. As part of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Defense (DoD) Integrated Mental Health Strategy, we used a sequential approach to examining intersections between chaplaincy and mental health by gathering and building upon: 1) input from key subject matter experts; 2) quantitative data from the VA / DoD Chaplain Survey (N = 2,163; response rate of 75% in VA and 60% in DoD); and 3) qualitative data from site visits to 33 VA and DoD facilities. Findings indicate that chaplains are extensively involved in caring for individuals with mental health problems, yet integration between mental health and chaplaincy is frequently limited due to difficulties between the disciplines in establishing familiarity and trust. We present recommendations for improving integration of services, and we suggest key domains for future research.

  15. Smoking mediates the effect of conscientiousness on mortality: The Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turiano, Nicholas A; Hill, Patrick L; Roberts, Brent W; Spiro, Avron; Mroczek, Daniel K

    2012-12-01

    This study examined the relationship between conscientiousness and mortality over 18 years and whether smoking behavior mediated this relationship. We utilized data from the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study on 1349 men who completed the Goldberg (1992) adjectival markers of the Big Five. Over the 18-year follow-up, 547 (41%) participants died. Through proportional hazards modeling in a structural equation modeling framework, we found that higher levels of conscientiousness significantly predicted longer life, and that this effect was mediated by current smoking status at baseline. Methodologically, we also demonstrate the effectiveness of using a structural equation modeling framework to evaluate mediation when using a censored outcome such as mortality.

  16. 2 CFR 801.137 - Who in the Department of Veterans Affairs may grant an exception to allow an excluded person to...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 2 Grants and Agreements 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Who in the Department of Veterans Affairs may grant an exception to allow an excluded person to participate in a covered transaction? 801.137... Veterans Affairs may grant an exception to allow an excluded person to participate in a covered transaction...

  17. 38 CFR 17.90 - Medical care for veterans receiving vocational training under 38 U.S.C. chapter 15.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Medical care for veterans... Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS MEDICAL Vocational Training and Health-Care Eligibility Protection for Pension Recipients § 17.90 Medical care for veterans receiving vocational training under 38 U...

  18. Treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Nightmares at a Veterans Affairs Medical Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Detweiler, Mark B.; Pagadala, Bhuvaneshwar; Candelario, Joseph; Boyle, Jennifer S.; Detweiler, Jonna G.; Lutgens, Brian W.

    2016-01-01

    The effectiveness of medications for PTSD in general has been well studied, but the effectiveness of medicatio.ns prescribed specifically for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) nightmares is less well known. This retrospective chart review examined the efficacy of various medications used in actual treatment of PTSD nightmares at one Veteran Affairs Hospital. Records at the Salem, VA Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) were examined from 2009 to 2013 to check for the efficacy of actual treatments used in comparis.on with treatments suggested in three main review articles. The final sample consisted of 327 patients and 478 separate medication trials involving 21 individual medications plus 13 different medication combinations. The three most frequently utilized medications were prazosin (107 trials), risperidone (81 trials), and quetiapine (72 trials). Five medications had 20 or more trials with successful results (partial to full nightmare cessation) in >50% of trials: risperidone (77%, 1.0–6.0 mg), clonidine (63%, 0.1–2.0 mg), quetiapine (50%, 12.5–800.0 mg), mirtazapine (50%; 7.5–30.0 mg), and terazosin (64%, 50.0–300.0 mg). Notably, olanzapine (2.5–10.0) was successful (full remission) in all five prescription trials in five separate patients. Based on the clinical results, the use of risperidone, clonidine, terazosin, and olanzapine warrants additional investigation in clinically controlled trials as medications prescribed specifically for PTSD nightmares. PMID:27999253

  19. Associations Between the Department of Veterans Affairs' Suicide Prevention Campaign and Calls to Related Crisis Lines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossarte, Robert M.; Lu, Naiji; Tu, Xin; Stephens, Brady; Draper, John; Kemp, Janet E.

    2014-01-01

    Objective The Transit Authority Suicide Prevention (TASP) campaign was launched by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in a limited number of U.S. cities to promote the use of crisis lines among veterans of military service. Methods We obtained the daily number of calls to the VCL and National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL) for six implementation cities (where the campaign was active) and four control cities (where there was no TASP campaign messaging) for a 14-month period. To identify changes in call volume associated with campaign implementation, VCL and NSPL daily call counts for three time periods of equal length (pre-campaign, during campaign, and post-campaign) were modeled using a Poisson log-linear regression with inference based on the generalized estimating equations. Results Statistically significant increases in calls to both the VCL and the NSPL were reported during the TASP campaign in implementation cities, but were not reported in control cities during or following the campaign. Secondary outcome measures were also reported for the VCL and included the percentage of callers who are veterans, and calls resulting in a rescue during the study period. Conclusions Results from this study reveal some promise for suicide prevention messaging to promote the use of telephone crisis services and contribute to an emerging area of research examining the effects of campaigns on help seeking. PMID:25364053

  20. Associations between the Department of Veterans Affairs' suicide prevention campaign and calls to related crisis lines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossarte, Robert M; Karras, Elizabeth; Lu, Naiji; Tu, Xin; Stephens, Brady; Draper, John; Kemp, Janet E

    2014-01-01

    The Transit Authority Suicide Prevention (TASP) campaign was launched by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in a limited number of U.S. cities to promote the use of crisis lines among veterans of military service. We obtained the daily number of calls to the VCL and National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL) for six implementation cities (where the campaign was active) and four control cities (where there was no TASP campaign messaging) for a 14-month period. To identify changes in call volume associated with campaign implementation, VCL and NSPL daily call counts for three time periods of equal length (pre-campaign, during campaign, and post-campaign) were modeled using a Poisson log-linear regression with inference based on the generalized estimating equations. Statistically significant increases in calls to both the VCL and the NSPL were reported during the TASP campaign in implementation cities, but were not reported in control cities during or following the campaign. Secondary outcome measures were also reported for the VCL and included the percentage of callers who are veterans, and calls resulting in a rescue during the study period. Results from this study reveal some promise for suicide prevention messaging to promote the use of telephone crisis services and contribute to an emerging area of research examining the effects of campaigns on help seeking.

  1. Veteran Status, Sociodemographic Characteristics, and Healthcare Factors Associated with Visiting a Mental Health Professional.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frenk, Steven M; Sautter, Jessica M; Woodring, Joseph V; Kramarow, Ellen A

    2017-07-01

    Using data from a nationally representative study of the community-dwelling U.S. population, we estimated the percentage of male veterans who visited a mental health professional in the past year, compared it to an estimate from non-veteran males, and examined factors associated with visiting a mental health professional. We found that 10.5% of male veterans visited a mental health professional in the past year, compared to only 5.6% of male non-veterans. In the regression models, veteran status, sociodemographic factors, and healthcare utilization were independently associated with visiting a mental health professional. These findings demonstrate the importance of using nationally representative data to assess the mental healthcare needs of veterans.

  2. National Structural Survey of Veterans Affairs Home-Based Primary Care Programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karuza, Jurgis; Gillespie, Suzanne M; Olsan, Tobie; Cai, Xeuya; Dang, Stuti; Intrator, Orna; Li, Jiejin; Gao, Shan; Kinosian, Bruce; Edes, Thomas

    2017-12-01

    To describe the current structural and practice characteristics of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Home-Based Primary Care (HBPC) program. We designed a national survey and surveyed HBPC program directors on-line using REDCap. We received 236 surveys from 394 identified HBPC sites (60% response rate). HBPC site characteristics were quantified using closed-ended formats. HBPC program directors were most often registered nurses, and HBPC programs primarily served veterans with complex chronic illnesses that were at high risk of hospitalization and nursing home care. Primary care was delivered using interdisciplinary teams, with nurses, social workers, and registered dietitians as team members in more than 90% of the sites. Most often, nurse practitioners were the principal primary care providers (PCPs), typically working with nurse case managers. Nearly 60% of the sites reported dual PCPs involving VA and community-based physicians. Nearly all sites provided access to a core set of comprehensive services and programs (e.g., case management, supportive home health care). At the same time, there were variations according to site (e.g., size, location (urban, rural), use of non-VA hospitals, primary care models used). HBPC sites reflected the rationale and mission of HBPC by focusing on complex chronic illness of home-based veterans and providing comprehensive primary care using interdisciplinary teams. Our next series of studies will examine how HBPC site structural characteristics and care models are related to the processes and outcomes of care to determine whether there are best practice standards that define an optimal HBPC structure and care model or whether multiple approaches to HBPC better serve the needs of veterans. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  3. Trends in Timing of Dialysis Initiation within Versus Outside the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    O’Hare, Ann M.; Batten, Adam; Sulc, Christine A.; Neely, Emily L.; Liu, Chuan-Fen; Hebert, Paul L.

    2015-01-01

    Background and objectives The secular trend toward dialysis initiation at progressively higher levels of eGFR is not well understood. This study compared temporal trends in eGFR at dialysis initiation within versus outside the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)—the largest non–fee-for-service health system in the United States. Design, setting, participants, & measurements The study used linked data from the US Renal Data System, VA, and Medicare to compare temporal trends in eGFR at dialysis initiation between 2000 and 2009 (n=971,543). Veterans who initiated dialysis within the VA were compared with three groups who initiated dialysis outside the VA: (1) veterans whose dialysis was paid for by the VA, (2) veterans whose dialysis was not paid for by the VA, and (3) nonveterans. Logistic regression was used to estimate average predicted probabilities of dialysis initiation at an eGFR≥10 ml/min per 1.73 m2. Results The adjusted probability of starting dialysis at an eGFR≥10 ml/min per 1.73 m2 increased over time for all groups but was lower for veterans who started dialysis within the VA (0.31; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 0.30 to 0.32) than for those starting outside the VA, including veterans whose dialysis was (0.36; 95% CI, 0.35 to 0.38) and was not (0.40; 95% CI, 0.40 to 0.40) paid for by the VA and nonveterans (0.39; 95% CI, 0.39 to 0.39). Differences in eGFR at initiation within versus outside the VA were most pronounced among older patients (P for interaction dialysis initiation within the VA mirrored those in the wider United States dialysis population, but eGFR at initiation was consistently lowest among those who initiated within the VA. Differences in eGFR at initiation within versus outside the VA were especially pronounced in older patients and those with higher 1-year mortality risk. PMID:26206891

  4. 77 FR 14600 - Public Availability of the Department of Veterans Affairs Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 Service Contract...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-12

    ... Management Service, in the Office of Acquisition, Logistics, and Construction at (202) 461-6918, or email... Inventory AGENCY: Department of Veterans Affairs. ACTION: Notice of Public Availability of FY 2011 Service Contract Inventories. SUMMARY: In accordance with Section 743 of Division C of the Consolidated...

  5. Ethnic Disparities in Emergency Severity Index Scores among U.S. Veteran's Affairs Emergency Department Patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacob M Vigil

    Full Text Available The goal of these analyses was to determine whether there were systematic differences in Emergency Severity Index (ESI scores, which are intended to determine priority of treatment and anticipate resource needs, across categories of race and ethnicity, after accounting for patient-presenting vital signs and examiner characteristics, and whether these differences varied among male and female Veterans Affairs (VA ED patients.We used a large national database of electronic medical records of ED patients from twenty-two U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs ED stations to determine whether ESI assignments differ systematically by race or ethnicity. Multi-level, random effects linear modeling was used to control for demographic characteristics and patient's vital signs (heart rate, respiratory rate, and pain level, as well as age, gender, and experience of triage nurses. The dataset included 129,991 VA patients presenting for emergency care between 2008 and 2012 (91% males; 61% non-Hispanic White, 28% Black, 7% Hispanic, 2% Asian, <1% American Indian/Alaska Native, 1% mixed ethnicity and 774 nurses for a total of 359,642 patient/examiner encounters. Approximately 13% of the variance in ESI scores was due to patient characteristics and 21% was due to the nurse characteristics. After controlling for characteristics of nurses and patients, Black patients were assigned less urgent ESI scores than White patients, and this effect was more prominent for Black males compared with Black females. A similar interaction was found for Hispanic males. It remains unclear how these results may generalize to EDs and patient populations outside of the U.S. VA Health Care system.The findings suggest the possibility that subgroups of VA patients receive different ESI ratings in triage, which may have cascading, downstream consequences for patient treatment quality, satisfaction with care, and trust in the health equity of emergency care.

  6. Redesigning a joint replacement program using Lean Six Sigma in a Veterans Affairs hospital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gayed, Benjamin; Black, Stephen; Daggy, Joanne; Munshi, Imtiaz A

    2013-11-01

    In April 2009, an analysis of joint replacement surgical procedures at the Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Indianapolis, Indiana, revealed that total hip and knee replacements incurred $1.4 million in non-Veterans Affairs (VA) care costs with an average length of stay of 6.1 days during fiscal year 2008. The Joint Replacement Program system redesign project was initiated following the Vision-Analysis-Team-Aim-Map-Measure-Change-Sustain (VA-TAMMCS) model to increase efficiency, decrease length of stay, and reduce non-VA care costs. To determine the effectiveness of Lean Six Sigma process improvement methods applied in a VA hospital. Perioperative processes for patients undergoing total joint replacement were redesigned following the VA-TAMMCS model--the VA's official, branded method of Lean Six Sigma process improvement. A multidisciplinary team including the orthopedic surgeons, frontline staff, and executive management identified waste in the current processes and initiated changes to reduce waste and increase efficiency. Data collection included a 1-year baseline period and a 20-month sustainment period. The primary endpoint was length of stay; a secondary analysis considered non-VA care cost reductions. Length of stay decreased 36% overall, decreasing from 5.3 days during the preproject period to 3.4 days during the 20-month sustainment period (P Six Sigma process improvement initiatives in a surgical practice, producing a 36% sustained reduction in length of stay and completely eliminating non-VA care for total hip and knee replacements while increasing total joint replacement volume at this medical center.

  7. Clinical practice guideline implementation strategy patterns in Veterans Affairs primary care clinics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hysong, Sylvia J; Best, Richard G; Pugh, Jacqueline A

    2007-02-01

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) mandated the system-wide implementation of clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) in the mid-1990s, arming all facilities with basic resources to facilitate implementation; despite this resource allocation, significant variability still exists across VA facilities in implementation success. This study compares CPG implementation strategy patterns used by high and low performing primary care clinics in the VA. Descriptive, cross-sectional study of a purposeful sample of six Veterans Affairs Medical Centers (VAMCs) with high and low performance on six CPGs. One hundred and two employees (management, quality improvement, clinic personnel) involved with guideline implementation at each VAMC primary care clinic. MEASURES; Participants reported specific strategies used by their facility to implement guidelines in 1-hour semi-structured interviews. Facilities were classified as high or low performers based on their guideline adherence scores calculated through independently conducted chart reviews. High performing facilities (HPFs) (a) invested significantly in the implementation of the electronic medical record and locally adapting it to provider needs, (b) invested dedicated resources to guideline-related initiatives, and (c) exhibited a clear direction in their strategy choices. Low performing facilities exhibited (a) earlier stages of development for their electronic medical record, (b) reliance on preexisting resources for guideline implementation, with little local adaptation, and (c) no clear direction in their strategy choices. A multifaceted, yet targeted, strategic approach to guideline implementation emphasizing dedicated resources and local adaptation may result in more successful implementation and higher guideline adherence than relying on standardized resources and taxing preexisting channels.

  8. Women Veterans’ Healthcare Delivery Preferences and Use by Military Service Era: Findings from the National Survey of Women Veterans

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Washington, Donna L; Bean-Mayberry, Bevanne; Hamilton, Alison B; Cordasco, Kristina M; Yano, Elizabeth M

    2013-01-01

    The number of women Veterans (WVs) utilizing the Veterans Health Administration (VA) has doubled over the past decade, heightening the importance of understanding their healthcare delivery preferences and utilization patterns...

  9. Nationwide veterans affairs quality measure for cancer: the family assessment of treatment at end of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finlay, Esme; Shreve, Scott; Casarett, David

    2008-08-10

    The Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system has created a national initiative to measure quality of care at the end of life. This article describes the first phase of this national initiative, the Family Assessment of Treatment at End of Life (FATE), in evaluating the quality of end-of-life care for veterans dying with cancer. In the initial phase, next of kin of patients from five VA Medical Centers were contacted 6 weeks after patients' deaths and invited to participate in a telephone interview, and surrogates for 262 cancer patients completed FATE interviews. Decedents were 98% male with an average age of 72 years. There was substantial variation among sites. Higher FATE scores, consistent with family reports of higher satisfaction with care, were associated with palliative care consultation and hospice referral and having a Do Not Resuscitate order at the time of death, whereas an intensive care unit death was associated with lower scores. Early experience with FATE suggests that it will be a helpful tool to characterize end-of-life cancer care and to identify targets for quality improvement.

  10. Impact of ocular surface symptoms on quality of life in a United States veterans affairs population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pouyeh, Bozorgmehr; Viteri, Eduardo; Feuer, William; Lee, David J; Florez, Hermes; Fabian, James A; Perez, Victor L; Galor, Anat

    2012-06-01

    To evaluate the impact of ocular surface symptoms on quality of life in a veteran population receiving eye care services. Cross-sectional survey study. setting: Miami Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC). patient population: Patients seen at the eye clinic between June and August 2010 were asked to fill out the Dry Eye Questionnaire 5 (DEQ5) and the Impact of Dry Eye on Everyday Life (IDEEL) questionnaire. main outcome measures: Correlation between ocular surface symptoms and functionality. Four hundred eighty-nine patients elected to fill out the DEQ5 questionnaire (36% response rate). The mean age of respondents was 66 years (standard deviation 12). Ninety-four percent were male; 62% were white and 37% were black. Using the DEQ5 as a surrogate measure of ocular surface symptoms, 65% of respondents reported at least mild ocular surface symptoms (DEQ5 ≥6) and 27% of them reported severe symptoms (DEQ5 ≥12). Black subjects had a 2-fold increased risk of severe symptoms compared to white subjects (odds ratio 2.06, 95% confidence interval 1.33-3.19). Several medications were associated with a significantly increased risk of severe symptoms, including glaucoma medications (1.7-fold increase), antidepressants (2.3-fold increase), and antihistamines (2.1-fold increase). There was an inverse correlation between DEQ5 and IDEEL scores with regard to ability to perform activities of daily living (n = 391, r = -0.54, P life of Miami VAMC veterans. Eye care professionals should be vigilant in eliciting ocular surface complaints from their patients. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Personal, Medical, and Healthcare Utilization Among Homeless Veterans Served by Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Veteran Facilities

    OpenAIRE

    Gordon, Adam J.; Haas, Gretchen L.; Luther, James F.; Hilton, Michael T.; Goldstein, Gerald

    2010-01-01

    This study assessed differences in personal, medical, and health care utilization characteristics of homeless veterans living in metropolitan versus nonmetropolitan environments. Data were obtained from a Veterans Health Administration (VHA) network sample of homeless veterans. Chi-square tests were used to assess differences in demographics, military history, living situation, medical history, employment status, and health care utilization. Moderator analyses determined whether predictors of...

  12. Assessing Hospital Disaster Readiness Over Time at the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Der-Martirosian, Claudia; Radcliff, Tiffany A; Gable, Alicia R; Riopelle, Deborah; Hagigi, Farhad A; Brewster, Pete; Dobalian, Aram

    2017-02-01

    Introduction There have been numerous initiatives by government and private organizations to help hospitals become better prepared for major disasters and public health emergencies. This study reports on efforts by the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Veterans Health Administration, Office of Emergency Management's (OEM) Comprehensive Emergency Management Program (CEMP) to assess the readiness of VA Medical Centers (VAMCs) across the nation. Hypothesis/Problem This study conducts descriptive analyses of preparedness assessments of VAMCs and examines change in hospital readiness over time. To assess change, quantitative analyses of data from two phases of preparedness assessments (Phase I: 2008-2010; Phase II: 2011-2013) at 137 VAMCs were conducted using 61 unique capabilities assessed during the two phases. The initial five-point Likert-like scale used to rate each capability was collapsed into a dichotomous variable: "not-developed=0" versus "developed=1." To describe changes in preparedness over time, four new categories were created from the Phase I and Phase II dichotomous variables: (1) rated developed in both phases; (2) rated not-developed in Phase I but rated developed in Phase II; (3) rated not-developed in both phases; and (4) rated developed in Phase I but rated not- developed in Phase II. From a total of 61 unique emergency preparedness capabilities, 33 items achieved the desired outcome - they were rated either "developed in both phases" or "became developed" in Phase II for at least 80% of VAMCs. For 14 items, 70%-80% of VAMCs achieved the desired outcome. The remaining 14 items were identified as "low-performing" capabilities, defined as less than 70% of VAMCs achieved the desired outcome. Measuring emergency management capabilities is a necessary first step to improving those capabilities. Furthermore, assessing hospital readiness over time and creating robust hospital readiness assessment tools can help hospitals make informed decisions

  13. Basic fibroblast growth factor predicts cardiovascular disease occurrence in participants from the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark B Zimering

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Aim: Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus. The aim of the present study was to test whether plasma basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF levels predict future cardiovascular disease (CVD occurrence in adults from the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial. Methods: Nearly four- hundred veterans, 40 years of age or older, having a mean baseline diabetes duration of 11.4 years were recruited from outpatient clinics at six geographically distributed sites in the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT. Within the VADT, they were randomly assigned to intensive or standard glycemic treatment, with follow-up as much as seven and one-half years. Cardiovascular disease occurrence was examined at baseline in the patient population and during randomized treatment. Plasma bFGF was determined with a sensitive, specific two-site enzyme-linked immunoassay at the baseline study visit in all 399 subjects. Results: One hundred-five first cardiovascular events occurred in these 399 subjects. The best fit model of risk factors associated with the time to first cardiovascular disease occurrence (in the study over a seven and one-half year period had as significant predictors: prior cardiovascular event, (hazard ratio [HR] 3.378; 95% confidence intervals [CI] 3.079- 3.807; P < .0001, baseline plasma bFGF (HR 1.008; 95% CI 1.002-1.014; P =.01, age, (HR 1.027; 95% CI 1.004-1.051; P =.019, baseline plasma triglycerides, (HR 1.001; 95% CI 1.000-1.002; P =.02 and diabetes duration-treatment interaction (P =.03. Intensive glucose-lowering was associated with significantly decreased hazard ratios for CVD occurrence (0.38-0.63 in patients with known diabetes duration of 0-10 years, and non-significantly increased hazard ratios for CVD occurrence (0.82-1.78 in patients with longer diabetes duration. Conclusion: High level ofplasma basic fibroblast growth factor is a predictive biomarker of future cardiovascular

  14. Systems innovation model: an integrated interdisciplinary team approach pre- and post-bariatric surgery at a veterans affairs (VA) medical center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenberg, Dan; Lohnberg, Jessica A; Kubat, Eric P; Bates, Cheryl C; Greenberg, Lauren M; Frayne, Susan M

    2017-04-01

    Provision of bariatric surgery in the Veterans Health Administration must account for obese veterans' co-morbidity burden and the geographically dispersed location of patients relative to Veterans Affairs (VA) bariatric centers. To evaluate a collaborative, integrated, interdisciplinary bariatric team of surgeons, bariatricians, psychologists, dieticians, and physical therapists working in a hub-and-spokes care model, for pre- and post-bariatric surgery assessment and management. This is a description of an interdisciplinary clinic and bariatric program at a VA healthcare system and a report on program evaluation findings. Retrospective data of a prospective database was abstracted. For program evaluation, we abstracted charts to characterize patient data and conducted a patient survey. Since 2009, 181 veterans have undergone bariatric surgery. Referrals came from 7 western U.S. states. Mean preoperative body mass index was 46 kg/m2 (maximum 71). Mean age was 53 years, with 33% aged>60 years; 79% were male. Medical co-morbidity included diabetes (70%), hypertension (85%), and lower back or extremity joint pain (84%). A psychiatric diagnosis was present in 58%. At 12 months, follow-up was 81% and percent excess body mass index loss was 50.5%. Among 54 sequential clinic patients completing anonymous surveys, overall satisfaction with the interdisciplinary team approach and improved quality of life were high (98% and 94%, respectively). The integrated, interdisciplinary team approach using a hub-and-spokes model is well suited to the VA bariatric surgery population, with its heavy burden of medical and mental health co-morbidity and its system of geographically dispersed patients receiving treatment at specialty centers. As the VA seeks to expand the use of bariatric surgery as an option for obese veterans, interdisciplinary models crafted to address case complexity, care coordination, and long-term outcomes should be part of policy planning efforts. Published by

  15. Obese Veterans Enrolled in a Veterans Affairs Medical Center Outpatient Weight Loss Clinic Are Likely to Experience Disordered Sleep and Posttraumatic Stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Stephanie B; Levy, James R; Farrell-Carnahan, Leah; Nichols, Michelle G; Raman, Shekar

    2016-07-15

    This cross-sectional study aimed to characterize sleep patterns, the quality and duration of sleep, and estimate the prevalence of common sleep disorders and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in a hospital-based Veterans Affairs MOVE! (Managing Overweight Veterans Everywhere) clinic. Participants completed five instruments: the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), Smith's Measure of Morningness/Eveningness, Restless Legs Syndrome Rating Scale, the STOP Questionnaire, and the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Checklist - Civilian Version (PCL-C). Enrolled Veterans (n = 96) were mostly male (78%), African American (49%), mean age 58 (standard deviation [SD] 10.6) years, and mean body mass index (BMI) 38.4 kg/m(2) (SD 8.4). By PSQI, 89% rated sleep quality as "poor" (mean = 11.1, SD = 5.1), consistent with severely impaired sleep. Most were at high risk for sleep disorders including restless leg syndrome (53%), obstructive sleep apnea (66%), and circadian sleep disorders (72%). Forty-seven percent endorsed clinically significant symptoms of PTSD. Hypotheses-generating regression models suggest sleep latency (minutes before falling asleep) was associated with BMI (p = 0.018). Bedtime, getting up time, hours of sleep, waking up in the middle of the night or early morning, having to get up to use the bathroom, inability to breathe comfortably, cough or snore loudly, feeling too cold or too hot, having bad dreams, pain, and frequency of having trouble sleeping, were not significantly associated with BMI. Our cross-sectional study suggests that sleep difficulties are common among Veterans referred to a weight loss program at a Veterans Affairs Hospital. Controlled studies are needed to investigate whether the results are generalizable and whether obesity among veterans is a risk factor for sleep disorders and PTSD. A commentary on this article appears in this issue on page 943. © 2016 American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

  16. Department of Veterans Affairs Quarterly Notice to Congress on Data Breaches First Quarter of Fiscal Year 2014 October 1, 2013 through December 31, 2013

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This is a quarterly notice to congress containing statistics on data breeches for fiscal year 2014 for the first quarter (2014 October 1, 2013 through December 31,...

  17. Collaborating across the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense to integrate mental health and chaplaincy services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nieuwsma, Jason A; Jackson, George L; DeKraai, Mark B; Bulling, Denise J; Cantrell, William C; Rhodes, Jeffrey E; Bates, Mark J; Ethridge, Keith; Lane, Marian E; Tenhula, Wendy N; Batten, Sonja V; Meador, Keith G

    2014-12-01

    Recognizing that clergy and spiritual care providers are a key part of mental health care systems, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Defense (DoD) jointly examined chaplains' current and potential roles in caring for veterans and service members with mental health needs. Our aim was to evaluate the intersection of chaplain and mental health care practices in VA and DoD in order to determine if improvement is needed, and if so, to develop actionable recommendations as indicated by evaluation findings. A 38-member multidisciplinary task group partnered with researchers in designing, implementing, and interpreting a mixed methods study that included: 1) a quantitative survey of VA and DoD chaplains; and 2) qualitative interviews with mental health providers and chaplains. Quantitative: the survey included all full-time VA chaplains and all active duty military chaplains (n = 2,163 completed of 3,464 invited; 62 % response rate). Qualitative: a total of 291 interviews were conducted with mental health providers and chaplains during site visits to 33 VA and DoD facilities. Quantitative: the online survey assessed intersections between chaplaincy and mental health care and took an average of 37 min to complete. Qualitative: the interviews assessed current integration of mental health and chaplain services and took an average of 1 h to complete. When included on interdisciplinary mental health care teams, chaplains feel understood and valued (82.8-100 % of chaplains indicated this, depending on the team). However, findings from the survey and site visits suggest that integration of services is often lacking and can be improved. Closely coordinating with a multidisciplinary task group in conducting a mixed method evaluation of chaplain-mental health integration in VA and DoD helped to ensure that researchers assessed relevant domains and that findings could be rapidly translated into actionable recommendations.

  18. Identification of rheumatoid arthritis patients using an administrative database: a Veterans Affairs study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Bernard; Aslam, Fawad; Petersen, Nancy J; Yu, Hong-Jen; Suarez-Almazor, Maria E

    2012-10-01

    The accuracy of the diagnosis is vital when administrative databases are used for pharmacoepidemiologic and outcome studies. Data pertaining to the utility of databases for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are sparse and variable. We assessed the utility of various diagnostic algorithms to identify RA patients within the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) databases. Using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision code for RA at 2 visits at least 6 months apart, we identified 1,779 patients between October 1, 1998 and September 30, 2009 in our local Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) administrative database. Disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD) use was ascertained from the pharmacy database. Cases were analyzed based on DMARD therapy and RA codes at clinic visits. A total of 543 patients' medical records, selected by stratification and random selection on the basis of their visits, were reviewed to ascertain the clinicians' diagnoses and clinical criteria documentation. Positive predictive values (PPVs) were calculated for various database case identification algorithms using diagnosis of RA by medical record review as the gold standard. The PPV for identification of RA with 2 RA codes 6 months apart was 30.9%. Addition of DMARD therapy increased the PPV to 60.4%. The PPV further increased to 91.4% when having an RA code at the last VAMC rheumatology clinic visit criterion was added. An algorithm using only 2 administrative RA codes 6 months apart had a low PPV for correctly identifying patients with RA in the VHA database. Including DMARD therapy and requiring an RA code at the last visit with a rheumatologist increased the performance of the data extraction algorithm. Copyright © 2012 by the American College of Rheumatology.

  19. Increasing access and quality in Department of Veterans Affairs care at the end of life: a lesson in change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edes, Thomas; Shreve, Scott; Casarett, David

    2007-10-01

    The pursuit of a "good death" remains out of reach for many despite numerous piecemeal solutions to address the growing need for access to quality care at the end of life. In 2002, U.S. veteran deaths were at an all-time high, few Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals had inpatient palliative care services, and there was no reliable approach to meet home hospice needs. The VA embarked on a course of major change to improve veterans' care at the end of life. A coordinated plan to increase access to hospice and palliative care services was established, addressing policy development, program and staff development, collaboration with community hospices, outcomes measurement, and proving value to the organization. To determine progress and monitor resource allocation, workload and outcome measures were established in all settings. Within 3 years, the number of veterans receiving VA-paid home hospice had tripled, all VA hospitals had a palliative care team, 42% of all veterans who died as VA inpatients received a palliative care consultation, and a nationwide network of VA partnerships with community hospice agencies was established. Through a multifaceted strategic plan and a mission of honoring veterans' preferences for care at the end of life, the VA has made rapid progress in improved access to palliative care services for inpatients and outpatients. The VA's experience serves as a powerful example of the magnitude of change possible in a complex health system and a model for improving access and quality of palliative care services in other health systems.

  20. Implementing and Evaluating a Telephone-Based Centralized Maternity Care Coordination Program for Pregnant Veterans in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattocks, Kristin M; Kuzdeba, Judy; Baldor, Rebecca; Casares, Jose; Lombardini, Lisa; Gerber, Megan R

    The purpose of this study was to develop and evaluate a comprehensive, telephonic maternity care coordination (MCC) program for all pregnant veterans enrolled for care at New England Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities that comprise the Veterans Integrated Service Network 1. Telephone interviews were conducted with postpartum women veterans who had participated in the MCC program during their pregnancies. The program evaluation instrument assessed satisfaction and use of MCC services, prenatal education classes, and infant and maternal outcomes (e.g., newborn birthweight, insurance status, maternal depression) using both closed-ended and open-ended questions. A substantial majority (95%) of women enrolled in the MCC program expressed satisfaction with the services they received in the program. Women were most satisfied with help understanding VA maternity benefits and acquiring VA services and equipment, such as breast pumps and pregnancy-related medications. More than one-third of women noted their infants had experienced health problems since delivery, including neonatal intensive care unit hospitalizations. A majority of women planned to return to VA care in the future. Our findings suggest that MCC services play an important role for women veterans as they navigate both VA and non-VA care systems. MCC staff members coordinated maternity, medical, and mental health care services for women veterans. Additionally, by maintaining contact with the veteran during the postpartum period, MCC staff were able to assess the health of the mother and the infant, and refer women and their infants to medical and psychosocial services in the community as needed. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  1. Use of the surgical Apgar score to enhance Veterans Affairs Surgical Quality Improvement Program surgical risk assessment in veterans undergoing major intra-abdominal surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masi, Antonio; Amodeo, Salvatore; Hatzaras, Ioannis; Pinna, Antonio; Rosman, Alan S; Cohen, Steven; Saunders, John K; Berman, Russell; Newman, Elliot; Ballantyne, Garth H; Pachter, Leon H; Melis, Marcovalerio

    2017-04-01

    We investigated whether the surgical Apgar score (SAS) may enhance the Veterans Affairs Surgical Quality Improvement Program (VASQIP) risk assessment for prediction of early postoperative outcomes. We retrospectively evaluated demographics, medical history, procedure, SAS, VASQIP assessment, and postoperative data for patients undergoing major/extensive intra-abdominal surgery at the Manhattan Veterans Affairs between October 2006 and September 2011. End points were overall morbidity and 30-, 60- , and 90-day mortality. Pearson's chi-square, ANOVA, and multivariate regression modeling were employed. Six hundred twenty-nine patients were included. Apgar groups did not differ in age, sex, and race. Low SASs were associated with worse functional status, increased postoperative morbidity, and 30-, 60- , and 90-day mortality rates. SAS did not significantly enhance VASQIP prediction of postoperative outcomes, although a trend was detected. Multivariate analysis confirmed SAS as an independent predictor of morbidity and mortality. SAS effectively identifies veterans at high risk for poor postoperative outcome. Additional studies are necessary to evaluate the role of SAS in enhancing VASQIP risk prediction. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Trabeculectomy Outcomes by Supervised Trainees in a Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biggerstaff, Kristin S; Vincent, Ryan D; Lin, Albert P; Orengo-Nania, Silvia; Frankfort, Benjamin J

    2016-08-01

    To evaluate the outcomes of trabeculectomy performed in an ophthalmology training program. Retrospective study. A total of 160 patients undergoing trabeculectomy performed by a resident or fellow under attending supervision. Trabeculectomy surgeries performed by a supervised resident or fellow surgeon between October 2000 and April 2010 were reviewed. Success was considered to be complete or partial if intraocular pressure (IOP)-lowering medications were not or were required to achieve IOP≤21 mm Hg, respectively. Failure was defined as IOP>21 mm Hg on 2 consecutive visits, loss of light perception vision, IOP≤5 on 2 consecutive visits with associated visual acuity loss of ≥2 lines, or need for surgical intervention. Trabeculectomy survival was determined using Kaplan-Meier analysis through 60 months of follow-up. Final IOP, success/failure rate. Complete success was achieved in 65 patients (41%). The average final IOP of this group was 9.1±3.7 mm Hg. Qualified success was achieved in 56 patients (35%). The average final IOP of this group was 11.5±6.4 mm Hg. At 60 months, the estimated cumulative probability of survival for complete and qualified successes was 28.9% and 63.7%, respectively. Among patients undergoing trabeculectomy by supervised residents or glaucoma fellows in a large Veterans Affairs Medical Center, IOP reduction was significant and similar to published studies. Trabeculectomy remains a successful intervention to lower IOP, with satisfactory success rates in the hands of trainee surgeons.

  3. Suicide Mortality Following Nursing Home Discharge in the Department of Veterans Affairs Health System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szymanski, Benjamin R.; Karlin, Bradley E.; Katz, Ira R.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives. We assessed suicide rates up to 6 months following discharge from US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) nursing homes. Methods. In VA Minimum Data Set (MDS) records, we identified 281 066 live discharges from the 137 VA nursing homes during fiscal years 2002 to 2008. We used MDS and administrative data to assess resident age, gender, behaviors, pain, and indications of psychoses, bipolar disorder, dementia, and depression. We identified vital status and suicide mortality within 6 months of discharge through National Death Index searches. Results. Suicide rates within 6 months of discharge were 88.0 per 100 000 person-years for men and 89.4 overall. Standardized mortality ratios relative to age- and gender-matched individuals in the VA patient population were 2.3 for men (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.9, 2.8) and 2.4 overall (95% CI = 2.0, 2.9). In multivariable proportional hazards regression analyses, resident characteristics, diagnoses, behaviors, and pain were not significantly associated with suicide risk. Conclusions. Suicide risk was elevated following nursing home discharge. This underscores the importance of ongoing VA efforts to enhance discharge planning and timely postdischarge follow-up. PMID:24134359

  4. Advanced earthquake monitoring system for U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs medical buildings--instrumentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalkan, Erol; Banga, Krishna; Ulusoy, Hasan S.; Fletcher, Jon Peter B.; Leith, William S.; Reza, Shahneam; Cheng, Timothy

    2012-01-01

    In collaboration with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the National Strong Motion Project (NSMP; http://nsmp.wr.usgs.gov/) of the U.S. Geological Survey has been installing sophisticated seismic systems that will monitor the structural integrity of 28 VA hospital buildings located in seismically active regions of the conterminous United States, Alaska, and Puerto Rico during earthquake shaking. These advanced monitoring systems, which combine the use of sensitive accelerometers and real-time computer calculations, are designed to determine the structural health of each hospital building rapidly after an event, helping the VA to ensure the safety of patients and staff. This report presents the instrumentation component of this project by providing details of each hospital building, including a summary of its structural, geotechnical, and seismic hazard information, as well as instrumentation objectives and design. The structural-health monitoring component of the project, including data retrieval and processing, damage detection and localization, automated alerting system, and finally data dissemination, will be presented in a separate report.

  5. Longitudinal changes in hearing sensitivity among men: the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Echt, Katharina V; Smith, Sherri L; Burridge, Andrea Backscheider; Spiro, Avron

    2010-10-01

    Over 35 years (1962-1996), participants of the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study (NAS), a study of healthy aging in men, completed up to eight audiometric assessments. This report describes the age-related hearing trajectories of screened men (n=953) aged 23 to 81 years at enrollment, estimates the typical rate of change per decade in hearing sensitivity, and compares longitudinal and cross-sectional estimates of change in hearing sensitivity. The men were followed 14 years on average. The hearing trajectories, based on a mixed-effects model analytical approach to the data, provide converging evidence that hearing loss in aging is pervasive and progressive even among men initially selected for good physical health. Typically the men accrued early losses (>25 dB HL) in hearing sensitivity at the higher frequencies beginning in the early 40s, but maintained hearing thresholds better than 25 dB HL for lower frequencies into old age. The average rate of change per year across frequencies and age was 0.69 dB. Predicted cross-sectional estimates of change in hearing sensitivity reliably approximated longitudinal trajectories, with slight misestimations in the 8th decade.

  6. The Veterans Choice Act: A Qualitative Examination of Rapid Policy Implementation in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattocks, Kristin M; Mengeling, Michelle; Sadler, Anne; Baldor, Rebecca; Bastian, Lori

    2017-07-01

    Congress enacted the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 [Veterans Choice Act (VCA)] to improve access to timely, high-quality health care for Veterans. Although Congress mandated that VCA must begin within 90 days of passage of the legislation, no guidelines were provided in the legislation to ensure that Veterans had access to an adequate number of community providers across different specialties of care or distinct geographic areas, including rural areas of the country. To examine VCA policy implementation across a sampling of Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Medical Centers. We conducted a qualitative study of 43 VHA staff and providers by conducting in-person interviews at 5 VA medical centers in the West, South, and Midwest United States. Interview questions focused on perceptions and experiences with VCA and challenges related to implementation for VHA staff and providers. We identified 3 major themes to guide description of choice implementation: (1) VCA implemented too rapidly with inadequate preparation; (2) community provider networks insufficiently developed; and (3) communication and scheduling problems with subcontractors may lead to further delays in care. Our evaluation suggests that VCA was implemented far too rapidly, with little consideration given to the adequacy of community provider networks available to provide care to Veterans. Given the challenges we have highlighted in VCA implementation, it is imperative that the VHA continue to develop care coordination systems that will allow the Veterans to receive seamless care in the community.

  7. When health insurance is not a factor: national comparison of homeless and nonhomeless US veterans who use Veterans Affairs Emergency Departments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Doran, Kelly M; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2013-12-01

    We examined the proportion of homeless veterans among users of Veterans Affairs (VA) emergency departments (EDs) and compared sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of homeless and nonhomeless VA emergency department users nationally. We used national VA administrative data from fiscal year 2010 for a cross-sectional study comparing homeless (n = 64,091) and nonhomeless (n = 866,621) ED users on sociodemographics, medical and psychiatric diagnoses, and other clinical characteristics. Homeless veterans had 4 times the odds of using EDs than nonhomeless veterans. Multivariate analyses found few differences between homeless and nonhomeless ED users on the medical conditions examined, but homeless ED users were more likely to have been diagnosed with a drug use disorder (odds ratio [OR] = 4.12; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 3.97, 4.27), alcohol use disorder (OR = 3.67; 95% CI = 3.55, 3.79), or schizophrenia (OR = 3.44; 95% CI = 3.25, 3.64) in the past year. In a national integrated health care system with no specific requirements for health insurance, the major differences found between homeless and nonhomeless ED users were high rates of psychiatric and substance abuse diagnoses. EDs may be an important location for specialized homeless outreach (or "in" reach) services to address mental health and addictive disorders.

  8. Development of a Veterans Affairs hybrid operating room for transcatheter aortic valve replacement in the cardiac catheterization laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shunk, Kendrick A; Zimmet, Jeffrey; Cason, Brian; Speiser, Bernadette; Tseng, Elaine E

    2015-03-01

    Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) revolutionized the treatment of aortic stenosis. Developing a TAVR program with a custom-built hybrid operating room (HOR) outside the surgical operating room area poses unique challenges in Veterans Affairs (VA) institutions. To present the process by which the San Francisco VA Medical Center developed a VA-approved TAVR program, in which an HOR exists in a cardiac catheterization laboratory, as a guideline for future programs. Retrospective review of each required approval process for developing an HOR in a cardiac catheterization laboratory in a VA designated for complex surgery. Participants included San Francisco VA Medical Center health care professionals and individuals responsible for new program initiation in VA institutions. External reviews by industry vendors, the VA Central Office, and the Office for Construction, Facilities, and Management and an internal Healthcare Failure Mode and Effect Analysis. The timeline for each process. Developing a TAVR program required vetting and approval from industry vendors, who provided training and expertise. Architectural plans for construction of the HOR began in 2010-2011, followed by approval from Edwards Lifesciences, Inc, in 2012 and fundamentals training on February 8 and 9, 2013. Following a pilot launch of the first VA TAVR program at the Houston VA Medical Center, subsequent programs were required to submit a plan to the VA Central Office for proposed restructuring of their clinical programs. After the San Francisco VA Medical Center proposal submission on February 3, 2013, a site visit consisting of a National Chief of Catheterization Laboratory Managers, a cardiac surgeon, and an interventional cardiologist with TAVR experience was conducted on April 12, 2013. During construction, HOR plans were inspected by the Office for Construction, Facilities, and Management followed by on-site inspection on August 8, 2013, to assess the adequacy of the HOR, newly built

  9. Accuracy and completeness of mortality data in the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maynard Charles

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background One of the national mortality databases in the U.S. is the Beneficiary Identification and Record Locator Subsystem (BIRLS Death File that contains death dates of those who have received any benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA. The completeness of this database was shown to vary widely from cohort to cohort in previous studies. Three other sources of death dates are available in the VA that can complement the BIRLS Death File. The objective of this study is to evaluate the completeness and accuracy of death dates in the four sources available in the VA and to examine whether these four sources can be combined into a database with improved completeness and accuracy. Methods A random sample of 3,000 was drawn from 8.3 million veterans who received benefits from the VA between 1997 and 1999 and were alive on January 1, 1999 according to at least one source. Death dates found in BIRLS Death File, Medical SAS Inpatient Datasets, Medicare Vital Status, and Social Security Administration (SSA Death Master File were compared with dates obtained from the National Death Index. A combined dataset from these sources was also compared with National Death Index dates. Results Compared with the National Death Index, sensitivity (or the percentage of death dates correctly recorded in a source was 77.4% for BIRLS Death File, 12.0% for Medical SAS Inpatient Datasets, 83.2% for Medicare Vital Status, and 92.1% for SSA Death Master File. Over 95% of death dates in these sources agreed exactly with dates from the National Death Index. Death dates in the combined dataset demonstrated 98.3% sensitivity and 97.6% exact agreement with dates from the National Death Index. Conclusion The BIRLS Death File is not an adequate source of mortality data for the VA population due to incompleteness. When the four sources of mortality data are carefully combined, the resulting dataset can provide more timely data for death ascertainment than the

  10. Adaptation of Lean Six Sigma Methodologies for the Evaluation of Veterans Choice Program at 3 Urban Veterans Affairs Medical Centers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ball, Sherry L; Stevenson, Lauren D; Ladebue, Amy C; McCreight, Marina S; Lawrence, Emily C; Oestreich, Taryn; Lambert-Kerzner, Anne C

    2017-07-01

    The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is adapting to meet the changing needs of our Veterans. VHA leaders are promoting quality improvement strategies including Lean Six Sigma (LSS). This study used LSS tools to evaluate the Veterans Choice Program (VCP), a program that aims to improve access to health care services for eligible Veterans by expanding health care options to non-VHA providers. LSS was utilized to assess the current process and efficiency patterns of the VCP at 3 VHA Medical Centers. LSS techniques were used to assess data obtained through semistructured interviews with Veterans, staff, and providers to describe and evaluate the VCP process by identifying wastes and defects. The LSS methodology facilitated the process of targeting priorities for improvement and constructing suggestions to close identified gaps and inefficiencies. Identified key process wastes included inefficient exchange of clinical information between stakeholders in and outside of the VHA; poor dissemination of VCP programmatic information; shortages of VCP-participating providers; duplication of appointments; declines in care coordination; and lack of program adaptability to local processes. Recommendations for improvement were formulated using LSS. This evaluation illustrates how LSS can be utilized to assess a nationally mandated health care program. By focusing on stakeholder, staff, and Veteran perspectives, process defects in the VCP were identified and improvement recommendations were made. However, the current LSS language used is not intuitive in health care and similar applications of LSS may consider using new language and goals adapted specifically for health care.

  11. Allowing Family to be Family: End-of-Life Care in Veterans Affairs Medical Foster Homes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manheim, Chelsea E; Haverhals, Leah M; Jones, Jacqueline; Levy, Cari R

    2016-01-01

    The Medical Foster Home program is a unique long-term care program coordinated by the Veterans Health Administration. The program pairs Veterans with private, 24-hour a day community-based caregivers who often care for Veterans until the end of life. This qualitative study explored the experiences of care coordination for Medical Foster Home Veterans at the end of life with eight Veterans' family members, five Medical Foster Home caregivers, and seven Veterans Health Administration Home-Based Primary Care team members. A case study, qualitative content analysis identified these themes addressing care coordination and impact of the Medical Foster Home model on those involved: (a) Medical Foster Home program supports Veterans' families; (b) Medical Foster Home program supports the caregiver as family; (c) Veterans' needs are met socially and culturally at the end of life; and (d) the changing needs of Veterans, families, and caregivers at Veterans' end of life are addressed. Insights into how to best support Medical Foster Home caregivers caring for Veterans at the end of life were gained including the need for more and better respite options and how caregivers are compensated in the month of the Veteran's death, as well as suggestions to navigate end-of-life care coordination with multiple stakeholders involved.

  12. Variation in Formulary Management Practices Within the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radomski, Thomas R; Good, Chester B; Thorpe, Carolyn T; Zhao, Xinhua; Marcum, Zachary A; Glassman, Peter A; Lowe, John; Mor, Maria K; Fine, Michael J; Gellad, Walid F

    2016-02-01

    All Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers (VAMCs) operate under a single national drug formulary, yet substantial variation in prescribing and spending exists across facilities. Local management of the national formulary may differ across VAMCs and may be one cause of this variation. To characterize variation in the management of nonformulary medication requests and pharmacy and therapeutics (P&T) committee member perceptions of the formulary environment at VAMCs nationwide. We performed an online survey of the chief of pharmacy and an additional staff pharmacist and physician on the P&T committee at all VAMCs. Respondents were asked questions regarding criteria for use for nonformulary medications, specific procedures for ordering nonformulary medications in general and specific lipid-lowering and diabetes agents, the appeals process, and the formulary environment at their VAMCs. We compared responses across facilities and between chiefs of pharmacy, pharmacists, and physicians. A total of 212 chief pharmacists (n = 80), staff pharmacists (n = 78), and physicians (n = 54) responded, for an overall response rate of 49%. In total, 107/143 (75%) different VAMCs were represented. The majority of VAMCs reported adhering to national criteria for use, with 38 (36%) being very adherent and 69 (65%) being mostly adherent. There was substantial variation between VAMCs regarding how nonformulary drugs were ordered, evaluated, and appealed. The nonformulary lipid-lowering drugs ezetimibe, rosuvastatin, and atorvastatin were viewable to providers in the order entry screen at 67 (63%), 67 (63%), and 64 (60%) VAMCs, respectively. The nonformulary diabetes medication pioglitazone was only viewable at 58 (55%) VAMCs. In the remaining VAMCs, providers could not order these nonformulary drugs through the normal order-entry process. For questions about the formulary environment, physician respondent perceptions differed from those of staff pharmacists and chief pharmacists

  13. Foot care education and self management behaviors in diverse veterans with diabetes

    OpenAIRE

    Olson, Jonathan

    2009-01-01

    Jonathan M Olson1, Molly T Hogan2, Leonard M Pogach3, Mangala Rajan3, Gregory J Raugi4, Gayle E Reiber51University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA, USA; 2Department of Internal Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA, USA; 3Department of Veterans Affairs, New Jersey Healthcare System, Center for Healthcare Knowledge Management, East Orange, NJ, USA; 4Division of Dermatology, VA Puget Sound Healthcare System, Department of Veterans Affairs, Seattle, WA,...

  14. Safety risks with investigational drugs: Pharmacy practices and perceptions in the veterans affairs health system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Jennifer L; Brown, Jamie N

    2015-06-01

    Rigorous practices for safe dispensing of investigational drugs are not standardized. This investigation sought to identify error-prevention processes utilized in the provision of investigational drug services (IDS) and to characterize pharmacists' perceptions about safety risks posed by investigational drugs. An electronic questionnaire was distributed to an audience of IDS pharmacists within the Veteran Affairs Health System. Multiple facets were examined including demographics, perceptions of medication safety, and standard processes used to support investigational drug protocols. Twenty-one respondents (32.8% response rate) from the Northeast, Midwest, South, West, and Non-contiguous United States participated. The mean number of pharmacist full-time equivalents (FTEs) dedicated to the IDS was 0.77 per site with 0.2 technician FTEs. The mean number of active protocols was 22. Seventeen respondents (81%) indicated some level of concern for safety risks. Concerns related to the packaging of medications were expressed, most notably lack of product differentiation, expiration dating, barcodes, and choice of font size or color. Regarding medication safety practices, the majority of sites had specific procedures in place for storing and securing drug supply, temperature monitoring, and prescription labeling. Repackaging bulk items and proactive error-identification strategies were less common. Sixty-seven percent of respondents reported that an independent double check was not routinely performed. Medication safety concerns exist among pharmacists in an investigational drug service; however, a variety of measures have been employed to improve medication safety practices. Best practices for the safe dispensing of investigational medications should be developed in order to standardize these error-prevention strategies.

  15. Rosiglitazone treatment and cardiovascular disease in the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Florez, H; Reaven, P D; Bahn, G; Moritz, T; Warren, S; Marks, J; Reda, D; Duckworth, W; Abraira, C; Hayward, R; Emanuele, N

    2015-01-01

    Aims To evaluate the relationship between patterns of rosiglitazone use and cardiovascular (CV) outcomes in the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT). Methods Time-dependent survival analyses, case–control and 1 : 1 propensity matching approaches were used to examine the relationship between patterns of rosiglitazone use and CV outcomes in the VADT, a randomized controlled study that assessed the effect of intensive glycaemic control on CV outcomes in 1791 patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) whose mean age was 60.4 ± 9 years. Participants were recruited between 1 December 2000 and 31 May 2003, and were followed for 5–7.5 years (median 5.6) with a final visit by 31 May 2008. Rosiglitazone (4 mg and 8 mg daily) was initiated per protocol in both the intensive-therapy and standard-therapy groups. Main outcomes included a composite CV outcome, CV death and myocardial infarction (MI). Results Both daily doses of rosiglitazone were associated with lower risk for the primary composite CV outcome [4 mg: hazard ratio (HR) 0.63, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.49–0.81 and 8 mg: HR 0.60, 95% CI 0.49–0.75] after adjusting for demographic and clinical covariates. A reduction in CV death was also observed (HR 0.25, p < 0.001, for both 4 and 8 mg/day rosiglitazone); however, the effect on MI was less evident for 8 mg/day and not significant for 4 mg/day. Conclusions In older patients with T2D the use of rosiglitazone was associated with decreased risk of the primary CV composite outcome and CV death. Rosiglitazone use did not lead to a higher risk of MI. PMID:25964070

  16. A Link Between Hypoglycemia and Progression of Atherosclerosis in the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahn, Gideon D.

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE To determine whether a link exists between serious hypoglycemia and progression of atherosclerosis in a substudy of the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT) and to examine whether glycemic control during the VADT modified the association between serious hypoglycemia and coronary artery calcium (CAC) progression. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS Serious hypoglycemia was defined as severe episodes with loss of consciousness or requiring assistance or documented glucose <50 mg/dL. Progression of CAC was determined in 197 participants with baseline and follow-up computed tomography scans. RESULTS During an average follow-up of 4.5 years between scans, 97 participants reported severe hypoglycemia (n = 23) or glucose <50 mg/dL (n = 74). Serious hypoglycemia occurred more frequently in the intensive therapy group than in the standard treatment group (74% vs. 21%, P < 0.01). Serious hypoglycemia was not associated with progression of CAC in the entire cohort, but the interaction between serious hypoglycemia and treatment was significant (P < 0.01). Participants with serious hypoglycemia in the standard therapy group, but not in the intensive therapy group, had ∼50% greater progression of CAC than those without serious hypoglycemia (median 11.15 vs. 5.4 mm3, P = 0.02). Adjustment for all baseline differences, including CAC, or time-varying risk factors during the trial, did not change the results. Examining the effect of serious hypoglycemia by on-trial HbA1c levels (cutoff 7.5%) yielded similar results. In addition, a dose-response relationship was found between serious hypoglycemia and CAC progression in the standard therapy group only. CONCLUSIONS Despite a higher frequency of serious hypoglycemia in the intensive therapy group, serious hypoglycemia was associated with progression of CAC in only the standard therapy group. PMID:26786575

  17. Comparative safety of benzodiazepines and opioids among veterans affairs patients with posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Eric J; Malte, Carol A; Grossbard, Joel; Saxon, Andrew J; Imel, Zac E; Kivlahan, Daniel R

    2013-01-01

    Although Veterans Affairs (VA) patients with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are prescribed benzodiazepines and opioids in addition to recommended pharmacotherapies, little is known about the safety of these medications. This study compared the 2-year incidence of adverse events among VA patients with PTSD exposed to combinations of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or serotonin/norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), benzodiazepines, and opioids. This retrospective cohort study used VA administrative data from 2004 to 2010 to identify and follow 5236 VA patients with PTSD with new episodes of (1) SSRIs/SNRIs only; (2) concurrent SSRIs/SNRIs and benzodiazepines; and (3) concurrent SSRIs/SNRIs, benzodiazepines, and opioids. Outcome measures were the 2-year incidence and adjusted hazard ratios (AHR) of mental health and medicine/surgery hospitalizations, emergency department visits, harmful events (eg, injuries and death), and any adverse event after adjustment for demographics, clinical covariates, and adverse event history. Compared with SSRIs/SNRIs only, the adjusted risk of mental health hospitalizations (AHR: 1.87; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.37-2.53) was greater among patients prescribed SSRIs/SNRIs and benzodiazepines concurrently. The AHR of mental health hospitalizations (AHR: 2.00; 95% CI: 1.35-2.98), medicine/surgery hospitalizations (AHR: 4.86; 95% CI: 3.30-7.14), emergency department visits (AHR: 2.01; 95% CI: 1.53-2.65), any harmful event (2.92; 95% CI: 2.21-3.84), and any adverse event (AHR: 2.65; 95% CI: 2.18-3.23) were all significantly greater among patients prescribed SSRIs/SNRIs, benzodiazepines, and opioids than among those prescribed SSRIs/SNRIs only. Concurrently prescribing SSRIs/SNRIs, benzodiazepines, and opioids among patients with PTSD is associated with adverse events. Although efforts are warranted to monitor patients who are prescribed combinations of these medications to prevent adverse events, these results

  18. Benchmarking US Department of Veterans Affairs dermatologic services: results from a national survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, L Kendall; Townsend, Leilani; Orser, Michael L; Mulhausen, Jennifer; Duke, Jodi; Waxweiler, Weston T; Dellavalle, Robert P

    2012-03-01

    How well Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) dermatology services provide clinical care, medical education, and innovative research is a largely unexplored topic in the literature. We sought to benchmark VA dermatology services by surveying VA dermatologists about their environment, resources, and the pros and cons of working in the VA. Printed surveys were mailed to VA dermatologists and responses were compiled and analyzed. Of 105 dermatology services surveyed, 48% returned surveys completed by board-certified dermatologists (n = 50); 20 surveys completed by nondermatologists were excluded from the analysis. Most services trained dermatology residents (72%) and medical students (80%). One third of services reported significant research involvement. Qualitative analysis revealed the academic environment, patient population, and decreased business management responsibilities as the 3 most commonly cited advantages to VA employment. The most commonly listed disadvantages included low salaries, bureaucracy, and lack of resources. The survey data were self-reported and not independently verified. Not all services returned the survey. Outpatient VA dermatology services accomplish significant primary care and preventive services (eg, sun safety counseling, skin cancer screening, and treatment). However, the small number of dedicated dermatology services, their irregular geographic distribution, and the lack of staffing and resources may adversely affect optimal patient care. Dermatologist responses regarding the positive and negative aspects of working in the VA system may lead to improved management strategies to better retain and recruit dermatologists to provide patient care, medical education, and medical research despite dramatically lower dermatologist salaries within the VA system compared with private practice. Copyright © 2011 American Academy of Dermatology, Inc. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Department of Veterans Affairs Cooperative Studies Program Network of Dedicated Enrollment Sites: Implications for Surgical Trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakaeen, Faisal G; Reda, Domenic J; Gelijns, Annetine C; Cornwell, Lorraine; Omer, Shuab; Al Jurdi, Rayan; Kougias, Panos; Anaya, Daniel; Berger, David H; Huang, Grant D

    2014-06-01

    Surgical clinical trials have played a critical role in shaping clinical practice, yet their launch and conduct remain challenging. Innovative approaches to carrying out such studies can not only help transform how trials produce definitive evidence but also move the field toward increased participation in trials. To review a recently launched pilot program aimed at enhancing patient enrollment and improving surgical trial operations at individual sites and nationally. After a solicitation to create a national network focused on making the conduct of clinical trials more efficient, 10 Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) sites were selected. These sites, collectively called the Cooperative Studies Program (CSP) Network of Dedicated Enrollment Sites (NODES), were evaluated with regard to their previous participation in CSP multisite trials, the strength of the local clinical research environment, and presentation of innovative plans to coordinate and enhance the operations of local CSP studies and share best practices with other centers. Node accountability was also emphasized and involved metrics that tracked productivity and efficiency. Building from available CSP experience in a range of clinical trials, including ones involving surgical interventions, NODES provides VA surgeons with resources for facilitating timely study initiation, determining patient availability, and addressing enrollment barriers. Such resources are particularly important for surgical studies, which often face challenges in patient recruitment and retention. In addition, NODES can maintain qualified and trained personnel at sites to support surgeons with limited time to fulfill the numerous administrative and regulatory responsibilities that often fall to the investigators. The VA's approach to enhancing trial efficiency may reinvigorate interest in surgical trials by offering a redesigned cooperative framework that builds on a core of high-yield sites and could mitigate traditional

  20. Complications and Failure to Rescue After Inpatient Noncardiac Surgery in the Veterans Affairs Health System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massarweh, Nader N; Kougias, Panagiotis; Wilson, Mark A

    2016-12-01

    The quality of surgical care in the Veterans Health Administration improved markedly in the 1990s after implementation of the Veterans Affairs (VA) National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (now called the VA Surgical Quality Improvement Program). Although there have been many recent evaluations of surgical care in the private sector, to date, a contemporary global evaluation has not been performed within the VA health system. To provide a contemporaneous report of noncardiac postoperative outcomes in the VA health system during the past 15 years. A retrospective cohort study was conducted using data from the VA Surgical Quality Improvement Program among veterans who underwent inpatient general, vascular, thoracic, genitourinary, neurosurgical, orthopedic, or spine surgery from October 1, 1999, through September 30, 2014. Rates of 30-day morbidity, mortality, and failure to rescue (FTR) over time. Among 704 901 patients (mean [SD] age, 63.7 [11.8] years; 676 750 [96%] male) undergoing noncardiac surgical procedures at 143 hospitals, complications occurred in 97 836 patients (13.9%), major complications occurred in 66 816 (9.5%), FTR occurred in 12 648 of the 97 836 patients with complications (12.9%), FTR after major complications occurred in 12 223 of the 66 816 patients with major complications (18.3%), and 18 924 patients (2.7%) died within 30 days of surgery. There were significant decreases from 2000 to 2014 in morbidity (8202 of 59 421 [13.8%] vs 3368 of 32 785 [10.3%]), major complications (5832 of 59 421 [9.8%] vs 2284 of 32 785 [7%]), FTR (1445 of 8202 [17.6%] vs 351 of 3368 [10.4%]), and FTR after major complications (1388 of 5832 [23.8%] vs 343 of 2284 [15%]) (trend test, P < .001 for all). Although there were no clinically meaningful differences in rates of complications and major complications across hospital risk-adjusted mortality quintiles (any complications: lowest quintile, 20 945 of 147 721 [14.2%] vs highest

  1. 2007 Veterans Employability Research Survey

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The 2007 Veterans Employability Research Survey (VERS) was conducted to determine the factors that impact veterans' employability resulting from participation in the...

  2. Women Veteran Report

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This report summarizes the history of women Veterans in the military and as Veterans. It profiles the characteristics of women Veterans in 2015, and illustrates how...

  3. Patient perspectives on an opioid overdose education and naloxone distribution program in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliva, Elizabeth M; Nevedal, Andrea; Lewis, Eleanor T; McCaa, Matthew D; Cochran, Michael F; Konicki, P Eric; Davis, Corey S; Wilder, Christine

    2016-01-01

    In an effort to prevent opioid overdose mortality among Veterans, Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities began implementing opioid overdose education and naloxone distribution (OEND) in 2013 and a national program began in 2014. VA is the first national health care system to implement OEND. The goal of this study is to examine patient perceptions of OEND training and naloxone kits. Four focus groups were conducted between December 2014 and February 2015 with 21 patients trained in OEND. Participants were recruited from a VA residential facility in California with a substance use disorder treatment program (mandatory OEND training) and a homeless program (optional OEND training). Data were analyzed using matrices and open and closed coding approaches to identify participants' perspectives on OEND training including benefits, concerns, differing opinions, and suggestions for improvement. Veterans thought OEND training was interesting, novel, and empowering, and that naloxone kits will save lives. Some veterans expressed concern about using syringes in the kits. A few patients who never used opioids were not interested in receiving kits. Veterans had differing opinions about legal and liability issues, whether naloxone kits might contribute to relapse, and whether and how to involve family in training. Some veterans expressed uncertainty about the effects of naloxone. Suggested improvements included active learning approaches, enhanced training materials, and increased advertisement. OEND training was generally well received among study participants, including those with no indication for a naloxone kit. Patients described a need for OEND and believed it could save lives. Patient feedback on OEND training benefits, concerns, opinions, and suggestions provides important insights to inform future OEND training programs both within VA and in other health care settings. Training is critical to maximizing the potential for OEND to save lives, and this study

  4. Mental Health and Medical Health Disparities in 5135 Transgender Veterans Receiving Healthcare in the Veterans Health Administration: A Case-Control Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, George R; Jones, Kenneth T

    2016-04-01

    There are no large controlled studies of health disparities in transgender (TG) or gender dysphoric patients. The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is the largest healthcare system in the United States and was an early adopter of electronic health records. We sought to determine whether medical and/or mental health disparities exist in VHA for clinically diagnosed TG veterans compared to matched veterans without a clinical diagnosis consistent with TG status. Using four ICD-9-CM codes consistent with TG identification, a cohort of 5135 TG veterans treated in VHA between 1996 and 2013 was identified. Veterans without one of these diagnoses were matched 1:3 in a case-control design to determine if medical and/or mental health disparities exist in the TG veteran population. In 2013, the prevalence of TG veterans with a qualifying clinical diagnosis was 58/100,000 patients. Statistically significant disparities were present in the TG cohort for all 10 mental health conditions examined, including depression, suicidality, serious mental illnesses, and post-traumatic stress disorder. TG Veterans were more likely to have been homeless, to have reported sexual trauma while on active duty, and to have been incarcerated. Significant disparities in the prevalence of medical diagnoses for TG veterans were also detected for 16/17 diagnoses examined, with HIV disease representing the largest disparity between groups. This is the first study to examine a large cohort of clinically diagnosed TG patients for psychiatric and medical health outcome disparities using longitudinal, retrospective medical chart data with a matched control group. TG veterans were found to have global disparities in psychiatric and medical diagnoses compared to matched non-TG veterans. These findings have significant implications for policy, healthcare screening, and service delivery in VHA and potentially other healthcare systems.

  5. AVTA Federal Fleet PEV Readiness Data Logging and Characterization Study for Department of Veterans Affairs – VA Manhattan Campus

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stephen Schey; Jim Francfort

    2014-10-01

    This report focuses on the Department of Veterans Affairs, VA Manhattan Campus (VA- Manhattan) fleet to identify the daily operational characteristics of select vehicles and report findings on vehicle and mission characterizations to support successful introduction of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) into the agency’s fleet. Individual observations of these selected vehicles provide the basis for recommendations related to electric vehicle adoption and whether a battery electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (collectively called PEVs) can fulfill the mission requirements.

  6. The value from investments in health information technology at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrne, Colene M; Mercincavage, Lauren M; Pan, Eric C; Vincent, Adam G; Johnston, Douglas S; Middleton, Blackford

    2010-04-01

    We compare health information technology (IT) in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to norms in the private sector, and we estimate the costs and benefits of selected VA health IT systems. The VA spent proportionately more on IT than the private health care sector spent, but it achieved higher levels of IT adoption and quality of care. The potential value of the VA's health IT investments is estimated at $3.09 billion in cumulative benefits net of investment costs. This study serves as a framework to inform efforts to measure and calculate the benefits of federal health IT stimulus programs.

  7. A study of ambulatory care education in medical schools and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs health care facilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, A S; Lussier, R R; Koser, K

    1989-10-01

    A study of ambulatory care and education was conducted by sending questionnaires to U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals (75) and medical schools (65) prior to the Conference on Ambulatory Care and Education. Responses from 48% of medical schools indicated that there was little required clinical time in ambulatory care (15-20%), as well as faculty resistance and lack of medical school commitment to ambulatory care education. VA respondents (35% sample) also documented relatively little training in ambulatory care at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Numerous barriers to ambulatory care education are mentioned and strategies for overcoming the problems found are discussed.

  8. 38 CFR 12.21 - Action upon death of veteran.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... veteran at a Department of Veterans Affairs hospital, center or domiciliary activity while receiving care... of the Department of Veterans Affairs hospital, center, or domiciliary activity having jurisdiction...

  9. BP and Renal Outcomes in Diabetic Kidney Disease: The Veterans Affairs Nephropathy in Diabetes Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leehey, David J; Zhang, Jane H; Emanuele, Nicholas V; Whaley-Connell, Adam; Palevsky, Paul M; Reilly, Robert F; Guarino, Peter; Fried, Linda F

    2015-12-07

    Proteinuric diabetic kidney disease frequently progresses to ESRD. Control of BP delays progression, but the optimal BP to improve outcomes remains unclear. The objective of this analysis was to evaluate the relationship between BP and renal outcomes in proteinuric diabetic kidney disease. BP data from all 1448 randomized participants in the Veterans Affairs Nephropathy in Diabetes Trial were included in a post hoc analysis. The associations of mean on-treatment BP with the primary end point (decline in eGFR, ESRD, or death), renal end point (decline in eGFR or ESRD), rate of eGFR decline, and mortality were measured. The median (25th, 75th percentile) follow-up time was 2.2 (1.2, 3.0) years. There were 284 primary end points. In univariate analyses, both mean systolic and mean diastolic BPs were strongly associated (P150 mmHg (P=0.02), with a significantly higher hazard ratio for 140-149 versus 120-129 mmHg (1.51 [1.06, 2.15]; P=0.02). There was also a significant association of mean diastolic BP with the hazard of developing the primary end point (P<0.01), with a significantly higher hazard ratio when mean diastolic BP was 80-89 versus 70-79 mmHg (1.54 [1.05, 2.25]; P=0.03); there was also a strong trend when mean diastolic BP was <60 mmHg. Associations between BP and both renal end point and rate of eGFR decline were similar to those with the primary end point. No association of BP with mortality was observed, possibly because of the limited number of mortality events. In patients with proteinuric diabetic kidney disease, mean systolic BP ≥ 140 mmHg and mean diastolic BP ≥ 80 mmHg were associated with worse renal outcomes. Copyright © 2015 by the American Society of Nephrology.

  10. Hearing aid patients in private practice and public health (Veterans Affairs) clinics: are they different?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Robyn M; Alexander, Genevieve C; Gray, Ginger A

    2005-12-01

    In hearing aid research, it is commonplace to combine data across subjects whose hearing aids were provided in different service delivery models. There is reason to question whether these types of patients are always similar enough to justify this practice. To explore this matter, this investigation evaluated similarities and differences in self-report data obtained from hearing aid patients derived from public health (Veterans Affairs, VA) and private practice (PP) settings. The study was a multisite, cross-sectional survey in which 230 hearing aid patients from VA and PP audiology clinic settings provided self-report data on a collection of questionnaires both before and after the hearing aid fitting. Subjects were all older adults with mild to moderately severe hearing loss. About half of them had previous experience wearing hearing aids. All subjects were fitted with wide-dynamic-range-compression instruments and received similar treatment protocols. Numerous statistically significant differences were observed between the VA and PP subject groups. Before the fitting, VA patients reported higher expectations from the hearing aids and more severe unaided problems compared with PP patients with similar audiograms. Three wks after the fitting, VA patients reported more satisfaction with their hearing aids. On some measures VA patients reported more benefit, but different measures of benefit did not give completely consistent results. Both groups reported using the hearing aids an average of approximately 8 hrs per day. VA patients reported age-normal physical and mental health, but PP patients tended to report better than typical health for their age group. These data indicate that hearing aid patients seen in the VA public health hearing services are systematically different in self-report domains from those seen in private practice services. It is therefore risky to casually combine data from these two types of subjects or to generalize research results from one

  11. Predictors of Cognitive Decline in Older Adult Type 2 Diabetes from the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimering, Mark B; Knight, Jeffrey; Ge, Ling; Bahn, Gideon

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive decline disproportionately affects older adult type 2 diabetes. We tested whether randomized intensive (INT) glucose-lowering reduces the rate(s) of cognitive decline in adults with advanced type 2 diabetes (mean: age, 60 years; diabetes duration, 11 years) from the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial. A battery of neuropsychological tests [digit span, digit symbol substitution (DSym), and Trails-making Test-Part B (TMT-B)] was administered at baseline in ~1700 participants and repeated at year 5. Thirty-seven risk factors were evaluated as predictors of cognitive decline in multivariable regression analyses. The mean age-adjusted DSym or TMT-B declined significantly in all study participants (P < 0.001). Randomized INT glucose-lowering did not significantly alter the rate of cognitive decline. The final model of risk factors associated with 5-year decline in age-adjusted TMT-B included as significant predictors: longer baseline diabetes duration (beta = -0.028; P = 0.0057), lower baseline diastolic blood pressure (BP; beta = 0.028; P = 0.002), and baseline calcium channel blocker medication use (beta = -0.639; P < 0.001). Higher baseline pulse pressure was significantly associated with decline in age-adjusted TMT-B suggesting a role for both higher systolic and lower diastolic BPs. Baseline thiazide diuretic use (beta = -0.549; P = 0.015) was an additional significant predictor of 5-year decline in age-adjusted digit symbol score. Post-baseline systolic BP-lowering was significantly associated (P < 0.001) with decline in TMT-B performance. There was a significant inverse association between post-baseline plasma triglyceride-lowering (P = 0.045) and decline in digit symbol substitution task performance. A 5-year period of randomized INT glucose-lowering did not significantly reduce the rate of cognitive decline in older-aged adults with type 2 diabetes. Systolic and diastolic BPs as well as plasma triglycerides

  12. Predictors of cognitive decline in older adult type 2 diabetes from the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Zimering

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Aims: Cognitive decline disproportionately affects older adult type 2 diabetes. We tested whether randomized intensive glucose-lowering reduces the rate(s of cognitive decline in adults with advanced type 2 diabetes (mean: age, 60 years; diabetes duration, 11 years from the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial. Methods: A battery of neuropsychological tests (digit span, digit symbol substitution (DSym, and Trails-making Part B (TMT-B was administered at baseline in ~1700 participants and repeated at year 5. Thirty-six risk factors were evaluated as predictors of cognitive decline in multivariable regression analyses.Results: The mean age-adjusted, DSym or TMT-B declined significantly in all study participants (P < 0.001. Randomized intensive glucose-lowering did not significantly alter the rate of cognitive decline. The final model of risk factors associated with 5-year decline in age-adjusted TMT-B included as significant predictors: longer baseline diabetes duration (beta = -0.028; P = 0.0057, lower baseline diastolic blood pressure (beta = 0.028; P < 0.001, and baseline calcium channel blocker medication use (beta = -0.639; P < 0.001. Higher baseline pulse pressure was significantly associated with decline in age-adjusted TMT-B suggesting a role for both higher systolic and lower diastolic blood pressure. Baseline thiazide diuretic use (beta= -0.549; P =0.015 was an additional significant predictor of 5-year decline in age-adjusted digit symbol score. Post-baseline systolic blood pressure-lowering was significantly associated (P < 0.001 with decline in TMT-B performance. There was a significant inverse association between post-baseline plasma triglyceride- lowering (P = 0.045 and decline in digit symbol substitution task performance.Conclusions: A five-year period of randomized intensive glucose-lowering did not significantly reduce the rate of cognitive decline in older-aged adults with type 2 diabetes. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure as

  13. VA-INPC: Linking Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Indiana Network for Patient Care (INPC) data to assess surveillance testing among veterans with colorectal cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haggstrom, David A; Rosenman, Marc; Myers, Laura J; Teal, Evgenia; Doebbeling, Bradley N

    2010-11-13

    The goal of this project was to provide empiric evidence about the benefit to US veterans and the VA of capturing data from a citywide clinical informatics network (INPC) to assess care received outside the VA. We identified 468 veterans diagnosed with colorectal cancer from 2000-2007 in the Indianapolis VA cancer registry. Electronic VA healthcare data were linked with electronic health records from the regional health information organization (RHIO) INPC; 341 matches were found. Both the VA and INPC systems were queried regarding receipt of surveillance tests. The proportion with additional data from INPC varied by test: colonoscopy (3%), CT scan/abdomen (13%), CT scan/chest (79%), carcinoembryonic antigen test (8%), and other laboratory tests (25%-53%). An incremental benefit of linking VA and INPC data was present and may increase when expanded beyond patients with a single condition. New, important information about care outside the VA is obtained through RHIO data linkage.

  14. Plastic surgery within the Veterans Affairs Medical System: proposed modified indications for operative procedures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erdmann, Detlev; Pradka, Sarah P; Similie, Ernest; Marcus, Jeffrey R; Moyer, Kurtis E; Shelburne, John D; Tyler, Douglas S; Levin, Scott L

    2009-07-01

    Many plastic surgery procedures span the divide between aesthetic ("cosmetic") and reconstructive surgery. However, definitions and guidelines may be inconsistent, which may decrease patients' access to legitimate procedures. The article aims to assist Veterans' Health Administration-affiliated plastic surgeons in continuing to provide optimal care to the Nation's Veterans and family members, and should be regarded as an open discussion.

  15. Effect of Lean Processes on Surgical Wait Times and Efficiency in a Tertiary Care Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valsangkar, Nakul P; Eppstein, Andrew C; Lawson, Rick A; Taylor, Amber N

    2017-01-01

    There are an increasing number of veterans in the United States, and the current delay and wait times prevent Veterans Affairs institutions from fully meeting the needs of current and former service members. Concrete strategies to improve throughput at these facilities have been sparse. To identify whether lean processes can be used to improve wait times for surgical procedures in Veterans Affairs hospitals. Databases in the Veterans Integrated Service Network 11 Data Warehouse, Veterans Health Administration Support Service Center, and Veterans Information Systems and Technology Architecture/Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol were queried to assess changes in wait times for elective general surgical procedures and clinical volume before, during, and after implementation of lean processes over 3 fiscal years (FYs) at a tertiary care Veterans Affairs medical center. All patients evaluated by the general surgery department through outpatient clinics, clinical video teleconferencing, and e-consultations from October 2011 through September 2014 were included. Patients evaluated through the emergency department or as inpatient consults were excluded. The surgery service and systems redesign service held a value stream analysis in FY 2013, culminating in multiple rapid process improvement workshops. Multidisciplinary teams identified systemic inefficiencies and strategies to improve interdepartmental and patient communication to reduce canceled consultations and cases, diagnostic rework, and no-shows. High-priority triage with enhanced operating room flexibility was instituted to reduce scheduling wait times. General surgery department pilot projects were then implemented mid-FY 2013. Planned outcome measures included wait time, clinic and telehealth volume, number of no-shows, and operative volume. Paired t tests were used to identify differences in outcome measures after the institution of reforms. Following rapid process improvement workshop project rollouts, mean

  16. Achieving excellence in veterans healthcare--a balanced scorecard approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biro, Lawrence A; Moreland, Michael E; Cowgill, David E

    2003-01-01

    This article provides healthcare administrators and managers with a framework and model for developing a balanced scorecard and demonstrates the remarkable success of this process, which brings focus to leadership decisions about the allocation of resources. This scorecard was developed as a top management tool designed to structure multiple priorities of a large, complex, integrated healthcare system and to establish benchmarks to measure success in achieving targets for performance in identified areas. Significant benefits and positive results were derived from the implementation of the balanced scorecard, based upon benchmarks considered to be critical success factors. The network's chief executive officer and top leadership team set and articulated the network's primary operating principles: quality and efficiency in the provision of comprehensive healthcare and support services. Under the weighted benchmarks of the balanced scorecard, the facilities in the network were mandated to adhere to one non-negotiable tenet: providing care that is second to none. The balanced scorecard approach to leadership continuously ensures that this is the primary goal and focal point for all activity within the network. To that end, systems are always in place to ensure that the network is fully successful on all performance measures relating to quality.

  17. 76 FR 61151 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-03

    ... INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans... homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness and their families; and provide a supportive...

  18. Mental Illness and Mental Healthcare Receipt among Hospitalized Veterans with Serious Physical Illnesses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrido, Melissa M; Prigerson, Holly G; Neupane, Suvam; Penrod, Joan D; Johnson, Christopher E; Boockvar, Kenneth S

    2017-03-01

    Psychosocial distress among patients with limited life expectancy influences treatment decisions, treatment adherence, and physical health. Veterans may be at elevated risk of psychosocial distress at the end of life, and understanding their mental healthcare needs may help identify hospitalized patients to whom psychiatric services should be targeted. To examine mental illness prevalence and mental health treatment rates among a national sample of hospitalized veterans with serious physical illnesses. Design, Subjects, and Measurements: This was a retrospective study of 11,286 veterans hospitalized in a Veterans Health Administration acute care facility in fiscal year 2011 with diagnoses of advanced cancer, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and/or advanced HIV/AIDS. Prevalent and incident mental illness diagnoses during and before hospitalization and rates of psychotherapy and psychotropic use among patients with incident depression and anxiety were measured. At least one-quarter of the patients in our sample had a mental illness or substance use disorder. The most common diagnoses at hospitalization were depression (11.4%), followed by alcohol abuse or dependence (5.5%), and post-traumatic stress disorder (4.9%). Of the 831 patients with incident past-year depression and 258 with incident past-year anxiety, nearly two-thirds received at least some psychotherapy or guideline-concordant medication within 90 days of diagnosis. Of 191 patients with incident depression and 47 with incident anxiety at time of hospitalization, fewer than half received mental healthcare before discharge. Many veterans hospitalized with serious physical illnesses have comorbid mental illnesses and may benefit from depression and anxiety treatment.

  19. National Dissemination of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Depression in the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System: Therapist and Patient-Level Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karlin, Bradley E.; Brown, Gregory K.; Trockel, Mickey; Cunning, Darby; Zeiss, Antonette M.; Taylor, C. Barr

    2012-01-01

    Objective: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system is nationally disseminating and implementing cognitive behavioral therapy for depression (CBT-D). The current article evaluates therapist and patient-level outcomes associated with national training in and implementation of CBT-D in the VA health care system. Method: Therapist…

  20. Assessing health status differences between Veterans Affairs home-based primary care and state Medicaid Waiver Program clients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wharton, Tracy C; Nnodim, Joseph; Hogikyan, Robert; Mody, Lona; James, Mary; Montagnini, Marcos; Fries, Brant E

    2013-04-01

    Comprehensive health care for older adults is complex, involving multiple comorbidities and functional impairments of varying degrees and numbers. In response to this complexity and associated barriers to care, home-based care models have become prevalent. The home-based primary care (HBPC) model, based at a Michigan Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and the Michigan Waiver Program (MWP) that includes home-based care are 2 of these. Although both models are formatted to address barriers to effective and efficient health care, there are differences in disease prevalence and functional performance between groups. The objective of this study was to explore the differences between the 2 groups, to shed some light on potential trends that could suggest areas for resource allocation by service providers. Using a retrospective analysis of data collected using the interRAI-home care, we examined a cross-sectional representation of clients enrolled in HBPC and MWP in 2008. The HBPC sample had 89 participants. The MWP database contained 9324 participants from across the State of Michigan and were weighted to be comparable to the HBPC population in sex and age, and to simulate the HBPC sample size. Veterans were more independent in basic activities of daily living performance, but there was no difference in the rate of reported falls between the 2 groups. Veterans had more pain and a higher prevalence of coronary artery disease (z = 7.0; P Affairs Medical Center were more burdened by chronic disease and had higher degrees of loneliness than their MWP counterparts- factors, which may increase their likelihood of hospitalizations. MWP participants had more cases of cerebrovascular accident (z = 2.1; P = .039), as well as a higher rate of diagnosed dementias (z = 2.7; P = .006). Though not different, stress among caregivers in both groups, and depression in clients of both groups were substantial. Overall, sleep, pain, coronary artery disease, chronic obstructive

  1. Ethnic differences in blood pressure control among men at Veterans Affairs clinics and other health care sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehman, Shakaib U; Hutchison, Florence N; Hendrix, Katharine; Okonofua, Eni C; Egan, Brent M

    2005-05-09

    Differential access to health care may contribute to lower blood pressure (BP) control rates to under 140/90 mm Hg in African American compared with white hypertensive patients, especially men (26.5% vs 36.5% of all hypertensive patients in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 1999-2000). The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system, which provides access to health care and medications across ethnic and economic boundaries, may reduce disparities in BP control. To test this hypothesis, BP treatment and control groups were compared between African American (VA, n = 4379; non-VA, n = 2754) and white (VA, n = 7987; non-VA, n = 4980) hypertensive men. In both groups, whites were older than African Americans (Pcardiovascular risk.

  2. Development and Validation of a Methodology to Reduce Mortality Using the Veterans Affairs Surgical Quality Improvement Program Risk Calculator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Deborah S; Kroll, Donald; Papaconstantinou, Harry T; Ellis, C Neal

    2017-04-01

    To identify patients with a high risk of 30-day mortality after elective surgery, who may benefit from referral for tertiary care, an institution-specific process using the Veterans Affairs Surgical Quality Improvement Program (VASQIP) Risk Calculator was developed. The goal was to develop and validate the methodology. Our hypothesis was that the process could optimize referrals and reduce mortality. A VASQIP risk score was calculated for all patients undergoing elective noncardiac surgery at a single Veterans Affairs (VA) facility. After statistical analysis, a VASQIP risk score of 3.3% predicted mortality was selected as the institutional threshold for referral to a tertiary care center. The model predicted that 16% of patients would require referral, and 30-day mortality would be reduced by 73% at the referring institution. The main outcomes measures were the actual vs predicted referrals and mortality rates at the referring and receiving facilities. The validation included 565 patients; 90 (16%) had VASQIP risk scores greater than 3.3% and were identified for referral; 60 consented. In these patients, there were 16 (27%) predicted mortalities, but only 4 actual deaths (p = 0.007) at the receiving institution. When referral was not indicated, the model predicted 4 mortalities (1%), but no actual deaths (p = 0.1241). These data validate this methodology to identify patients for referral to a higher level of care, reducing mortality at the referring institutions and significantly improving patient outcomes. This methodology can help guide decisions on referrals and optimize patient care. Further application and studies are warranted. Copyright © 2017 American College of Surgeons. All rights reserved.

  3. 38 CFR 3.159 - Department of Veterans Affairs assistance in developing claims.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... such as medical and scientific articles and research reports or analyses. (2) Competent lay evidence... and military unit of a person who served with the veteran; or the name and address of a medical care... local governments, private medical care providers, current or former employers, and other non-Federal...

  4. A comparison of HAART outcomes between the US military HIV Natural History Study (NHS and HIV Atlanta Veterans Affairs Cohort Study (HAVACS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jodie L Guest

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: The Department of Defense (DoD and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA provide comprehensive HIV treatment and care to their beneficiaries with open access and few costs to the patient. Individuals who receive HIV care in the VA have higher rates of substance abuse, homelessness and unemployment than individuals who receive HIV care in the DoD. A comparison between individuals receiving HIV treatment and care from the DoD and the VA provides an opportunity to explore the impact of individual-level characteristics on clinical outcomes within two healthcare systems that are optimized for clinic retention and medication adherence. METHODS: Data were collected on 1065 patients from the HIV Atlanta VA Cohort Study (HAVACS and 1199 patients from the US Military HIV Natural History Study (NHS. Patients were eligible if they had an HIV diagnosis and began HAART between January 1, 1996 and June 30, 2010. The analysis examined the survival from HAART initiation to all-cause mortality or an AIDS event. RESULTS: Although there was substantial between-cohort heterogeneity and the 12-year survival of participants in NHS was significantly higher than in HAVACS in crude analyses, this survival disparity was reduced from 21.5% to 1.6% (mortality only and 26.8% to 4.1% (combined mortality or AIDS when controlling for clinical and demographic variables. CONCLUSION: We assessed the clinical outcomes for individuals with HIV from two very similar government-sponsored healthcare systems that reduced or eliminated many barriers associated with accessing treatment and care. After controlling for clinical and demographic variables, both 12-year survival and AIDS-free survival rates were similar for the two study cohorts who have open access to care and medication despite dramatic differences in socioeconomic and behavioral characteristics.

  5. Veterans Crisis Line

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The caring responders at the Veterans Crisis Line are specially trained and experienced in helping Veterans of all ages and circumstances. Some of the responders are...

  6. Treatment of dupuytren disease with injectable collagenase in a veteran population: a case series at the department of veterans affairs new jersey health care system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sood, Aditya; Therattil, Paul J; Paik, Angie M; Simpson, Mary F; Lee, Edward S

    2014-01-01

    Clinical trials seeking to establish long-term efficacy of injectable collagenase clostridium histolyticum for treatment of Dupuytren disease are ongoing. In this quality improvement study, the efficacy, recurrence rate, and complications of collagenase injection for Dupuytren disease are reviewed in a population of Veteran patients. A retrospective chart review was performed for patients who underwent treatment with injectable collagenase for Dupuytren disease from 2010 to 2013 at our regional Department of Veterans Affairs medical center. Data points of interest included the degree of joint contracture preoperatively, immediately after treatment, and at follow-up, complications, and patient satisfaction. Sixteen patients received 27 injections (18 metacarpophalangeal and 9 proximal interphalangeal injections). The mean time of follow-up was 12.3 months. There was a 50% or greater reduction of the original extension deficit in 74.1% (n = 27) of the joints treated. Metacarpophalangeal joint recurrence was "high" (≥50°) in 0% (n = 18) of joints, and "low" (5°-50°) in 33.3% (n = 18) of joints with a mean follow-up of 12 months. Proximal interphalangeal joint recurrence was "high" (≥40°) in 18.5% (n = 9) of joints and "low" (5°-40°) in 7.4% (n = 9) of joints with a mean follow-up of 12.9 months. Minor complications were experienced in 93.8% (n = 16) of patients who underwent collagenase injection and included ecchymosis, skin laceration, injection-site swelling, injection-site hemorrhage, tenderness, and pruritus. Seventy-five percent (n = 12) of patients in our study reported they would undergo treatment with collagenase again. The case series presented demonstrates that injectable collagenase clostridium histolyticum produced a clinical success rate of 74.1% and is a safe method to treat Dupuytren disease.

  7. Preliminary needs assessment of mobile technology use for healthcare among homeless veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McInnes, D Keith; Fix, Gemmae M; Solomon, Jeffrey L; Petrakis, Beth Ann; Sawh, Leon; Smelson, David A

    2015-01-01

    Background. Homeless veterans have complex healthcare needs, but experience many barriers to treatment engagement. While information technologies (IT), especially mobile phones, are used to engage patients in care, little is known about homeless veterans' IT use. This study examines homeless veterans' access to and use of IT, attitudes toward health-related IT use, and barriers to IT in the context of homelessness. Methods. Qualitative interviews were conducted with 30 homeless veterans in different housing programs in Boston, MA, ranging from emergency shelters to supportive transitional housing that allow stays of up to 2 years. Interviews were conducted in person, audio recorded and then transcribed. Three researchers coded transcripts. Inductive thematic analysis was used. Results. Most participants (90%) had a mobile phone and were receptive to IT use for health-related communications. A common difficulty communicating with providers was the lack of a stable mailing address. Some participants were using mobile phones to stay in touch with providers. Participants felt mobile-phone calls or text messages could be used to remind patients of appointments, prescription refills, medication taking, and returning for laboratory results. Mobile phone text messaging was seen as convenient, and helped participants stay organized because necessary information was saved in text messages. Some reported concerns about the costs associated with mobile phone use (calls and texting), the potential to be annoyed by too many text messages, and not knowing how to use text messaging. Conclusion. Homeless veterans use IT and welcome its use for health-related purposes. Technology-assisted outreach among this population may lead to improved engagement in care.

  8. Long-term follow-up of intensive glycaemic control on renal outcomes in the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agrawal, Lily; Azad, Nasrin; Bahn, Gideon D; Ge, Ling; Reaven, Peter D; Hayward, Rodney A; Reda, Domenic J; Emanuele, Nicholas V

    2017-11-03

    We conducted an analysis of data collected during the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT) and the follow-up study (VADT-F) to determine whether intensive (INT) compared with standard (STD) glycaemic control during the VADT resulted in better long-term kidney outcomes. VADT randomly assigned 1791 veterans from 20 Veterans Affairs (VA) medical centres who had type 2 diabetes mellitus and a mean HbA1c of 9.4 ± 2% (79.2 mmol/mol) at baseline to receive either INT or STD glucose control for a median of 5.6 years (randomisation December 2000 to May 2003; intervention ending in May 2008). After the trial, participants received routine care through their own physicians within the VA. This is an interim analysis of the VADT-F (June 2008 to December 2013). We collected data using VA and National databases and report renal outcomes based on serum creatinine, eGFR and urine albumin to creatinine ratio (ACR) in 1033 people who provided informed consent to participate in the VADT-F. By the end of the VADT-F, significantly more people who received INT treatment during the VADT maintained an eGFR >60 ml min(-1) 1.73 m(-2) (OR 1.34 [95% CI 1.05, 1.71], p = 0.02). This benefit was most evident in those who were classified as at moderate risk (INT vs STD, RR 1.3, p = 0.03) or high risk (RR 2.3, p = 0.04) of chronic kidney disease on the Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO-CKD) at the beginning of VADT. At the end of VADT-F, significantly more people from the INT group improved to a low KDIGO risk category (RR 6.1, p = 0.002). During the VADT-F there were no significant differences between INT and STD for average HbA1c, blood pressure or lipid levels. After just over 11 years of follow-up, there was a 34% greater odds of maintaining an eGFR of >60 ml min(-1) 1.73 m(-2) and of improving the KDIGO category in individuals with type 2 diabetes who had received INT for a median of 5.6 years. VADT clinical trials.gov number: NCT 00032487.

  9. Spousal labor market effects from government health insurance: Evidence from a veterans affairs expansion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyle, Melissa A; Lahey, Joanna N

    2016-01-01

    Measuring the total impact of health insurance receipt on household labor supply is important in an era of increased access to publicly provided and subsidized insurance. Although government expansion of health insurance to older workers leads to direct labor supply reductions for recipients, there may be spillover effects on the labor supply of uncovered spouses. While the most basic model predicts a decrease in overall household work hours, financial incentives such as credit constraints, target income levels, and the need for own health insurance suggest that spousal labor supply might increase. In contrast, complementarities of spousal leisure would predict a decrease in labor supply for both spouses. Utilizing a mid-1990s expansion of health insurance for U.S. veterans, we provide evidence on the effects of public insurance availability on the labor supply of spouses. Using data from the Current Population Survey and Health and Retirement Study, we employ a difference-in-differences strategy to compare the labor market behavior of the wives of older male veterans and non-veterans before and after the VA health benefits expansion. Although husbands' labor supply decreases, wives' labor supply increases, suggesting that financial incentives dominate complementarities of spousal leisure. This effect is strongest for wives with lower education levels and lower levels of household wealth and those who were not previously employed full-time. These findings have implications for government programs such as Medicare and Social Security and the Affordable Care Act. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Push-Pull Tensions: A Grounded Theory on Social Experience of Use of Healthcare Services Among Homeless Veterans

    OpenAIRE

    Samiley, Romanitchiko

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to develop, from the perspective of the user, a better understanding of the factors that influence use of healthcare services by homeless veterans in the U.S. The study employed the Grounded Theory (GT) methodology and was guided by Critical Social Theory (CST) and Symbolic Interactionism (SI) as the philosophical underpinnings. There is a scant but growing number of studies on the social experience of homeless veterans in accessing care at the Department of Vete...

  11. 76 FR 61150 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property at the VA...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-03

    ... INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044C), Department of Veterans... priority placement for homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness; and provide a supportive...

  12. Relationship satisfaction, PTSD symptom severity, and mental healthcare utilization among OEF/OIF veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGinn, Meghan M; Hoerster, Katherine D; Stryczek, Krysttel C; Malte, Carol A; Jakupcak, Matthew

    2017-02-01

    Despite the availability of evidence-based PTSD treatments at most facilities within the VA Healthcare System, most Iraq and Afghanistan veterans returning from deployments with posttraumatic stress symptoms do not receive an adequate dose of mental health treatment, prompting the need to identify potential barriers to or facilitators of mental health care utilization. Previous research demonstrated self-reported mental health care utilization in the prior year varies as a function of PTSD symptom severity, and the interaction of PTSD symptom severity and romantic relationship satisfaction (Meis et al., 2010). We extended these findings by objectively measuring the degree of utilization over a 1-year period (i.e., number of sessions attended) in a sample of 130 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who presented to primary care/deployment health and completed an initial mental health evaluation. Results indicated main and interactive effects of PTSD symptom severity and relationship satisfaction, such that greater PTSD symptom severity was associated with greater utilization at average to high relationship satisfaction (p relationship satisfaction. Implications for future research and couple/family based interventions for veterans with PTSD are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  13. 38 CFR 3.360 - Service-connected health-care eligibility of certain persons administratively discharged under...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Service-connected health-care eligibility of certain persons administratively discharged under other than honorable condition. 3.360 Section 3.360 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS ADJUDICATION Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and...

  14. 76 FR 5432 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property at the Charlie...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-31

    ...-sufficiency. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044...; provide preference and priority placement for homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness; and...

  15. 76 FR 60965 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-30

    ...-sufficiency. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044... priority placement for homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness and their families; and...

  16. Hearing testing in the U.S. Department of Defense: Potential impact on Veterans Affairs hearing loss disability awards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, J T; Swan, A A; Swiger, B; Packer, M; Pugh, M J

    2017-06-01

    Hearing loss is the second most common disability awarded by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to former members of the U.S. uniformed services. Hearing readiness and conservation practices differ among the four largest uniformed military services (Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, and Navy). Utilizing a data set consisting of all hearing loss claims submitted to the VA from fiscal years 2003-2013, we examined characteristics of veterans submitting claims within one year of separation from military service. Our results indicate that having a hearing loss disability claim granted was significantly more likely for men, individuals over the age of 26 years at the time of the claim, individuals most recently serving in the U.S. Army, and those with at least one hearing loss diagnosis. Importantly, individuals with at least one test record in the Defense Occupational and Environmental Health Readiness System-Hearing Conservation (DOEHRS-HC) system were significantly less likely to have a hearing loss disability claim granted by the VA. Within the DOEHRS-HC cohort, those with at least one threshold shift or clinical hearing loss diagnosis while on active duty were more than two and three times more likely to have a hearing loss disability claim granted, respectively. These findings indicate that an established history of reduced hearing ability while on active duty was associated with a significantly increased likelihood of an approved hearing loss disability claim relative to VA claims without such a history. Further, our results show a persistent decreased rate of hearing loss disability awards overall. These findings support increased inclusion of personnel in DoD hearing readiness and conservation programs to reduce VA hearing loss disability awards. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. 2001 National Survey of Veterans (NSV)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The 2001 National Survey of Veterans (NSV) is the fifth in a series of comprehensivenationwide surveys designed to help the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) plan...

  18. Healthcare utilization among veterans undergoing chemotherapy: the impact of a cancer care coordination/home-telehealth program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chumbler, Neale R; Kobb, Rita; Harris, Linda; Richardson, Lisa C; Darkins, Adam; Sberna, Melanie; Dixit, Neha; Ryan, Patricia; Donaldson, Molla; Kreps, Gary L

    2007-01-01

    The 2001 Institute of Medicine report indicted that the US healthcare system fails to provide high-quality care, and offered 6 aims of improvement that would redesign the delivery of care for the 21st century. This study compared the use of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) inpatient and outpatient services of cancer patients enrolled in a Cancer Care Coordination/Home-Telehealth (CCHT) program that involved remote management of symptoms (eg, emotional distress, pain) via home-telehealth technologies to a control group of cancer patients receiving standard VA care. Using a matched case-control design, 2 control patients per case were selected, matched by tumor type and cancer stage. There were 43 Cancer CCHT patients and 82 control group patients. Based on a medical record review of each patient, the total number of cancer-related services (defined as visits that were expected given the patients' cancer diagnosis and treatment protocol) and preventable services (defined as visits needed outside of those expected given the cancer diagnosis and planned treatment) were calculated over a 6-month period. Poisson multivariate regression models were used to estimate the adjusted relative risks (RRs) for the effects of the Cancer CCHT program on the service use outcomes. Cancer CCHT patients had significantly fewer preventable services (clinic visits: RR = 0.03, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.00-0.24; bed days of care (BDOC) for hospitalization [all-cause]: RR = 0.50, 95% CI = 0.37-0.67; hospitalizations [chemotherapy related]: RR = 0.43, 95% CI = 0.21-0.91; and BDOC for hospitalizations [chemotherapy related]: RR = 0.49, 95% CI = 0.34-0.71) than the control group. This study offered some preliminary evidence that patients enrolled in a Cancer CCHT program can successfully manage multiple complex symptoms without utilizing inpatient and outpatient services.

  19. Homeless and Unemployed Veterans. Hearing before the Subcommittee on Education, Training and Employment of the Committee on Veterans' Affairs. House of Representatives, Ninety-Ninth Congress, Second Session.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. House Committee on Veterans' Affairs.

    This congressional report contains the testimony that was presented at a hearing to examine the needs of homeless and unemployed veterans. Testimony was provided by representatives of the following agencies and organizations: the Vietnam Veterans Ensemble; the National Coalition for the Homeless; the various Veterans' Administration (VA)…

  20. Training satisfaction for subspecialty fellows in internal medicine: Findings from the Veterans Affairs (VA Learners' Perceptions Survey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byrne John M

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Learner satisfaction assessment is critical in the design and improvement of training programs. However, little is known about what influences satisfaction and whether trainee specialty is correlated. A national comparison of satisfaction among internal medicine subspecialty fellows in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA provides a unique opportunity to examine educational factors associated with learner satisfaction. We compared satisfaction across internal medicine fellows by subspecialty and compared factors associated with satisfaction between procedural versus non-procedural subspecialty fellows, using data from the Learners' Perceptions Survey (LPS, a validated survey tool. Methods We surveyed 2,221 internal medicine subspecialty fellows rotating through VA between 2001 and 2008. Learners rated their overall training satisfaction on a 100-point scale, and on a five-point Likert scale ranked satisfaction with items within six educational domains: learning, clinical, working and physical environments; personal experience; and clinical faculty/preceptor. Results Procedural and non-procedural fellows reported similar overall satisfaction scores (81.2 and 81.6. Non-procedural fellows reported higher satisfaction with 79 of 81 items within the 6 domains and with the domain of physical environment (4.06 vs. 3.85, p Conclusions Internal medicine fellows are highly satisfied with their VA training. Nonprocedural fellows reported higher satisfaction with most items. For both procedural and non-procedural fellows, clinical faculty/preceptor and personal experience have the strongest impact on overall satisfaction.

  1. Validity of code based algorithms to identify primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) in Veterans Affairs (VA) administrative databases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biggerstaff, K S; Frankfort, B J; Orengo-Nania, S; Garcia, J; Chiao, E; Kramer, J R; White, D

    2017-09-25

    The validity of the International Classification of Diseases, 9th revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9) code for primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) electronic medical record has not been examined. We determined the accuracy of the ICD-9 code for POAG and developed diagnostic algorithms for the detection of POAG. We conducted a retrospective study of abstracted data from the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center's medical records of 334 unique patients with at least one visit to the Eye Clinic between 1999 and 2013. Algorithms were developed to validly identify POAG using ICD-9 codes and pharmacy data. The positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), sensitivity, specificity and percent agreement of the various algorithms were calculated. For the ICD-9 code 365.1x, the PPV was 65.9%, NPV was 95.2%, sensitivity was 100%, specificity was 82.6%, and percent agreement was 87.8%. The algorithm with the highest PPV was 76.3%, using pharmacy data in conjunction with two or more ICD-9 codes for POAG, but this algorithm also had the lowest NPV at 88.2%. Various algorithms for identifying POAG in the VA administrative databases have variable validity. Depending on the type of research being done, the ICD-9 code 365.1x can be used for epidemiologic or health services database research.

  2. Professional Quality of Life of Veterans Affairs Staff and Providers in a Patient-Centered Care Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Locatelli, Sara M; LaVela, Sherri L

    2015-01-01

    Changes to the work environment prompted by the movement toward patient-centered care have the potential to improve occupational stress among health care workers by improving team-based work activities, collaboration, and employee-driven quality improvement. This study was conducted to examine professional quality of life among providers at patient-centered care pilot facilities. Surveys were conducted with 76 Veterans Affairs employees/providers at facilities piloting patient-centered care interventions, to assess demographics, workplace practices and views (team-based environment, employee voice, quality of communication, and turnover intention), and professional quality of life (compassion satisfaction, burnout, and secondary traumatic stress).Professional quality-of-life subscales were not related to employee position type, age, or gender. Employee voice measures were related to lower burnout and higher compassion satisfaction. In addition, employees who were considering leaving their position showed higher burnout and lower compassion satisfaction scores. None of the work practices showed relationships with secondary traumatic stress.

  3. Role of prolonged surveillance in the eradication of nosocomial scabies in an extended care Veterans Affairs medical center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jimenez-Lucho, V E; Fallon, F; Caputo, C; Ramsey, K

    1995-02-01

    Although general guidelines for control of institutional outbreaks of scabies have been published, little information is available on the long-term efficacy of these measures in extended care facilities. An epidemic of scabies occurred in a comprehensive care Veterans Affairs facility as a result of an unrecognized case of crusted scabies, with a total of 112 persons affected during a 12-month period. The initial outbreak occurred in the acute care units, with highest attack rates among roommates of the index patient (11/14, 78%) and nursing staff (27/55, 49%). Despite sustained infection control measures, secondary outbreaks continued to occur in the extended care units. Factors contributing to the persistence of the epidemic were transfer of patients with unrecognized infestation within the facility, prolonged latency period and atypical manifestations in elderly patients, and failure of scabicide treatment. In addition, a role may be played by carriage of scabies mites by infested staff members before they have symptoms. Control of the epidemic was only achieved with the following: increased awareness and better scabies recognition, restriction of staff rotation in the facility, and improved communication among primary providers and infection control personnel. Prolonged surveillance may be required for eradication of nosocomial scabies in extended care settings.

  4. Ethical issues regarding caring for dermatology patients in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reich, Reuben; Stevens, Emily; Dellavalle, Robert P

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) operates the largest integrated health care system within the United States. VA budgets continue to escalate in an environment of heightened financial prudence and accountability. Despite having received many awards in areas from patient satisfaction and safety to product innovations, like any health care system, the VA is not immune to ethical conflict that requires exploration and evaluation. Several VA dermatologists, including section chiefs, were interviewed, and their responses to ethical complexities encountered or anticipated were analyzed in fictional case scenarios. Five morally concerning issues were highlighted. These include (1) providing care in a teaching setting with limited resources to a patient population with few other health care alternatives; (2) stereotyping patients, altogether an uncommon act, is possibly easier to do in the VA and has the potential to negatively affect patient care; (3) service-related disability claim cases often include medical opinion and findings documented in the medical record when judgments are made, thus the VA physician can have a significant effect on the outcome of these claims; (4) whether the VA provides a setting for apathetic physicians to thrive or instead allows for a more meaningful work experience and then how to manage the subpar performer; (5) except for the treatment of HIV lipodystrophy with injectables, primary cosmetic procedures are prohibited at the VA and can lead to difficulties for the VA dermatologist attempting to comply in a era where dermatology is being more closely associated with cosmesis. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  5. The Role of Veterans Affairs in Support of DOD in Biodefense

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-22

    resulting in bacteremia and likely spreading to other organs like the meninges , causing meningitis . If patient has eaten any contaminated raw meat, anthrax...the devastating effect of anthrax bioterrorist attack requires early diagnosis and treatment of its victims, healthcare providers play a critical role...anthrax is usually less than one percent with timely antibiotic treatment but rises to almost 20 percent without adequate therapy.54 The inhalation

  6. State of affairs of emergency medicine in the Veterans Health Administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kessler, Chad; Chen, Jennifer; Dill, Curt; Tyndall, Gary; Olszyk, Mark D

    2010-10-01

    The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) has reformed its emergency medical services. This study updates an overview of emergency medicine within VHA. This is a cross-sectional survey of VHA medical facilities offering emergency medical care. Sixty-eight percent (95/140) of facilities had emergency departments (EDs) only, 12% (16/140) had both ED and urgent care centers (UCCs), and 16% (23/140) had only UCCs. The mean (SD) ED/UCC census was 13 371 (7664). A mean (SD) of 53% (27%) of facility admissions were admitted through ED/UCCs. The median of all ED/UCC admissions admitted to intensive care unit level care was 11% (interquartile range, 7-16). Of physicians with any board certification, 16% (209/1331) of physicians had emergency medicine board certification. Emergency medical care is now available at most VHA facilities. The specialty of emergency medicine has an important but minority presence within clinical emergency medical care at VHA. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Preliminary needs assessment of mobile technology use for healthcare among homeless veterans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Keith McInnes

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Background. Homeless veterans have complex healthcare needs, but experience many barriers to treatment engagement. While information technologies (IT, especially mobile phones, are used to engage patients in care, little is known about homeless veterans’ IT use. This study examines homeless veterans’ access to and use of IT, attitudes toward health-related IT use, and barriers to IT in the context of homelessness.Methods. Qualitative interviews were conducted with 30 homeless veterans in different housing programs in Boston, MA, ranging from emergency shelters to supportive transitional housing that allow stays of up to 2 years. Interviews were conducted in person, audio recorded and then transcribed. Three researchers coded transcripts. Inductive thematic analysis was used.Results. Most participants (90% had a mobile phone and were receptive to IT use for health-related communications. A common difficulty communicating with providers was the lack of a stable mailing address. Some participants were using mobile phones to stay in touch with providers. Participants felt mobile-phone calls or text messages could be used to remind patients of appointments, prescription refills, medication taking, and returning for laboratory results. Mobile phone text messaging was seen as convenient, and helped participants stay organized because necessary information was saved in text messages. Some reported concerns about the costs associated with mobile phone use (calls and texting, the potential to be annoyed by too many text messages, and not knowing how to use text messaging.Conclusion. Homeless veterans use IT and welcome its use for health-related purposes. Technology-assisted outreach among this population may lead to improved engagement in care.

  8. Declining mortality following acute myocardial infarction in the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Piñeros Sandy

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mortality from acute myocardial infarction (AMI is declining worldwide. We sought to determine if mortality in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA has also been declining. Methods We calculated 30-day mortality rates between 2004 and 2006 using data from the VHA External Peer Review Program (EPRP, which entails detailed abstraction of records of all patients with AMI. To compare trends within VHA with other systems of care, we estimated relative mortality rates between 2000 and 2005 for all males 65 years and older with a primary diagnosis of AMI using administrative data from the VHA Patient Treatment File and the Medicare Provider Analysis and Review (MedPAR files. Results Using EPRP data on 11,609 patients, we observed a statistically significant decline in adjusted 30-day mortality following AMI in VHA from 16.3% in 2004 to 13.9% in 2006, a relative decrease of 15% and a decrease in the odds of dying of 10% per year (p = .011. Similar declines were found for in-hospital and 90-day mortality. Based on administrative data on 27,494 VHA patients age 65 years and older and 789,400 Medicare patients, 30-day mortality following AMI declined from 16.0% during 2000-2001 to 15.7% during 2004-June 2005 in VHA and from 16.7% to 15.5% in private sector hospitals. After adjusting for patient characteristics and hospital effects, the overall relative odds of death were similar for VHA and Medicare (odds ratio 1.02, 95% C.I. 0.96-1.08. Conclusion Mortality following AMI within VHA has declined significantly since 2003 at a rate that parallels that in Medicare-funded hospitals.

  9. 76 FR 71442 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-17

    ... homeless and at-risk Veterans and their families; and provide a supportive services program. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans...

  10. 76 FR 67023 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-28

    ...-sufficiency. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044... placement for homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness and their families; and provide a...

  11. 75 FR 72871 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-26

    ...-sufficiency. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044C...; provide preference and priority placement for homeless Veterans and Veterans at risk of homelessness; and...

  12. The Evolution of Veteran Affairs Healthcare - Is It High Time for Cannabis Treatment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-10-01

    antispasmodic and sedative. Others, like Grimault & Company sold marijuana as a remedy for asthma.30 By 1937, Congress passed the Marihuana Tax Act...accessed September 2015). 22 Ibid. 23 Ibid. 24 Grinspoon, Lester, M.D., Bakalar, James, Marihuana : The Forbidden Medicine, Yale University Press...Dose_Cannabis_Inhaler_in_Patients_With_Chronic_Neuropathic_Pain_A_Phase_1a_Stu dy, August 2014. Grinspoon, Lester, M.D., Bakalar, James, Marihuana : The Forbidden Medicine, Yale

  13. Perioperative use of anti-rheumatic agents does not increase early postoperative infection risks: a Veteran Affairs' administrative database study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abou Zahr, Zaki; Spiegelman, Andrew; Cantu, Maria; Ng, Bernard

    2015-02-01

    The aim of this study was to validate a novel technique that predicts stopping of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and biologic agents (BA) from the Veterans Affairs (VA) database and compare infection risks of rheumatoid arthritis patients who stopped versus continued DMARDs/BA perioperatively. We identified 6,024 patients on 1 DMARD or BA in the perioperative period between 1999 and 2009. Time gap between medication stop date and the next start date predicted drug stoppage (X). Time gap between surgery date and stop date predicted whether stoppage was before surgery (Y). Chart review from Houston VA was used for validation. ROC analyses were performed on chart review data to obtain X and Y cutoffs. The primary endpoints were wound infections and other infections within 30 days. ROC analyses found X ≥ 33 (AUC = 0.954) and Y ≥ -11 (AUC = 0.846). Risk of postoperative infections was not different when stopping and continuing DMARDs/BA preoperatively. Stopping BA after surgery was associated with higher odds of postoperative wound (OR 14.15, 95 % CI 1.76-113.76) and general infection (OR 9.2, 95 % CI 1.99-42.60) compared to not stopping. Stopping DMARDs after surgery was associated with increased risk of postoperative general infection (OR 1.84, 95 % CI 1.07-3.16) compared with not stopping. There was positive association between stopping DMARDs after surgery and postoperative wound infection but failed to achieve statistical significance (OR 1.67, 95 % CI 0.96-2.91). There was no significant difference in postoperative infection risk when stopping or continuing DMARD/BA. Our new validated method can be utilized in the VA and other databases to predict drug stoppage.

  14. Characteristics and use of treatment modalities of patients with binge-eating disorder in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellows, Brandon K; DuVall, Scott L; Kamauu, Aaron W C; Supina, Dylan; Pawaskar, Manjiri; Babcock, Thomas; LaFleur, Joanne

    2016-04-01

    In 2013 binge-eating disorder (BED) was recognized as a formal diagnosis, but was historically included under the diagnosis code for eating disorder not otherwise specified (EDNOS). This study compared the characteristics and use of treatment modalities in BED patients to those with EDNOS without BED (EDNOS-only) and to matched-patients with no eating disorders (NED). Patients were identified for this study from electronic health records in the Department of Veterans Affairs from 2000 to 2011. Patients with BED were identified using natural language processing and patients with EDNOS-only were identified by ICD-9 code (307.50). First diagnosis defined index date for these groups. NED patients were frequency matched to BED patients up to 4:1, as available, on age, sex, BMI, depression, and index month encounter. Baseline characteristics and use of treatment modalities during the post-index year were compared using t-tests or chi-square tests. There were 593 BED, 1354 EDNOS-only, and 1895 matched-NED patients identified. Only 68 patients with BED had an EDNOS diagnosis. BED patients were younger (48.7 vs. 49.8years, p=0.04), more were male (72.2% vs. 62.8%, p<0.001) and obese (BMI 40.2 vs. 37.0, p<0.001) than EDNOS-only patients. In the follow-up period fewer BED (68.0%) than EDNOS-only patients (87.6%, p<0.001), but more BED than NED patients (51.9%, p<0.001) used at least one treatment modality. The characteristics of BED patients were different from those with EDNOS-only and NED as was their use of treatment modalities. These differences highlight the need for a separate identifier of BED. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Who Gets Testosterone? Patient Characteristics Associated with Testosterone Prescribing in the Veteran Affairs System: a Cross-Sectional Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jasuja, Guneet K; Bhasin, Shalender; Reisman, Joel I; Hanlon, Joseph T; Miller, Donald R; Morreale, Anthony P; Pogach, Leonard M; Cunningham, Francesca E; Park, Angela; Berlowitz, Dan R; Rose, Adam J

    2017-03-01

    There has been concern about the growing off-label use of testosterone. Understanding the context within which testosterone is prescribed may contribute to interventions to improve prescribing. To evaluate patient characteristics associated with receipt of testosterone. Cross-sectional. A national cohort of male patients, who had received at least one outpatient prescription within the Veterans Affairs (VA) system during Fiscal Year 2008- Fiscal Year 2012. The study sample consisted of 682,915 non-HIV male patients, of whom 132,764 had received testosterone and a random 10% sample, 550,151, had not. Conditions and medications associated with testosterone prescription. Only 6.3% of men who received testosterone from the VA during the study period had a disorder of the testis, pituitary or hypothalamus associated with male hypogonadism. Among patients without a diagnosed disorder of hypogonadism, the use of opioids and obesity were the strongest predictors of testosterone prescription. Patients receiving >100 mg/equivalents of oral morphine daily (adjusted odds ratio = 5.75, p 40 kg/m2 (adjusted odds ratio = 3.01, p testosterone than non-opioid users and men with BMI testosterone receipt, all with an adjusted odds ratio less than 2 (p testosterone did not have a diagnosed condition of the testes, pituitary, or hypothalamus. The strongest predictors of testosterone receipt (e.g., obesity, receipt of opioids), which though are associated with unapproved, off-label use, may be valid reasons for therapy. Interventions should aim to increase the proportion of testosterone recipients who have a valid indication.

  16. Review of the Report of the Commission To Assess Veterans' Education Policy and the Response of the DVA. Hearing before the Subcommittee on Education, Training and Employment of the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, House of Representatives, One Hundred First Congress, First Session.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. House Committee on Veterans' Affairs.

    This document describes a hearing to review a report of the Commission to Assess Veterans' Education Policy, which was established by Congress in 1986, and the initial response from the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA), which administers education and training programs. Following the opening statements by Congressmen Timothy J. Penny and…

  17. Korean War Veterans by State

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The spreadsheet of Korean War Veterans by State includes the total Korean War Veteran population for each state and broken out by age and gender. It also includes...

  18. AVTA Federal Fleet PEV Readiness Data Logging and Characterization Study for Department of Veterans Affairs. James J. Peters VA Medical Center, Bronx, NY

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schey, Stephen [Intertek Testing Services, North America, Phoenix, AZ (United States); Francfort, Jim [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)

    2014-10-01

    This report focuses on the Department of Veterans Affairs, James J. Peters VA Medical Center (VA - Bronx) fleet to identify daily operational characteristics of select vehicles and report findings on vehicle and mission characterizations to support the successful introduction of PEVs into the agencies’ fleets. Individual observations of these selected vehicles provide the basis for recommendations related to electric vehicle adoption and whether a battery electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (collectively referred to as PEVs) can fulfill the mission requirements.

  19. Veterans and Homelessness

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Perl, Libby

    2007-01-01

    .... The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) estimates that it has served approximately 300 returning veterans in its homeless programs and has identified over 1,000 more as being at risk of homelessness...

  20. Minority Veteran Report

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This report is the first comprehensive report that chronicles the history of racial and ethnic minorities in the military and as Veterans, profiles characteristics...

  1. Minority Veteran Report 2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This report is the first comprehensive report that chronicles the history of racial and ethnic minorities in the military and as Veterans, profiles characteristics...

  2. Master Veteran Index (MVI)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — As of June 28, 2010, the Master Veteran Index (MVI) database based on the enhanced Master Patient Index (MPI) is the authoritative identity service within the VA,...

  3. Transcatheter aortic valve replacement: establishing a comprehensive program model for hybrid cardiac catheterization laboratories in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speiser, Bernadette; Dutra-Brice, Cynthia

    2014-01-01

    Aortic valve disease, especially aortic stenosis, becomes progressively debilitating and carries a high mortality risk if it is categorized as severe and symptomatic (J Thorac Cardiovas Surg. 2012;144(3):e29-e84). In the past, the only treatment for aortic stenosis was surgical aortic valve replacement. Surgical treatment may require several hours of cardioplegia, and if the patient has comorbidities, such as renal failure or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, their operative mortality percentage increases.In 2011, the US Food and Drug Administration approved the use of a transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) procedure for patients who were deemed high risk or inoperative for the routine surgical aortic valve replacement surgery. More than 20, 000 TAVRs have been performed in patients worldwide since 2002 when Dr Alain Cribier performed the first-in-man TAVR (Arch Cardiovasc Dis. 2012;105(3):145-152). The Edwards Lifesciences SAPIEN XT valve and the Medtronic CoreValve are commercially available.The clinical findings and economic statistic have supported the expansion of the TAVR procedure. However, there has been considerable controversy over where the procedure is to occur and who is directly responsible for directing the TAVR care. This debate has identified barriers to the implementation of a TAVR program. The operating rooms and a cardiac catheterization laboratory are underprepared for the hybrid valve replacement therapy. Because of the barriers identified, the Department of Veterans Affairs determined a need for a systematic approach to review the programs that applied for this structural heart disease program. A centralized team was developed to ensure room readiness and staff competency. The use of the Health Failure Mode and Effects Analysis can define high-risk clinical processes and conduct a hazard analysis. Worksheets can show potential failure modes and their probabilities, along with actions and outcome measures, team collaboration

  4. National Cemetery Administration Summary of Veteran and Non-Veteran Interments: FY2000 to FY2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — Total Veteran and Non-Veteran Interments at National Cemetery, and shown by Interment Type of Casket or Cremain, FY2000 to FY2012. Non-Veteran includes dependents,...

  5. 77 FR 18307 - Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses Task Force Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-27

    ... addressing 1990-1991 Gulf War Veterans' illnesses. The GWVI-TF published its first annual report in September... AFFAIRS Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses Task Force Report AGENCY: Department of Veterans Affairs. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The Secretary Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) established the Gulf War Veterans...

  6. Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the Department of Veterans Affairs: a conceptual model for understanding the evacuation of nursing homes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobalian, Aram; Claver, Maria; Fickel, Jacqueline J

    2010-01-01

    Hurricanes Katrina and Rita exposed significant flaws in US preparedness for catastrophic events and the nation's capacity to respond to them. These flaws were especially evident in the affected disaster areas' nursing homes, which house a particularly vulnerable population of frail older adults. Although evacuation of a healthcare facility is a key preparedness activity, there is limited research on factors that lead to effective evacuation. Our review of the literature on evacuation is focused on developing a conceptual framework to study future evacuations rather than as a comprehensive assessment of prior work. This paper summarizes what is known thus far about disaster response activities of nursing homes following natural and human-caused disasters, describes a conceptual model to guide future inquiry regarding this topic, and suggests future areas of research to further understand the decision-making process of nursing home facilitators regarding evacuating nursing home residents. To demonstrate the utility of the conceptual model and to provide guidance about effective practices and procedures, this paper focuses on the responses of Veterans Health Administration (VHA) nursing homes to the 2 hurricanes. Quarantelli's conceptual framework, as modified by Perry and Mushkatel, is useful in guiding the development of central hypotheses related to the decision-making that occurred in VA nursing homes and other healthcare facilities following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. However, we define evacuation somewhat differently to account for the fact that evacuation may, in some instances, be permanent. Thus, we propose modifying this framework to improve its applicability beyond preventive evacuation. We need to better understand how disaster plans can be adapted to meet the needs of frail elders and other residents in nursing homes. Moreover, we must address identified gaps in the scientific literature with respect to health outcomes by tracking outcomes over time

  7. Improved glycemic control in veterans with poorly controlled diabetes mellitus using a Specialty Care Access Network-Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes model at primary care clinics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Sharon A; Roush, Laura; Julius, Mary; Sood, Ajay

    2016-06-01

    An increasing number of patients with diabetes mellitus has created a need for innovative delivery of specialized care not only by diabetes specialists but also by primary care providers (PCPs) as well. A potential avenue to address this need is training of PCPs by specialists via telehealth. The Veteran Affairs (VA) Specialty Care Access Network-Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (SCAN-ECHO) program includes education and case-based learning for PCPs by a multidisciplinary specialty team utilizing videoconferencing technology. Two PCPs completed a year of SCAN-ECHO diabetes training. These two PCPs set up "diabetes mini-clinics" to treat difficult-to-control high-risk patients with diabetes mellitus from their own panel and from their colleagues in the same community-based outpatient clinic (CBOC). We utilized a retrospective program evaluation by t-test using pre/post glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) lab values after being seen by the two PCPs. A total of 39 patients, all with HbA1c > 9.0%, were seen in the two PCP mini-clinics over 15 months. The mean HbA1c improved from 10.2 ± 1.4% to 8.4 ± 1.8% (p Care of veteran patients with poorly controlled diabetes by PCPs who participated in SCAN-ECHO program leads to improvement in glycemic control. This model of health care delivery can be effective in remote or rural areas with limited availability of specialists. © The Author(s) 2015.

  8. A descriptive analysis of medical health services utilization of Veterans living in Ontario: a retrospective cohort study using administrative healthcare data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aiken, Alice B; Mahar, Alyson L; Kurdyak, Paul; Whitehead, Marlo; Groome, Patti A

    2016-08-04

    Health services utilization by Veterans following release may be different than the general population as the result of occupational conditions, requirements and injuries. This study provides the first longitudinal overview of Canadian Veteran healthcare utilization in the Ontario public health system. This is a retrospective cohort study designed to use Ontario's provincial healthcare data to study the demographics and healthcare utilization of Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) & RCMP Veterans living in Ontario. Veterans were eligible for the study if they released between January 1, 1990 and March 31, 2013. Databases at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences were linked by a unique identifier to study non-mental health related hospitalizations, emergency department visits, and physician visits. Overall and age-stratified descriptive statistics were calculated in five-year intervals following the date of release. The cohort is comprised of 23, 818 CAF or RCMP Veterans. Following entry into the provincial healthcare system, 82.6 % (95 % CI 82.1-83.1) of Veterans saw their family physician at least once over the first five years following release, 60.7 % (95 % CI 60.0-61.3) saw a non-mental health specialist, 40.8 % (95 % CI 40.2-41.5) went to the emergency department in that same time period and 9.9 % (9.5-10.3) were hospitalized for non-mental health related complaints. Patterns of non-mental health services utilization appeared to be time and service dependant. Stratifying health services utilization by age of the Veteran at entry into the provincial healthcare system revealed significant differences in service use and intensity. This study provides the first description of health services utilization by Veterans, following release from the CAF or RCMP. This work will inform the planning and delivery of support to Veterans in Ontario.

  9. 76 FR 72046 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-21

    ... provide preference and priority placement for homeless and at-risk Veterans, and provide on-site supportive services. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management...

  10. 76 FR 61150 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-03

    ... will be set aside to provide transitional housing and supportive services for homeless and at-risk Veterans. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward L. Bradley, III, Office of Asset Enterprise Management...

  11. 76 FR 71443 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-17

    ... placement for homeless and/or at-risk Veterans and their families; and provide a supportive services program. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044...

  12. 76 FR 71439 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for the Development...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-17

    ... placement for homeless and/or at-risk Veterans and their families; and provide a supportive services program. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044...

  13. Systemic Vulnerabilities to Suicide among Veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan Conflicts: Review of Case Reports from a National Veterans Affairs Database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Peter D.; Huber, Samuel J.; Watts, Bradley Vince; Bagian, James P.

    2011-01-01

    While suicide among recently returned veterans is of great concern, it is a relatively rare occurrence within individual hospitals and clinics. Root cause analysis (RCA) generates a detailed case report that can be used to identify system-based vulnerabilities following an adverse event. Review of a national database of RCA reports may identify…

  14. Application of the U.S. Army’s Integrated Planning to the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-05-22

    Art and Science MDMP Military Decision Making Process SOP Standard Operating Procedure SAMS School of Advanced Military Studies VBA Veterans...technological elements in the course of action. Furthermore the staff had access to Veterans Benefits Administration ( VBA ) data showing that factors...later than 1 January 2015, the VBA will have no unprocessed claims older than 125 days. The VBA will place processes into action which will ensure

  15. The Department of Veterans Affairs Nutritional Status Classification Scheme Allows for Rapid Assessment of Nutritional Status Prior to Autologous Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplantation and Identifies Patients at High Risk of Transplant-Related Complications

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Toro, Juan J; Haile, David J; Chao, Ju-Hsien; Schneider, Deanna; Jewell, Pamela S; Lee, Shuko; Freytes, César O

    2009-01-01

    ... of Veterans Affairs (VA) developed a Nutritional Status Classification Scheme (NSCS) to identify nutritionally compromised inpatients rapidly and reliably. The VA-NSCS takes into account a combination of body weight, routine laboratory tests, and clinical and dietary history. The VA-NSCS is routinely utilized for the nutritional evaluation ...

  16. Honoring our Nation's Veterans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robbins RA

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available No abstract available. Article truncated at 150 words. Today is Armistice Day, renamed Veterans Day in 1954, to honor our Nation's Veterans. In Washington the rhetoric from both the political right and left supports our Veterans. My cynical side reminds me that this might have something to do with Veterans voting in a higher percentage than the population as a whole, but let me give the politicians this one. Serving our Country in the military is something that deserves to be honored. I was proud to serve our Veterans over 30 years at the four Department of Veterans Affairs (VA hospitals. However, the VA has had a very bad year. First, in Washington there were the resignations of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki; the undersecretary for the Veterans Health Administration, Robert Petzel; and the undersecretary for the Veterans Benefits Administration, Allison Hickey. Locally, in the light of the VA wait scandal there were the firing of ...

  17. Performance of a Natural Language Processing (NLP) Tool to Extract Pulmonary Function Test (PFT) Reports from Structured and Semistructured Veteran Affairs (VA) Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, Brian C; Jones, Barbara E; Globe, Gary; Leng, Jianwei; Lu, Chao-Chin; He, Tao; Teng, Chia-Chen; Sullivan, Patrick; Zeng, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Pulmonary function tests (PFTs) are objective estimates of lung function, but are not reliably stored within the Veteran Health Affairs data systems as structured data. The aim of this study was to validate the natural language processing (NLP) tool we developed-which extracts spirometric values and responses to bronchodilator administration-against expert review, and to estimate the number of additional spirometric tests identified beyond the structured data. All patients at seven Veteran Affairs Medical Centers with a diagnostic code for asthma Jan 1, 2006-Dec 31, 2012 were included. Evidence of spirometry with a bronchodilator challenge (BDC) was extracted from structured data as well as clinical documents. NLP's performance was compared against a human reference standard using a random sample of 1,001 documents. In the validation set NLP demonstrated a precision of 98.9 percent (95 percent confidence intervals (CI): 93.9 percent, 99.7 percent), recall of 97.8 percent (95 percent CI: 92.2 percent, 99.7 percent), and an F-measure of 98.3 percent for the forced vital capacity pre- and post pairs and precision of 100 percent (95 percent CI: 96.6 percent, 100 percent), recall of 100 percent (95 percent CI: 96.6 percent, 100 percent), and an F-measure of 100 percent for the forced expiratory volume in one second pre- and post pairs for bronchodilator administration. Application of the NLP increased the proportion identified with complete bronchodilator challenge by 25 percent. This technology can improve identification of PFTs for epidemiologic research. Caution must be taken in assuming that a single domain of clinical data can completely capture the scope of a disease, treatment, or clinical test.

  18. Profile of Vietnam War Veterans (2015).

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Profile of Vietnam War Veterans uses the 2015 ACS to provide a view into the demographic characteristics and socioeconomic conditions of the Vietnam War Veteran...

  19. 38 CFR 14.605 - Suits against Department of Veterans Affairs employees arising out of a wrongful act or omission...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... contain a factual description of the employee's duties and responsibilities at the time of the incident... by a physician, dentist, nurse, physician's assistant, dentist's assistant, pharmacist or paramedical... personnel, while furnishing medical care and treatment in the exercise of duties in or for the Veterans...

  20. Factors related to rapidity of housing placement in Housing and Urban Development-Department of Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program of 1990s.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; O'Connell, Maria; Kasprow, Wesley J; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2011-01-01

    The Housing and Urban Development-Department of Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program is the largest supported housing program in the country for homeless veterans who are seeking rapid entry into permanent independent housing. This study examined factors related to how rapidly clients were housed in the early years of the program and how long they stayed in the program. Mental health, substance abuse, work/income, criminal history, and site were examined as predictors of process times. Regression analyses based on 627 HUD-VASH clients who entered the program between 1992 and 2003 showed that client characteristics were not rate-limiting factors for obtaining HUD-VASH housing; i.e., clients who had greater substance abuse problems or more extensive criminal histories did not take longer to obtain housing. The large differences associated with site of entry partly reflected a curvilinear relationship between the duration of operation of the HUD-VASH program and process times; i.e., at relatively younger and older programs, clients entered housing slightly faster than at programs in the middle range. Lastly, HUD-VASH clients whose case managers reported good therapeutic alliances stayed in the program longer. These findings have implications for the continued expansion of the HUD-VASH program.

  1. Suicidal ideation among young Afghanistan/Iraq War Veterans and civilians: Individual, social, and environmental risk factors and perception of unmet mental healthcare needs, United States, 2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logan, Joseph; Bohnert, Amy; Spies, Erica; Jannausch, Mary

    2016-11-30

    Suicidal Ideation among Afghanistan/Iraq War Veterans remains a health concern. As young Veterans adjust to civilian life, new risk factors might emerge and manifest differently in this group versus those in the general population. We explored these differences. With 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health data, we examined differences in risk of past-year suicidal ideation between Veterans of the Afghanistan/Iraq War periods aged 18-34 years (N=328) and age-comparable civilians (N=23,222). We compared groups based on individual and socio-environmental risk factors as well as perceptions of unmet mental healthcare needs. We report adjusted rate ratios (aRRs); interaction terms tested for between-group differences. PY suicidal ideation rates for Veterans and civilians did not differ (52 versus 59 per 1,000, p=0.60) and both groups shared many risk factors. However, drug problems and perceived unmet mental health care needs were vastly stronger risk factors among Veterans versus civilians (interaction terms indicated that the aRRs were 3.8-8.0 times higher for Veterans versus civilians). Other differences were discovered as well. Past-year suicidal ideation rates did not differ by Veteran status among young adults. However, different risk factors per group were detected, which can inform Veteran suicide prevention efforts. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  2. Rural Veterans by State (2014)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This speadsheet contains data from the 2014 American Community Survey and shows the demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of Veterans who live in rural and...

  3. The Veteran Population Projection 2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — VetPop2014 is an actuarial projection model developed by the Office of the Actuary (OACT) for Veteran population projection from Fiscal Year FY2014 to FY2043. Using...

  4. Veteran Religious Affiliation by State

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This dataset provide a count of Veteran by their religious affiliation and state of residence. The dataset set covers all 50 states, District of Columbia and other...

  5. Rural Veterans by State (2015)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This spreadsheet contains data from the 2015 American Community Survey and shows the demographic and socioeconomic characteristics of Veterans who live in rural and...

  6. Utility of routine urinalysis and urine culture testing in an ambulatory urology clinic: a quality improvement initiative in a Veterans healthcare facility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richards, Kyle A; Cesario, Stacy; Lim, Amy H; Best, Sara L; Deeren, Susan M; Bushman, Wade; Safdar, Nasia

    2017-02-01

    Urinalysis (UA) and urine culture (UCx) are commonly performed tests in the urology clinic. Many of these urine studies are performed prior to the patient visit may not always be indicated, thus contributing to unintended consequences such as antibiotic use and costs without enhancing patient care. Our objective was to perform a quality improvement initiative aimed to assess the utility of routine UA/UCx. The practice pattern at our site's Veteran Affairs (VA) urology clinic prior to 2014 was to obtain routine UA/UCx on most clinic visits prior to patient evaluation. Starting in 2014, we designed an intervention whereby our nurse practitioner triaged all new patient referrals and selectively ordered UA/UCx. We performed multivariable logistic regression to assess for predictors of obtaining UA or UCx. A total of 1308 patients were seen in January-March 2013 and 1456 in June-August 2014 and were included in this analysis. Fewer patients in 2014 received UA (59.8% versus 70.0%, p < 0.001) and UCx (49.6% versus 64.2%, p < 0.001). There was a decreased odds of obtaining UA in 2014 (OR 0.52, p < 0.001) as well as a decreased odds of obtaining UCx in 2014 (OR0.38, p < 0.001) on multivariable logistic regression. The results of UA/UCx only rarely resulted in change of management in either cohort (3%). Selective ordering resulted in an estimated cost savings of $4915.08/month in UCx costs alone. Our quality improvement initiatives reduced rates of UA/UCx testing when providers assess patients prior to ordering these tests. The implication of this initiative is significant cost savings for the healthcare system.

  7. Healthcare system-wide implementation of opioid-safety guideline recommendations: the case of urine drug screening and opioid-patient suicide- and overdose-related events in the Veterans Health Administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brennan, Penny L; Del Re, Aaron C; Henderson, Patricia T; Trafton, Jodie A

    2016-12-01

    This study provides an example of how healthcare system-wide progress in implementation of opioid-therapy guideline recommendations can be longitudinally assessed and then related to subsequent opioid-prescribed patient health and safety outcomes. Using longitudinal linear mixed effects analyses, we determined that in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare system (n = 141 facilities), over the 4-year interval from 2010 to 2013, a key opioid therapy guideline recommendation, urine drug screening (UDS), increased from 29 to 42 %, with an average within-facility increase rate of 4.5 % per year. Higher levels of UDS implementation from 2010 to 2013 were associated with lower risk of suicide and drug overdose events among VA opioid-prescribed patients in 2013, even after adjusting for patients' 2012 demographic characteristics and medical and mental health comorbidities. Findings suggest that VA clinicians and healthcare policymakers have been responsive to the 2010 VA/Department of Defense (DOD) UDS treatment guideline recommendation, resulting in improved patient safety for VA opioid-prescribed patients.

  8. 76 FR 4152 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-24

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV... Veterans Affairs. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), Department of... application and servicing processes for the VBA Compensation and Pension (C&P) Service, Education (EDU...

  9. 78 FR 37278 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-06-20

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV... Veterans Affairs. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), Department of... application and servicing processes for the VBA Compensation Service (CS), Pension Service (P&F), Education...

  10. 38 CFR 17.251 - The Subcommittee on Academic Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false The Subcommittee on Academic Affairs. 17.251 Section 17.251 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS MEDICAL Grants for Exchange of Information § 17.251 The Subcommittee on Academic Affairs. There is...

  11. Development of the Veterans Healthcare Administration (VHA) Ophthalmic Surgical Outcome Database (OSOD) project and the role of ophthalmic nurse reviewers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara-Smalling, Agueda; Cakiner-Egilmez, Tulay; Miller, Dawn; Redshirt, Ella; Williams, Dale

    2011-01-01

    Currently, ophthalmic surgical cases are not included in the Veterans Administration Surgical Quality Improvement Project data collection. Furthermore, there is no comprehensive protocol in the health system for prospectively measuring outcomes for eye surgery in terms of safety and quality. There are 400,000 operative cases in the system per year. Of those, 48,000 (12%) are ophthalmic surgical cases, with 85% (41,000) of those being cataract cases. The Ophthalmic Surgical Outcome Database Pilot Project was developed to incorporate ophthalmology into VASQIP, thus evaluating risk factors and improving cataract surgical outcomes. Nurse reviewers facilitate the monitoring and measuring of these outcomes. Since its inception in 1778, the Veterans Administration (VA) Health System has provided comprehensive healthcare to millions of deserving veterans throughout the U.S. and its territories. Historically, the quality of healthcare provided by the VA has been the main focus of discussion because it did not meet a standard of care comparable to that of the private sector. Information regarding quality of healthcare services and outcomes data had been unavailable until 1986, when Congress mandated the VA to compare its surgical outcomes to those of the private sector (PL-99-166). 1 Risk adjustment of VA surgical outcomes began in 1987 with the Continuous Improvement in Cardiac Surgery Program (CICSP) in which cardiac surgical outcomes were reported and evaluated. 2 Between 1991 and 1993, the National VA Surgical Risk Study (NVASRS) initiated a validated risk-adjustment model for predicting surgical outcomes and comparative assessment of the quality of surgical care in 44 VA medical centers. 3 The success of NVASRS encouraged the VA to establish an ongoing program for monitoring and improving the quality of surgical care, thus developing the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) in 1994. 4 According to a prospective study conducted between 1991-1997 in 123

  12. Use of the Adaptive LASSO Method to Identify PM2.5 Components Associated with Blood Pressure in Elderly Men: The Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Lingzhen; Koutrakis, Petros; Coull, Brent A; Sparrow, David; Vokonas, Pantel S; Schwartz, Joel D

    2016-01-01

    PM2.5 (particulate matter ≤ 2.5 μm) has been associated with adverse cardiovascular outcomes, but it is unclear whether specific PM2.5 components, particularly metals, may be responsible for cardiovascular effects. We aimed to determine which PM2.5 components are associated with blood pressure in a longitudinal cohort. We fit linear mixed-effects models with the adaptive LASSO penalty to longitudinal data from 718 elderly men in the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study, 1999-2010. We controlled for PM2.5 mass, age, body mass index, use of antihypertensive medication (ACE inhibitors, non-ophthalmic beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, diuretics, and angiotensin receptor antagonists), smoking status, alcohol intake, years of education, temperature, and season as fixed effects in the models, and additionally applied the adaptive LASSO method to select PM2.5 components associated with blood pressure. Final models were identified by the Bayesian Information Criterion (BIC). For systolic blood pressure (SBP), nickel (Ni) and sodium (Na) were selected by the adaptive LASSO, whereas only Ni was selected for diastolic blood pressure (DBP). An interquartile range increase (2.5 ng/m3) in 7-day moving-average Ni was associated with 2.48-mmHg (95% CI: 1.45, 3.50 mmHg) increase in SBP and 2.22-mmHg (95% CI: 1.69, 2.75 mmHg) increase in DBP, respectively. Associations were comparable when the analysis was restricted to study visits with PM2.5 below the 75th percentile of the distribution (12 μg/m3). Our study suggested that exposure to ambient Ni was associated with increased blood pressure independent of PM2.5 mass in our study population of elderly men. Further research is needed to confirm our findings, assess generalizability to other populations, and identify potential mechanisms for Ni effects. Dai L, Koutrakis P, Coull BA, Sparrow D, Vokonas PS, Schwartz JD. 2016. Use of the adaptive LASSO method to identify PM2.5 components associated with blood pressure in

  13. Decisions about Renal Replacement Therapy in Patients with Advanced Kidney Disease in the US Department of Veterans Affairs, 2000–2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hebert, Paul L.; Laundry, Ryan J.; Hammond, Kenric W.; Liu, Chuan-Fen; Burrows, Nilka R.; O’Hare, Ann M.

    2016-01-01

    Background and objectives It is not known what proportion of United States patients with advanced CKD go on to receive RRT. In other developed countries, receipt of RRT is highly age dependent and the exception rather than the rule at older ages. Design, setting, participants, & measurements We conducted a retrospective study of a national cohort of 28,568 adults who were receiving care within the US Department of Veteran Affairs and had a sustained eGFR <15 ml/min per 1.73 m2 between January 1, 2000 to December 31, 2009. We used linked administrative data from the US Renal Data System, US Department of Veteran Affairs, and Medicare to identify cohort members who received RRT during follow-up through October 1, 2011 (n=19,165). For a random 25% sample of the remaining 9403 patients, we performed an in-depth review of their VA–wide electronic medical records to determine the treatment status of their CKD. Results Two thirds (67.1%) of cohort members received RRT on the basis of administrative data. On the basis of the results of chart review, we estimate that an additional 7.5% (95% confidence interval, 7.2% to 7.8%) of cohort members had, in fact, received dialysis, that 10.9% (95% confidence interval, 10.6% to 11.3%) were preparing for and/or discussing dialysis but had not started dialysis at most recent follow-up, and that a decision had been made not to pursue dialysis in 14.5% (95% confidence interval, 14.1% to 14.9%). The percentage of cohort members who received or were preparing to receive RRT ranged from 96.2% (95% confidence interval, 94.4% to 97.4%) for those <45 years old to 53.3% (95% confidence interval, 50.7% to 55.9%) for those aged ≥85 years old. Results were similar after stratification by tertile of Gagne comorbidity score. Conclusions In this large United States cohort of patients with advanced CKD, the majority received or were preparing to receive RRT. This was true even among the oldest patients with the highest burden of comorbidity

  14. Despite variation in volume, Veterans Affairs hospitals show consistent outcomes among patients with non-postoperative mechanical ventilation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooke, Colin R; Kennedy, Edward H; Wiitala, Wyndy L; Almenoff, Peter L; Sales, Anne E; Iwashyna, Theodore J

    2012-09-01

    To assess the relationship between volume of nonoperative mechanically ventilated patients receiving care in a specific Veterans Health Administration hospital and their mortality. Retrospective cohort study. One-hundred nineteen Veterans Health Administration medical centers. We identified 5,131 hospitalizations involving mechanically ventilated patients in an intensive care unit during 2009, who did not receive surgery. None. We extracted demographic and clinical data from the VA Inpatient Evaluation Center. For each hospital, we defined volume as the total number of nonsurgical admissions receiving mechanical ventilation in an intensive care unit during 2009. We examined the hospital contribution to 30-day mortality using multilevel logistic regression models with a random intercept for each hospital. We quantified the extent of interhospital variation in 30-day mortality using the intraclass correlation coefficient and median odds ratio. We used generalized estimating equations to examine the relationship between volume and 30-day mortality and risk-adjusted all models using a patient-level prognostic score derived from clinical data representing the risk of death conditional on treatment at a high-volume hospital. Mean age for the sample was 65 (SD 11) yrs, 97% were men, and 60% were white. The median VA hospital cared for 40 (interquartile range 19-62) mechanically ventilated patients in 2009. Crude 30-day mortality for these patients was 36.9%. After reliability and risk adjustment to the median patient, adjusted hospital-level mortality varied from 33.5% to 40.6%. The intraclass correlation coefficient for the hospital-level variation was 0.6% (95% confidence interval 0.1, 3.4%), with a median odds ratio of 1.15 (95% confidence interval 1.06, 1.38). The relationship between hospital volume of mechanically ventilated and 30-day mortality was not statistically significant: each 50-patient increase in volume was associated with a nonsignificant 2% decrease in

  15. Towards a Heterogeneous, Polystore-like Data Architecture for the US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) Enterprise Analytics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Begoli, Edmon [ORNL; Bates, Jack [Veterans Administration; Kistler, Derek E [ORNL

    2016-01-01

    The Polystore architecture revisits the federated approach to access and querying of the standalone, independent databases in the uniform and optimized fashion, but this time in the context of heterogeneous data and specialized analyses. In the light of this architectural philosophy, and in the light of the major data architecture development efforts at the US Department of Veterans Administration (VA), we discuss the need for the heterogeneous data store consisting of the large relational data warehouse, an image and text datastore, and a peta-scale genomic repository. The VA's heterogeneous datastore would, to a larger or smaller degree, follow the architectural blueprint proposed by the polystore architecture. To this end, we discuss the current state of the data architecture at VA, architectural alternatives for development of the heterogeneous datastore, the anticipated challenges, and the drawbacks and benefits of adopting the polystore architecture.

  16. Evaluation of a command-line parser-based order entry pathway for the Department of Veterans Affairs electronic patient record.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovis, C; Chapko, M K; Martin, D P; Payne, T H; Baud, R H; Hoey, P J; Fihn, S D

    2001-01-01

    To improve and simplify electronic order entry in an existing electronic patient record, the authors developed an alternative system for entering orders, which is based on a command- interface using robust and simple natural-language techniques. The authors conducted a randomized evaluation of the new entry pathway, measuring time to complete a standard set of orders, and users' satisfaction measured by questionnaire. A group of 16 physician volunteers from the staff of the Department of Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System-Seattle Division participated in the evaluation. Thirteen of the 16 physicians (81%) were able to enter medical orders more quickly using the natural-language-based entry system than the standard graphical user interface that uses menus and dialogs (mean time spared, 16.06 +/- 4.52 minutes; P=0.029). Compared with the graphical user interface, the command--based pathway was perceived as easier to learn (P<0.01), was considered easier to use and faster (P<0.01), and was rated better overall (P<0.05). Physicians found the command- interface easier to learn and faster to use than the usual menu-driven system. The major advantage of the system is that it combines an intuitive graphical user interface with the power and speed of a natural-language analyzer.

  17. Institutional Incentives for Mentoring at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Universities: Associations With Mentors' Perceptions and Time Spent Mentoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maisel, Natalya C; Halvorson, Max A; Finney, John W; Bi, Xiaoyu; Hayashi, Ko P; Blonigen, Daniel M; Weitlauf, Julie C; Timko, Christine; Cronkite, Ruth C

    2017-04-01

    Limited empirical attention to date has focused on best practices in advanced research mentoring in the health services research domain. The authors investigated whether institutional incentives for mentoring (e.g., consideration of mentoring in promotion criteria) were associated with mentors' perceptions of mentoring benefits and costs and with time spent mentoring. The authors conducted an online survey in 2014 of a national sample of mentors of U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Health Services Research and Development Service (HSR&D) mentored career development award recipients who received an award during 2000-2012. Regression analyses were used to examine institutional incentives as predictors of perceptions of benefits and costs of mentoring and time spent mentoring. Of the 145 mentors invited, 119 (82%) responded and 110 (76%) provided complete data for the study items. Overall, mentors who reported more institutional incentives also reported greater perceived benefits of mentoring (P = .03); however, more incentives were not significantly associated with perceived costs of mentoring. Mentors who reported more institutional incentives also reported spending a greater percentage of time mentoring (P = .02). University incentives were associated with perceived benefits of mentoring (P = .02), whereas VA incentives were associated with time spent mentoring (P = .003). Institutional policies that promote and support mentorship of junior investigators, specifically by recognizing and rewarding the efforts of mentors, are integral to fostering mentorship programs that contribute to the development of early-career health services researchers into independent investigators.

  18. A retrospective review of insulin requirements in patients using U-500 insulin hospitalized to a Veterans Affairs Hospital.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kedia, Rohit; Desouza, Cyrus; Smith, Lynette M; Shivaswamy, Vijay

    2017-05-01

    The aim of this study was to compare the changes in the total daily dose (TDD) of insulin of patients on U-500 insulin; before hospitalization, during hospitalization and six weeks after discharge. A retrospective chart review of veterans with type 2 diabetes receiving U-500 insulin in the ambulatory setting and who were admitted between 2012 and 2015 was performed. During hospitalization, patients were transitioned to receive U-100 insulin (detemir or glargine for basal and aspart for bolus). Paired t-tests were conducted to compare TDD of insulin during hospitalization to prior to admission and at six week of follow-up. The average hemoglobin A1c at the time of hospital admission was 8.3±1.5% (n=20). The average TDD of insulin during hospitalization (124±67units) was significantly less than prior to admission (295±123units) and at six week follow-up (310±105units). The average glucose during hospitalization was 180±36mg/dL. Hypoglycemia was less than 0.5%. We showed that patients received significantly less total daily insulin while hospitalized compared to their insulin doses in the ambulatory setting, and we demonstrate that patients receiving U-500 insulin can be safely transitioned to U-100 insulin while hospitalized, with minimal hypoglycemia. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  19. Predictive Modeling and Concentration of the Risk of Suicide: Implications for Preventive Interventions in the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, John F; Bossarte, Robert M; Katz, Ira R; Thompson, Caitlin; Kemp, Janet; Hannemann, Claire M; Nielson, Christopher; Schoenbaum, Michael

    2015-09-01

    The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) evaluated the use of predictive modeling to identify patients at risk for suicide and to supplement ongoing care with risk-stratified interventions. Suicide data came from the National Death Index. Predictors were measures from VHA clinical records incorporating patient-months from October 1, 2008, to September 30, 2011, for all suicide decedents and 1% of living patients, divided randomly into development and validation samples. We used data on all patients alive on September 30, 2010, to evaluate predictions of suicide risk over 1 year. Modeling demonstrated that suicide rates were 82 and 60 times greater than the rate in the overall sample in the highest 0.01% stratum for calculated risk for the development and validation samples, respectively; 39 and 30 times greater in the highest 0.10%; 14 and 12 times greater in the highest 1.00%; and 6.3 and 5.7 times greater in the highest 5.00%. Predictive modeling can identify high-risk patients who were not identified on clinical grounds. VHA is developing modeling to enhance clinical care and to guide the delivery of preventive interventions.

  20. Veterans Health Administration (VHA)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Social Security Administration — The purpose of this agreement is for SSA to verify SSNs and other identifying information for the Department of Veterans Affairs, VHA. DVA will use the information...

  1. Veterans Choice Program

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — If you are already enrolled in VA health care, the Choice Program allows you to receive health care within your community. Using this program does NOT impact your...

  2. 78 FR 59769 - Agency Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-27

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV...) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-21), this notice announces that the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA...-0782.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran...

  3. 76 FR 20823 - Agency Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-04-13

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV... U.S.C. 3501-21), this notice announces that the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), Department... INFORMATION: Title: Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Voice of the Veteran (VOV) Pilot Surveys. a...

  4. Mental and Physical Health Conditions in US Combat Veterans: Results From the National Health and Resilience in Veterans Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Melissa M; Harpaz-Rotem, Ilan; Tsai, Jack; Southwick, Steven M; Pietrzak, Robert H

    2017-06-22

    To identify sociodemographic and military characteristics of combat-exposed and non-combat-exposed veterans in the United States and to compare rates of mental and physical health conditions in these populations. Data were analyzed from the National Health and Resilience in Veterans Study (NHRVS), a contemporary, nationally representative survey of 1,480 US veterans conducted September-October 2013. Poststratification weights were applied to analyses to permit generalizability of results to the US veteran population. Outcomes measured included lifetime and current psychiatric disorders and physical health conditions. A total 38% of US veterans reported being exposed to combat. Compared to noncombat veterans, combat veterans were younger, had greater household income, and served a greater number of years in the military; were more likely to be male, to have served in the Marine Corps, and to use the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System as their main source of health care; and reported a greater number of lifetime potentially traumatic events. After adjustment for these sociodemographic and military differences, combat veterans were more than 3 times as likely as noncombat veterans to screen positive for lifetime posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and more than twice as likely for current PTSD and had 82% greater odds of screening positive for current generalized anxiety disorder. After additionally controlling for lifetime diagnoses of PTSD and depression, alcohol or drug use disorder, and nicotine dependence, combat veterans had 68% greater odds of having attempted suicide and 85% and 38% greater odds of being diagnosed with a stroke and chronic pain, respectively. Younger combat veterans were more likely than older combat veterans to screen positive for lifetime (30.6% vs 10.1%) and current PTSD (19.2% vs 4.9%) and suicidal ideation (18.6% vs 6.9%) and to have been diagnosed with migraine headaches (12.8% vs 2.1%), while older combat veterans were more likely than

  5. A tale of two veterans: homeless vs domiciled veterans presenting to a psychiatric urgent care clinic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Haoyu; Iglewicz, Alana; Golshan, Shah; Zisook, Sidney

    2013-11-01

    The relationship between homelessness among veterans and mental illness and suicidality has not been clearly defined. To further examine this relationship, we compared rates of mental illness and suicidality among homeless and domiciled veterans seeking urgent psychiatric care at a US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facility. Information was collected by survey from 482 consecutive veterans seeking care at the Psychiatric Emergency Clinic (PEC) at the VA San Diego Healthcare System. A total of 73 homeless veterans were designated the homeless group and 73 domiciled veterans were randomly selected as the domiciled group. Suicidality and mental illnesses were assessed by self-assessment questionnaires and chart review of diagnoses. The homeless group had significantly higher rates of past suicide attempts (47% vs 27%) and recent reckless or self-harming behavior (33% vs 18%) compared with the domiciled group but significantly lower rates of depressive disorder (25% vs 44%), as diagnosed by a PEC physician. There were no differences between groups on the questionnaires for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, or alcohol abuse. Nor were there differences in diagnoses of bipolar disorder, PTSD, anxiety disorder, schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorder, or alcohol abuse. Veterans seeking help from a VA-based urgent psychiatric care clinic often are burdened by substantial depression, alcohol use disorders, PTSD, and both past and present suicide risk.

  6. 76 FR 67022 - Enhanced-Use Lease (EUL) of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Real Property for a Mixed-Use...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-28

    ... INFORMATION CONTACT: Edward Bradley, Office of Asset Enterprise Management (044), Department of Veterans... permanent housing facility for homeless and at-risk Veterans and their families where the lessee will give...

  7. Mood disorders and risk of lung cancer in the EAGLE case-control study and in the U.S. Veterans Affairs inpatient cohort.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David E Capo-Ramos

    Full Text Available Mood disorders may affect lung cancer risk. We evaluated this hypothesis in two large studies.We examined 1,939 lung cancer cases and 2,102 controls from the Environment And Genetics in Lung cancer Etiology (EAGLE case-control study conducted in Italy (2002-2005, and 82,945 inpatients with a lung cancer diagnosis and 3,586,299 person-years without a lung cancer diagnosis in the U.S. Veterans Affairs Inpatient Cohort (VA study, composed of veterans with a VA hospital admission (1969-1996. In EAGLE, we calculated odds ratios (ORs and 95% confidence intervals (CI, with extensive adjustment for tobacco smoking and multiple lifestyle factors. In the VA study, we estimated lung cancer relative risks (RRs and 95% CIs with time-dependent Poisson regression, adjusting for attained age, calendar year, hospital visits, time within the study, and related previous medical diagnoses. In EAGLE, we found decreased lung cancer risk in subjects with a personal history of mood disorders (OR: 0.59, 95% CI: 0.44-0.79, based on 121 lung cancer incident cases and 192 controls and family history of mood disorders (OR: 0.62, 95% CI: 0.50-0.77, based on 223 lung cancer cases and 345 controls. The VA study analyses yielded similar results (RR: 0.74, 95% CI: 0.71-0.77, based on 2,304 incident lung cancer cases and 177,267 non-cancer person-years in men with discharge diagnoses for mood disorders. History of mood disorders was associated with nicotine dependence, alcohol and substance use and psychometric scales of depressive and anxiety symptoms in controls for these studies.The consistent finding of a relationship between mood disorders and lung cancer risk across two large studies calls for further research into the complex interplay of risk factors associated with these two widespread and debilitating diseases. Although we adjusted for smoking effects in EAGLE, residual confounding of the results by smoking cannot be ruled out.

  8. Long-term electrical survival analysis of Riata and Riata ST silicone leads: National Veterans Affairs experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Raphael K; Massie, Barry M; Varosy, Paul D; Moore, Hans; Rumsfeld, John; Lee, Byron K; Keung, Edmund

    2012-12-01

    A medical device advisory issued by St Jude Medical in November 2011 estimated 0.63% all-cause abrasion rate on their Riata and Riata ST silicone high-voltage lead families (Riata/ST), leading to Food and Drug Administration class I recall. We performed an independent comparative, long-term electrical survival analysis of Riata/ST and 3 other high-voltage lead families in a large national cohort of patients. To evaluate long-term electrical survival of Riata/ST leads relative to other commonly evaluated high-voltage leads. Failure rates of Riata/ST, Sprint Quattro Secure (Quattro), Sprint Fidelis (Fidelis), and Endotak Reliance G/SG (Endotak) leads from the Veterans Administration's National Cardiac Device Surveillance Center database, consisting of 24,145 patients with remote transmissions since 2003, were analyzed. Survival Probabilities were determined with Kaplan-Meier survival analysis and compared using the log-rank test. Of 1,403 Riata/ST, 6,091 Quattro, 5,073 Fidelis, and 2,401 Endotak leads identified, 5-year survival probability of Riata/ST leads (97.5%) was significantly lower than that of Quattro (99.3%) and Endotak (99.4%) leads (P leads (89.6%) (P leads showed a 5-year survival of 95.5% (95% confidence interval 92.4-97.4) compared to 98.4% (95% confidence interval 97.1-99.1) in Riata leads (P = .003). There is decreased survival probability of Riata/ST leads compared to other contemporary high-voltage leads, with decreased survival of Riata ST silicone compared to Riata lead series. Careful long-term follow-up should be maintained in patients with Riata/ST leads in order to prevent inappropriate shocks or failed device interventions. Our results were determined in advance of Food and Drug Administration class I recall, which suggested that large-scale remote monitoring may be an effective tool for continued implantable cardioverter-defibrillator system surveillance. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. Employment of Veterans in the Federal Executive Branch

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — These quick facts use data from the 2011 Employment of Veterans in the Federal Executive Branch to compare Veteran employment in the Federal Government by agency,...

  10. National Survey of Veterans, Active Duty Service Members, Demobilized National Guard and Reserve Members, Family Members, and Surviving Spouses

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The 2010 National Survey of Veterans (NSV) is the sixth in a series of comprehensive nationwide surveys designed to help the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) plan...

  11. Transmission of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus to health care worker gowns and gloves during care of residents in Veterans Affairs nursing homes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineles, Lisa; Morgan, Daniel J; Lydecker, Alison; Johnson, J Kristie; Sorkin, John D; Langenberg, Patricia; Blanco, Natalia; Lesse, Alan; Sellick, John; Gupta, Kalpana; Leykum, Luci; Cadena, Jose; Lepcha, Nickie; Roghmann, Mary-Claire

    2017-09-01

    This was an observational study designed to estimate the frequency of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) transmission to gowns and gloves worn by health care workers (HCWs) interacting with Veterans Affairs Community Living Center (VA nursing home) residents to inform MRSA prevention policies. Participants included residents and HCWs from 7 VA nursing homes in 4 states and Washington, DC. Residents were cultured for MRSA at the anterior nares, perianal skin, and wound (if present). HCWs wore gowns and gloves during usual care activities. After each activity, a research coordinator swabbed the HCW's gown and gloves. Swabs were cultured for MRSA. There were 200 residents enrolled; 94 (46%) were MRSA colonized. Glove contamination was higher than gown contamination (20% vs 11%, respectively; P  1.0, P < .05) for gown contamination included changing dressings (eg, wound), dressing, providing hygiene (eg, brushing teeth), and bathing. Low-risk care activities (OR < 1.0, P < .05 or no transmission) for gown contamination included glucose monitoring, giving medications, and feeding. MRSA transmission from colonized residents to gloves was higher than transmission to gowns. Transmission to gloves varies by type of care, but all care had a risk of contamination, demonstrating the importance of hand hygiene after all care. Transmission to gowns was significantly higher with certain types of care. Optimizing gown and glove use by targeting high-risk care activities could improve resident-centered care for MRSA-colonized residents by promoting a home-like environment. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  12. Passing the baton: a grounded practical theory of handoff communication between multidisciplinary providers in two Department of Veterans Affairs outpatient settings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koenig, Christopher J; Maguen, Shira; Daley, Aaron; Cohen, Greg; Seal, Karen H

    2013-01-01

    Handoffs are communication processes that enact the transfer of responsibility between providers across clinical settings. Prior research on handoff communication has focused on inpatient settings between provider teams and has emphasized patient safety. This study examines handoff communication within multidisciplinary provider teams in two outpatient settings. To conduct an exploratory study that describes handoff communication among multidisciplinary providers, to develop a theory-driven descriptive framework for outpatient handoffs, and to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different handoff types. Qualitative, in-depth, semi-structured interviews with 31 primary care, mental health, and social work providers in two Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center outpatient clinics. Audio-recorded interviews were transcribed and analyzed using Grounded Practical Theory to develop a theoretical model of and a descriptive framework for handoff communication among multidisciplinary providers. Multidisciplinary providers reported that handoff decisions across settings were made spontaneously and without clear guidelines. Two situated values, clinic efficiency and patient-centeredness, shaped multidisciplinary providers' handoff decisions. Providers reported three handoff techniques along a continuum: the electronic handoff, which was the most clinically efficient; the provider-to-provider handoff, which balanced clinic efficiency and patient-centeredness; and the collaborative handoff, which was the most patient-centered. Providers described handoff choice as a practical response to manage constituent features of clinic efficiency (time, space, medium of communication) and patient-centeredness (information continuity, management continuity, relational continuity, and social interaction). We present a theoretical and descriptive framework to help providers evaluate differential handoff use, reflect on situated values guiding clinic communication, and guide

  13. Task Delegation and Burnout Trade-offs Among Primary Care Providers and Nurses in Veterans Affairs Patient Aligned Care Teams (VA PACTs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Samuel T; Helfrich, Christian D; Grembowski, David; Hulen, Elizabeth; Clinton, Walter L; Wood, Gordon B; Kim, Linda; Rose, Danielle E; Stewart, Greg

    2018-01-01

    Appropriate delegation of clinical tasks from primary care providers (PCPs) to other team members may reduce employee burnout in primary care. However, (1) the extent to which delegation occurs within multidisciplinary teams, (2) factors associated with greater delegation, and (3) whether delegation is associated with burnout are all unknown. We performed a national cross-sectional survey of Veterans Affairs (VA) PCP-nurse dyads in Department of VA primary care clinics, 4 years into the VA's patient-centered medical home initiative. PCPs reported the extent to which they relied on other team members to complete 15 common primary care tasks; paired nurses reported how much they were relied on to complete the same tasks. A composite score of task delegation/reliance was developed by taking the average of the responses to the 15 questions. We performed multivariable regression to explore predictors of task delegation and burnout. Among 777 PCP-nurse dyads, PCPs reported delegating tasks less than nurses reported being relied on (PCP mean ± standard deviation composite delegation score, 2.97± 0.64 [range, 1-4]; nurse composite reliance score, 3.26 ± 0.50 [range, 1-4]). Approximately 48% of PCPs and 35% of nurses reported burnout. PCPs who reported more task delegation reported less burnout (odds ratio [OR], 0.62 per unit of delegation; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.49-0.78), whereas nurses who reported being relied on more reported more burnout (OR, 1.83 per unit of reliance; 95% CI, 1.33-2.5). Task delegation was associated with less burnout for PCPs, whereas task reliance was associated with greater burnout for nurses. Strategies to improve work life in primary care by increasing PCP task delegation must consider the impact on nurses. © Copyright 2018 by the American Board of Family Medicine.

  14. 77 FR 13390 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-06

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... Affairs on health care issues affecting enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas. The Committee examines programs and policies that impact the provision of VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural...

  15. Central implementation strategies outperform local ones in improving HIV testing in Veterans Healthcare Administration facilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goetz, Matthew Bidwell; Hoang, Tuyen; Knapp, Herschel; Burgess, Jane; Fletcher, Michael D; Gifford, Allen L; Asch, Steven M

    2013-10-01

    Pilot data suggest that a multifaceted approach may increase HIV testing rates, but the scalability of this approach and the level of support needed for successful implementation remain unknown. To evaluate the effectiveness of a scaled-up multi-component intervention in increasing the rate of risk-based and routine HIV diagnostic testing in primary care clinics and the impact of differing levels of program support. Three arm, quasi-experimental implementation research study. Veterans Health Administration (VHA) facilities. Persons receiving primary care between June 2009 and September 2011 INTERVENTION: A multimodal program, including a real-time electronic clinical reminder to facilitate HIV testing, provider feedback reports and provider education, was implemented in Central and Local Arm Sites; sites in the Central Arm also received ongoing programmatic support. Control Arm sites had no intervention Frequency of performing HIV testing during the 6 months before and after implementation of a risk-based clinical reminder (phase I) or routine clinical reminder (phase II). The adjusted rate of risk-based testing increased by 0.4 %, 5.6 % and 10.1 % in the Control, Local and Central Arms, respectively (all comparisons, p marketing significantly increased the frequency at which HIV testing is offered and performed in VHA facilities. These findings support a multimodal approach toward achieving the goal of having every American know their HIV status as a matter of routine clinical practice.

  16. Services utilization among recently homeless veterans: a gender-based comparison.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montgomery, Ann Elizabeth; Byrne, Thomas H

    2014-03-01

    As women emerge as a significant segment of the Veteran population, there is a need to understand how they enter the homeless system, the impact of homelessness on healthcare, and how this varies by gender. This study provides a gender-based comparison of Veterans' utilization of U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health and behavioral health services following the onset of a homeless episode and assesses the relationship between services utilization and Veterans' entry into the homeless system. Male and female veterans were equally as likely to use mainstream and VA homeless services. There were few differences between genders in inpatient services use following a homeless episode. Men used more substance abuse outpatient treatment and emergency services whereas women used outpatient medical treatment. Veterans who sought non-VA homeless services were less likely to use outpatient services but more likely to access emergency services. Veterans experiencing homelessness who do not use VA homeless assistance services are less engaged with preventative VA health and behavioral healthcare. Veterans who are homeless but not identified as such by VA, particularly women, need additional engagement. Ongoing study of gender-based differences in services utilization among homeless and at-risk Veterans is needed. Reprint & Copyright © 2014 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  17. Perspectives of family and veterans on family programs to support reintegration of returning veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Ellen P; Sherman, Michelle D; McSweeney, Jean C; Pyne, Jeffrey M; Owen, Richard R; Dixon, Lisa B

    2015-08-01

    Combat deployment and reintegration are challenging for service members and their families. Although family involvement in mental health care is increasing in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system, little is known about family members' preferences for services. This study elicited the perspectives of returning Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder and their families regarding family involvement in veterans' mental health care. Semistructured qualitative interviews were conducted with 47 veterans receiving care for posttraumatic stress disorder at the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System or Oklahoma City VA Medical Center and 36 veteran-designated family members. Interviews addressed perceived needs related to veterans' readjustment to civilian life, interest in family involvement in joint veteran/family programs, and desired family program content. Interview data were analyzed using content analysis and constant comparison. Both groups strongly supported inclusion of family members in programs to facilitate veterans' postdeployment readjustment and reintegration into civilian life. Both desired program content focused on information, practical skills, support, and gaining perspective on the other's experience. Although family and veteran perspectives were similar, family members placed greater emphasis on parenting-related issues and the kinds of support they and their children needed during and after deployment. To our knowledge, this is the first published report on preferences regarding VA postdeployment reintegration support that incorporates the perspectives of returning male and female veterans and those of their families. Findings will help VA and community providers working with returning veterans tailor services to the needs and preferences of this important-to-engage population. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. Provider and Site-Level Determinants of Testosterone Prescribing in the Veterans Healthcare System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jasuja, Guneet K; Bhasin, Shalender; Rose, Adam J; Reisman, Joel I; Hanlon, Joseph T; Miller, Donald R; Morreale, Anthony P; Pogach, Leonard M; Cunningham, Francesca E; Park, Angela; Wiener, Renda S; Gifford, Allen L; Berlowitz, Dan R

    2017-09-01

    Testosterone prescribing rates have increased substantially in the past decade. However, little is known about the context within which such prescriptions occur. We evaluated provider- and site-level determinants of receipt of testosterone and of guideline-concordant testosterone prescribing. This study was cross-sectional in design. This study was conducted at the Veterans Health Administration (VA). Study participants were a national cohort of male patients who had received at least one outpatient prescription within the VA during fiscal year (FY) 2008 to FY 2012. A total of 38,648 providers and 130 stations were associated with these patients. This study measured receipt of testosterone and guideline-concordant testosterone prescribing. Providers ranging in age from 31 to 60 years, with less experience in the VA [all adjusted odds ratio (AOR), testosterone compared with older providers, providers of longer VA tenure, and primary care providers, respectively. Sites located in the West compared with the Northeast [AOR, 1.75; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.45-2.11] and care received at a community-based outpatient clinic compared with a medical center (AOR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.20-1.24) also predicted testosterone use. Although they were more likely to prescribe testosterone, endocrinologists were also more likely to obtain an appropriate workup before prescribing compared with primary care providers (AOR, 2.14; 95% CI, 1.54-2.97). Our results highlight the opportunity to intervene at both the provider and the site levels to improve testosterone prescribing. This study also provides a useful example of how to examine contributions to prescribing variation at different levels of the health care system.

  19. Employment of Veterans in Executive Branch

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This quick facts summarizes the Veteran new hires into the Federal government by disabled and by 30 percent and higher disabled groups for 2008 to 2015. It shows the...

  20. A Latent Content Analysis of Barriers and Supports to Healthcare: Perspectives From Caregivers of Service Members and Veterans With Military-Related Traumatic Brain Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlozzi, Noelle E; Lange, Rael T; French, Louis M; Sander, Angelle M; Freedman, Jenna; Brickell, Tracey A

    2018-01-30

    To identify barriers and supports that caregivers of individuals with military-related traumatic brain injury (TBI) encounter when navigating the military healthcare system; this information will be used as the foundation of a new patient-reported outcome measure. Community. Forty-five caregivers of service members and veterans (SMV) who sustained a medically documented mild, moderate, severe, or penetrating TBI. Latent content analysis. Nine focus group discussions of barriers and supports to navigating the military healthcare system and community resources. Latent content analysis indicated that caregivers discussed barriers (66%) and supports (34%) to obtaining care within the military healthcare system and the community. Caregivers most frequently discussed SMVs' interactions with healthcare, their own interactions with healthcare, family care, and community organizations. Caregivers confront numerous challenges while pursuing healthcare services. Although much of the discussion focused on barriers and perceived unmet needs within the military healthcare system, caregivers also recognized supports within the military healthcare system and general community. Increased attention to accessibility and quality of services, as well as reducing financial burden, can lead to improved health-related quality of life for caregivers and their SMVs.

  1. 77 FR 52135 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-08-28

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA... Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held on September 5-7, 2012, in the Onondaga 3 Room at the Embassy... Veterans. The Committee shall assemble and review information relating to the needs of homeless Veterans...

  2. 76 FR 21107 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-04-14

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas and discusses ways to improve and enhance... Secretary, VA Veteran Centers services, rural women Veteran health care, and the meeting agenda and planning...

  3. Mixed methods study examining work reintegration experiences from perspectives of Veterans with mental health disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kukla, Marina; Rattray, Nicholas A; Salyers, Michelle P

    2015-01-01

    Recent findings have demonstrated that reintegration for Veterans is often challenging. One difficult aspect of reintegration—transitioning into the civilian workplace—has not been fully explored in the literature. To address this gap and examine work reintegration, this mixed methods study examined the perspectives of Veterans with mental health disorders receiving Department of Veterans Affairs healthcare. Forty Veterans rated factors that affect work success; participants also provided narratives on their most and least successful work experiences. We used t-tests and qualitative analysis to compare participants who did and did not serve in combat. Several themes relevant to work reintegration emerged in the narratives, particularly for Veterans who served in combat. An array of work difficulties were reported in the months following military discharge. In addition, Veterans who served in combat reported significantly more work barriers than Veterans who did not serve in combat, particularly health-related barriers. In conclusion, Veterans with mental health disorders who served in combat experienced more work reintegration difficulty than their counterparts who did not serve in combat. The role of being a Veteran affected how combat Veterans formed their self-concept, which also shaped their work success and community reintegration, especially during the early transition period.

  4. A Decade’s Experience With Quality Improvement in Cardiac Surgery Using the Veterans Affairs and Society of Thoracic Surgeons National Databases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grover, Frederick L.; Shroyer, A. Laurie W.; Hammermeister, Karl; Edwards, Fred H.; Ferguson, T. Bruce; Dziuban, Stanley W.; Cleveland, Joseph C.; Clark, Richard E.; McDonald, Gerald

    2001-01-01

    Objective To review the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) national databases over the past 10 years to evaluate their relative similarities and differences, to appraise their use as quality improvement tools, and to assess their potential to facilitate improvements in quality of cardiac surgical care. Summary Background Data The VA developed a mandatory risk-adjusted database in 1987 to monitor outcomes of cardiac surgery at all VA medical centers. In 1989 the STS developed a voluntary risk-adjusted database to help members assess quality and outcomes in their individual programs and to facilitate improvements in quality of care. Methods A short data form on every veteran operated on at each VA medical center is completed and transmitted electronically for analysis of unadjusted and risk-adjusted death and complications, as well as length of stay. Masked, confidential semiannual reports are then distributed to each program’s clinical team and the associated administrator. These reports are also reviewed by a national quality oversight committee. Thus, VA data are used both locally for quality improvement and at the national level with quality surveillance. The STS dataset (217 core fields and 255 extended fields) is transmitted for each patient semiannually to the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI) for warehousing, analysis, and distribution. Site-specific reports are produced with regional and national aggregate comparisons for unadjusted and adjusted surgical deaths and complications, as well as length of stay for coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), valvular procedures, and valvular/CABG procedures. Both databases use the logistic regression modeling approach. Data for key processes of care are also captured in both databases. Research projects are frequently carried out using each database. Results More than 74,000 and 1.6 million cardiac surgical patients have been entered into the VA and STS databases

  5. Timing of Initiation of Maintenance Dialysis: A Qualitative Analysis of the Electronic Medical Records of a National Cohort of Patients From the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Susan P Y; Vig, Elizabeth K; Taylor, Janelle S; Burrows, Nilka R; Liu, Chuan-Fen; Williams, Desmond E; Hebert, Paul L; O'Hare, Ann M

    2016-02-01

    There is often considerable uncertainty about the optimal time to initiate maintenance dialysis in individual patients and little medical evidence to guide this decision. To gain a better understanding of the factors influencing the timing of initiation of dialysis in clinical practice. A qualitative analysis was conducted using the electronic medical records from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) of a national random sample of 1691 patients for whom the decision to initiate maintenance dialysis occurred in the VA between January 1, 2000, and December 31, 2009. Data analysis took place from June 1 to November 30, 2014. Central themes related to the timing of initiation of dialysis as documented in patients' electronic medical records. Of the 1691 patients, 1264 (74.7%) initiated dialysis as inpatients and 1228 (72.6%) initiated dialysis with a hemodialysis catheter. Cohort members met with a nephrologist during an outpatient clinic visit a median of 3 times (interquartile range, 0-6) in the year prior to initiation of dialysis. The mean (SD) estimated glomerular filtration rate at the time of initiation for cohort members was 10.4 (5.7) mL/min/1.73 m(2). The timing of initiation of dialysis reflected the complex interplay of at least 3 interrelated and dynamic processes. The first was physician practices, which ranged from practices intended to prepare patients for dialysis to those intended to forestall the need for dialysis by managing the signs and symptoms of uremia with medical interventions. The second process was sources of momentum. Initiation of dialysis was often precipitated by clinical events involving acute illness or medical procedures. In these settings, the imperative to treat often seemed to override patient choice. The third process was patient-physician dynamics. Interactions between patients and physicians were sometimes adversarial, and physician recommendations to initiate dialysis sometimes seemed to conflict with patient priorities

  6. The associations between organizational culture and knowledge, attitudes, and practices in a multicenter Veterans Affairs quality improvement initiative to prevent methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinkowitz-Cochran, Ronda L; Burkitt, Kelly H; Cuerdon, Timothy; Harrison, Cassandra; Gao, Shasha; Obrosky, D Scott; Jain, Rajiv; Fine, Michael J; Jernigan, John A

    2012-03-01

    Previous research demonstrates that organizational culture (OC) and knowledge, attitudes, and practices of health care personnel are associated with the overall success of infection control programs; however, little attention has been given to the relationships among these factors in contributing to the success of quality improvement programs. Cross-sectional surveys assessing OC and knowledge, attitudes, and practices related to methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) were distributed to 16 medical centers participating in a Veterans Affairs MRSA prevention initiative in 2 time periods. Factor analysis was performed on the OC survey responses, and factor scores were generated. To assess associations between OC and knowledge, attitudes, and practices of health care personnel, regression analyses were performed overall and then stratified by job type. The final analyzable sample included 2,314 surveys (43% completed by nurses, 9% by physicians, and 48% by other health care personnel). Three OC factors emerged accounting for 53% of the total variance: "Staff Engagement," "Overwhelmed/Stress-Chaos," and "Hospital Leadership." Overall, higher Staff Engagement was associated with greater knowledge scores, better hand hygiene practices, fewer reported barriers, and more positive attitudes. Higher Hospital Leadership scores were associated with better hand hygiene practices, fewer reported barriers, and more positive attitudes. Conversely, higher Overwhelmed/Stress-Chaos scores were associated with poorer reported prevention practices, more barriers, and less positive attitudes. When these associations were stratified by job type, there were significant associations between OC factors and knowledge for nurses only, between OC factors and practice items for nurses and other health care personnel, and between OC factors and the barriers and attitudes items for all job types. OC factors were not associated with knowledge and practices among physicians. Three OC

  7. Regional variations in fluoroquinolone non-susceptibility among Escherichia coli bloodstream infections within the Veterans Healthcare Administration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel J. Livorsi

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Objectives We sought to define regional variations in fluoroquinolone non-susceptibility (FQ-NS among bloodstream isolates of Escherichia coli across the Veterans Health Administration (VHA in the United States. Methods We analyzed a retrospective cohort of patients managed at 136 VHA hospitals who had a blood culture positive for E.coli between 2003 and 2013. Hospitals were classified based on US Census Divisions, and regional variations in FQ-NS were analyzed. Results Twenty-four thousand five hundred twenty-three unique E.coli bloodstream infections (BSIs were identified between 2003 and 2013. 53.9 % of these were community-acquired, 30.7 % were healthcare-associated, and 15.4 % were hospital-onset BSIs. The proportion of E.coli BSIs with FQ-NS significantly varied across US Census Divisions (p < 0.001. During 2003–2013, the proportion of E.coli BSIs with FQ-NS was highest in the West South-Central Division (32.7 % and lowest in the Mountain Division (20.0 %. Multivariable analysis showed that there were universal secular trends towards higher FQ-NS rates (p < 0.001 with significant variability of slopes across US Census Divisions (p < 0.001. Conclusion There has been a universal increase in FQ-NS among E.coli BSIs within VHA, but the rate of increase has significantly varied across Census Divisions. The reasons for this variability are unclear. These findings reinforce the importance of using local data to develop and update local antibiograms and antibiotic-prescribing guidelines.

  8. 75 FR 24514 - Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-05

    ... eligible homeless veterans, such as the Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) Program, the Grant and Per... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 62 RIN 2900-AN53 Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program AGENCY: Department... concerning the Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program (SSVF Program) of the Department of Veterans...

  9. 38 CFR 3.454 - Veterans disability pension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Veterans disability pension. 3.454 Section 3.454 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS ADJUDICATION Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Apportionments § 3.454 Veterans...

  10. Serving homeless veterans in the VA Desert Pacific Healthcare Network: a needs assessment to inform quality improvement endeavors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabrielian, Sonya; Yuan, Anita; Rubenstein, Lisa; Andersen, Ronald M; Gelberg, Lillian

    2013-08-01

    This report describes a needs assessment of VA programs for homeless Veterans in Southern California and Nevada, the geographic region with the most homeless Veterans in the nation. The assessment was formulated through key informant interviews. Current service provisions are discussed, along with salient unmet needs for this vulnerable population.

  11. Serving homeless Veterans in the VA Desert Pacific Healthcare Network: A needs assessment to inform quality improvement endeavors

    OpenAIRE

    Gabrielian, Sonya; Yuan, Anita; Rubenstein, Lisa; Andersen, Ronald M.; Gelberg, Lillian

    2013-01-01

    This report describes a needs assessment of VA programs for homeless Veterans in Southern California and Nevada, the geographic region with the most homeless Veterans in the nation. The assessment was formulated through key informant interviews. Current service provisions are discussed, along with salient unmet needs for this vulnerable population.

  12. Sexual assault during the time of Gulf War I: a cross-sectional survey of U.S. service men who later applied for Department of Veterans Affairs PTSD disability benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdoch, Maureen; Polusny, Melissa A; Street, Amy; Noorbaloochi, Siamak; Simon, Alisha B; Bangerter, Ann; Grill, Joseph; Voller, Emily

    2014-03-01

    To estimate the cumulative incidence of sexual assault during the time of Gulf War I among male Gulf War I Veterans who later applied for Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) post-traumatic stress disorder disability benefits and to identify potential risk and protective factors for sexual assault within the population. Mailed, national, cross-sectional survey supplemented with VA administrative and clinical data. Of 2,415 Veterans sampled, 1,700 (70%) responded. After adjusting for nonignorable missing data, the cumulative incidence of sexual assault during Gulf War I in this population ranged from 18% [95% confidence intervals (CI): 5.0%-51.9%] to 21% (95% CI: 20.0-22.0). Deployment was not associated with sexual assault [Odds Ratio (OR), 0.96; 95% CI: 0.75-1.23], but combat exposure was (OR, 1.80; 95% CI: 1.52-2.10). Other correlates of sexual assault within the population included working in a unit with greater tolerance of sexual harassment (OR, 1.80; 95% CI: 1.52-2.10) and being exposed to more sexual identity challenges (OR, 1.76; 95% CI: 1.55-2.00). The 9-month cumulative incidence of sexual assault in this particular population exceeded the lifetime cumulative incidence of sexual assault in U.S. civilian women. Although Persian Gulf deployment was not associated with sexual assault in this population, combat exposure was. Reprint & Copyright © 2014 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  13. Mistrust and Endorsement of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Conspiracy Theories Among Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected African American Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattocks, Kristin M; Gibert, Cynthia; Fiellin, David; Fiellin, Lynn E; Jamison, Annah; Brown, Amber; Justice, Amy C

    2017-11-01

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has taken a disproportionate toll on the lives of African Americans, and many previous studies suggest HIV conspiracy beliefs and physician mistrust play important roles in this racial disparity. Because many HIV conspiracy theories tie government involvement with the origin and potential cure for HIV, an area for further examination is HIV+ African American veterans in Veterans Health Administration (VHA) care. In addition to HIV conspiracy beliefs, veterans may already be mistrustful of the VHA as a government healthcare provider. This mistrust is significantly associated with poor health outcomes, among both minority and nonminority persons living with HIV. We conducted interviews with 32 African American veterans at three VHA hospitals to assess HIV conspiracy beliefs and mistrust in physicians providing HIV care. A semistructured interview format allowed respondents to talk freely about their personal history with HIV, their perceptions about living with HIV, and their views on HIV conspiracy beliefs. Five major themes arose from these interviews, including that the government uses HIV to control minority populations; the Veterans Affairs healthcare providers may play a role in withholding HIV treatment, and many HIV-infected veterans are suspicious of HIV treatment regimens. Additionally, several HIV-infected veterans in our study disclosed that they did not follow the prescribed treatment recommendations to ensure adherence. A veteran's beliefs drive views of the healthcare system and trust of HIV-infected veterans' healthcare providers, and impact HIV-infected veterans' willingness to accept treatment for their medical conditions. Further research should continue to examine the impact of mistrust and endorsement of conspiracy beliefs among veterans receiving care in VHA. Reprint & Copyright © 2017 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  14. Developing programs for homeless veterans: understanding driving forces in implementation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakashima, John; McGuire, Jim; Berman, Stephen; Daniels, William

    2004-01-01

    Between 1992 and 2003, services for homeless veterans at the Veterans Affairs Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System went from inappropriate utilization of hospital medical and psychiatric beds, to a continuum of residential treatment, transitional housing, and employment programs through arrangements with private agencies. The authors use elements of Hasenfeld and Brock's Political Economy Model (1991) to explain this transformation in service delivery that was spearheaded by a VA social work leadership team. It is argued that three driving forces crucial to program implementation were present: technological certainty, economic stability, and concentration of power. Evidence of the implementation's impact includes creation of new homeless program beds, a reduction in use of medical/psychiatric beds, and a large number of formerly homeless veterans with housing and employment at program discharge. Study limitations and implications for future studies are discussed.

  15. VeteranOtherInformationService

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This service is used to create, read, delete and update additional information captured during the EVSS Disability Compensation interview in an effort to align with...

  16. Foot care education and self management behaviors in diverse veterans with diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan M Olson

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Jonathan M Olson1, Molly T Hogan2, Leonard M Pogach3, Mangala Rajan3, Gregory J Raugi4, Gayle E Reiber51University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA, USA; 2Department of Internal Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA, USA; 3Department of Veterans Affairs, New Jersey Healthcare System, Center for Healthcare Knowledge Management, East Orange, NJ, USA; 4Division of Dermatology, VA Puget Sound Healthcare System, Department of Veterans Affairs, Seattle, WA, USA; 5Research and Development, VA Puget Sound Healthcare System, Department of Veterans Affairs, Seattle, WA, USAAbstract: The objective of this study was to examine differences in self-reported diabetes foot care education, self management behaviors, and barriers to good foot care among veterans with diabetes by race and ethnicity. Data was collected using the Veterans Health Administration Footcare Survey, a validated tool that assessed demographic, general health, diabetes and foot self-care information, barriers to foot self-care, receipt of professional foot care, and satisfaction with current care. We mailed surveys to a random sample of patients with diabetes from eight VA medical centers. Study participants were 81% White; 13% African American; 4% Asian, and 2% American Indian and Pacific Islanders. The majority of respondents felt that they did not know enough about foot self-care. There were large gaps between self-reported knowledge and actual foot care practices, even among those who reported “knowing enough” on a given topic. There were significant differences in self-reported foot care behaviors and education by race and ethnicity. These findings document the need for culturally-specific self-management education to address unique cultural preferences and barriers to care.Keywords: diabetes mellitus, diabetic foot, patient self-management, ethnic groups, education

  17. Accessing VA Healthcare During Large-Scale Natural Disasters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Der-Martirosian, Claudia; Pinnock, Laura; Dobalian, Aram

    2017-01-01

    Natural disasters can lead to the closure of medical facilities including the Veterans Affairs (VA), thus impacting access to healthcare for U.S. military veteran VA users. We examined the characteristics of VA patients who reported having difficulty accessing care if their usual source of VA care was closed because of natural disasters. A total of 2,264 veteran VA users living in the U.S. northeast region participated in a 2015 cross-sectional representative survey. The study used VA administrative data in a complex stratified survey design with a multimode approach. A total of 36% of veteran VA users reported having difficulty accessing care elsewhere, negatively impacting the functionally impaired and lower income VA patients.

  18. America's Women Veterans: Military Service History and VA Benefit Utilization Statistics

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This comprehensive report chronicles the history of women in the military and as Veterans, profiles the characteristics of women Veterans in 2009, illustrates how...

  19. 78 FR 36829 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement) Activity: Comment...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-06-19

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement) Activity: Comment... solicits comments for information needed to decline Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance. DATES: Written... techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance...

  20. 76 FR 24571 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Inquiry); Comment Request

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-02

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Inquiry); Comment Request AGENCY... information needed to maintain Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance accounts. DATES: Written comments and... techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance...

  1. 77 FR 20886 - Agency Information Collection (Conversion From Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance to Veterans...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-06

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Conversion From Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance to Veterans' Group Life Insurance); Activity Under OMB Review AGENCY: Veterans Benefits Administration, Department of... Evaluation of the Conversion Privilege from Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance (SGLI) to Veterans' Group...

  2. Employment of Veterans in the Federal Executive Branch: Fiscal Year (FY) 2008 to 2013

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This chart summarizes Veteran employment in the federal government using data from the Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) report, Employment of Veterans in the...

  3. 78 FR 57457 - Notice of Funds Availability Inviting Applications for Grants for Transportation of Veterans in...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-18

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS Notice of Funds Availability Inviting Applications for Grants for Transportation of Veterans in... Wallace, National Coordinator, Highly Rural Transportation Grants, Veterans Transportation Program, Chief...

  4. 76 FR 72243 - Proposed Information Collection (Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-22

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Operation Enduring Freedom/ Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans... facilities for returning Operation Enduring Freedom/ Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans and their families.... Title: Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans Health Needs Assessment, VA Form 10...

  5. 78 FR 6405 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-30

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA... Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held on February 13-15, 2013. On February 13, the Committee will meet... Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall assemble and review information relating to...

  6. 76 FR 56881 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-14

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA... Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held on September 20- 21, 2011. On September 20, the Committee will... services of the Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall assemble and review...

  7. 78 FR 53820 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-30

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA... Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held on September 11- 13, 2013, in the William Phillip King Room at..., organizational structures, and services of the Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall...

  8. 75 FR 4453 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-27

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA... Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held February 24-26, 2010, in the Lafayette Park Room at the Hamilton... services of the Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall assemble and review...

  9. 76 FR 24087 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-04-29

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA... Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held May 18-20, 2011, in the Harbor View Room at the Best Western Bay... services of the Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall assemble and review...

  10. 75 FR 39333 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-08

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... health care issues affecting enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas. The Committee examines programs and policies that impact the provision of VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas...

  11. Multiclonal methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) outbreak and its control after use of the Veterans Affairs (VA) MRSA bundle in a VA long-term care facility, 2004-2014.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Risa M; Denton, Carmelita; Spruill, Emily; Henson, Gay; Bruce, Lisa; Woods, Gail L; Swiatlo, Andrea; Walker, Erica D; Peel, Chere; Sullivan, Donna

    2016-06-01

    A multiclonal methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) outbreak with 91 infections occurred in our Veterans Affairs (VA) community living center over 46 months. Both similar and unique strains were shown by repetitive polymerase chain reaction to contribute to the outbreak, including 1 strain causing infections over a 33-month period. Most infections were soft tissue infections (67%). For 21 months after the initiation of the VA MRSA bundle, no infections were identified, and low rates of infection have been sustained an additional 4 years. The average annual rate of MRSA infection decreased by 62% (P < .001) from 0.6 per 1,000 resident days for 4 years prior to the bundle implementation to 0.09 per 1,000 resident days for 4 years after the bundle implementation. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  12. Patient-Centered Pain Care Using Artificial Intelligence and Mobile Health Tools: Protocol for a Randomized Study Funded by the US Department of Veterans Affairs Health Services Research and Development Program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piette, John D; Krein, Sarah L; Striplin, Dana; Marinec, Nicolle; Kerns, Robert D; Farris, Karen B; Singh, Satinder; An, Lawrence; Heapy, Alicia A

    2016-04-07

    Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is one of the most effective treatments for chronic low back pain. However, only half of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) patients have access to trained CBT therapists, and program expansion is costly. CBT typically consists of 10 weekly hour-long sessions. However, some patients improve after the first few sessions while others need more extensive contact. We are applying principles from "reinforcement learning" (a field of artificial intelligence or AI) to develop an evidence-based, personalized CBT pain management service that automatically adapts to each patient's unique and changing needs (AI-CBT). AI-CBT uses feedback from patients about their progress in pain-related functioning measured daily via pedometer step counts to automatically personalize the intensity and type of patient support. The specific aims of the study are to (1) demonstrate that AI-CBT has pain-related outcomes equivalent to standard telephone CBT, (2) document that AI-CBT achieves these outcomes with more efficient use of clinician resources, and (3) demonstrate the intervention's impact on proximal outcomes associated with treatment response, including program engagement, pain management skill acquisition, and patients' likelihood of dropout. In total, 320 patients with chronic low back pain will be recruited from 2 VA healthcare systems and randomized to a standard 10 sessions of telephone CBT versus AI-CBT. All patients will begin with weekly hour-long telephone counseling, but for patients in the AI-CBT group, those who demonstrate a significant treatment response will be stepped down through less resource-intensive alternatives including: (1) 15-minute contacts with a therapist, and (2) CBT clinician feedback provided via interactive voice response calls (IVR). The AI engine will learn what works best in terms of patients' personally tailored treatment plans based on daily feedback via IVR about their pedometer-measured step counts, CBT skill

  13. 2015 Veteran Economic Opportunity Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    and data analysis to the VBA and stakeholders. PA&I developed the VBA Enterprise Data Warehouse to enable the generation of recurring and ad hoc...reports in response to VBA decision-making and business needs. PA&I will be a primary source of information on Veteran education, vocational...Servicemembers UI Unemployment Insurance URL Uniform Resource Locator USB Under Secretary for Benefits VA Department of Veterans Affairs VBA Veterans

  14. Healthcare

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carnevale, Anthony P.; Smith, Nicole; Gulish, Artem; Beach, Bennett H.

    2012-01-01

    This report, provides detailed analyses and projections of occupations in healthcare fields, and wages earned. In addition, the important skills and work values associated with workers in those fields of healthcare are discussed. Finally, the authors analyze the implications of research findings for the racial, ethnic, and class diversity of the…

  15. Conflicts of interests in the area of healthcare products and technology. Current state of affairs and recommendations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demarez, Jean-Paul; Funck-Brentano, Christian; Molimard, Mathieu

    2012-01-01

    The handling of conflicts of interest in the area of healthcare products and technology has become a major issue for all of those involved in healthcare. Round Table N°4 at the Giens Workshops 2011 has put forward concrete proposals to clarify and optimise the handling of conflicts of interest. Conflicts of interest cannot be defined by the individuals consulted or applying for funds since each institution, whether public or private, that puts out a call for projects or that requests advice, analyses or expert testimony in the healthcare field has different degrees of what it defines as a conflict of interest, depending on the context of the proposal or specific request that it puts out. In contrast, each individual has ties of personal interest that can and must be openly disclosed. The ties are much more diverse than what is commonly found in the conflict of interest statements of large institutions operating in the healthcare field and are not limited to financial and operational ties between companies and individuals. In addition, the statements are difficult to manage because of their sheer number. The Round Table recommends that each individual should openly disclose all of his or her ties of personal interest in a Single Statement of Ties of personal Interest (SSTI). The SSTI would be updated regularly and accessible on line. Each institution could then determine whether or not the reported ties represent a conflict in the context of the mission proposed. Each institution could publish in advance the conditions that would give rise to a conflict and, in this way, an individual could refrain from applying for the mission. Other practical approaches to handling conflicts of interest were put forward. © 2012 Société Française de Pharmacologie et de Thérapeutique.

  16. Comparison of Nutrition Profile and Diet Record Between Veteran and Nonveteran End-Stage Renal Disease Patients Receiving Hemodialysis in Veterans Affairs and Community Clinics in Metropolitan South-Central Texas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunningham, Sue E D; Verkaik, Darlene; Gross, Georgiana; Khazim, Khalid; Hirachan, Padam; Agarwal, Gurav; Lorenzo, Carlos; Matteucci, Elena; Bansal, Shweta; Fanti, Paolo

    2015-10-01

    U.S. military veterans have high rates of chronic disease and social disadvantage, which are risk factors for protein-energy wasting (PEW). It is not known whether this translates into high prevalence of PEW in veterans with end-stage renal disease. We compared the clinical, socioeconomic, and nutrition status and the diet of 33 veteran and 38 nonveteran clinically stable patients receiving maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) in south-central Texas. The whole cohort included 82% Mexican Americans (MAs), 72% type 2 diabetics, and 73% males. The body mass index was 28.9 ± 6.2, while energy intake was 21.5 ± 8.2 kcal/kg/d and protein intake was 1.0 ± 0.4 g/kg/d. Serum albumin (bromocresol purple) was 3.5 ± 0.4 g/dL, transferrin was 171.9 ± 27.8 mg/d, C-reactive protein was 2.9 (1.4-6.5) mg/L, interleukin-6 (IL-6) was 8.3 (4.2-17.9) pg/mL, neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin was 729 (552-1256) ng/mL, and the malnutrition-inflammation score was 8.8 ± 3.0. In group comparison that adjusted for sex and ethnicity, the veterans had better household income, less MAs (60% vs 100%), more males (94% vs 55%), more use of a renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system blockade (66% vs 33%), and lower IL-6 levels (4.4 [3.1-5.8] vs 15.4 [8.3-20.5] pg/mL; P = .01) than nonveterans. In regression analysis, the lower serum IL-6 level in veterans was independently explained by dialysis clinic, sex, and, possibly, household income (intermediate significance). In a relatively small cohort of clinically stable MHD patients, the veterans showed equivalent nutrition status and dietary intake and less inflammation than the nonveterans, thus not supporting the possibility that veteran MHD patients may have worse nutrition than the nonveteran counterpart. © 2015 American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition.

  17. Addressing the Needs of Transgender Military Veterans: Better Access and More Comprehensive Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietert, Michelle; Dentice, Dianne; Keig, Zander

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: There is a gap in social science literature addressing issues of access and quality of care for transgender military veterans. Psychologists, medical doctors, and other health professionals are beginning to address some of the barriers present in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system that affect veterans who are also transgender and intersex. Over a 7-year period, between 2006 and 2013, 2600 transgender veterans were served by the VA. Data from several surveys revealed that most transgender veterans perceive the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) to be less than accommodating for their special needs. The goal of this study was to investigate the experiences of a sample of transgender veterans with regard to their experiences with healthcare services provided by the VHA. Methods: Using snowball sampling techniques, we were able to recruit 22 transgender military veterans to participate in our study. A combination of telephone interviews and questionnaires provided data from veterans in various branches of the military throughout the United States. Results: Findings indicate that even though the VHA is working to address issues of inequality for transgender veterans, our participants indicated that there are still some problems with administration of care, proper training of staff and physicians, and availability of comprehensive services for the unique healthcare needs of transgender individuals. Conclusion: Since our data were collected, the VA has worked to bridge the gap by focusing on increased training for VHA providers and staff and establishing LGBT programs at VA facilities. However, we suggest that one key area of importance should continue to focus on how mental health and medical providers and ancillary staff are trained to interact with and provide care for their transgender patients.

  18. 38 CFR 21.400 - Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Committee on Rehabilitation. 21.400 Section 21.400 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS (CONTINUED) VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION AND EDUCATION Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Under 38 U.S.C. Chapter 31 Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation § 21.400 Veterans...

  19. Induced abortion among women veterans: data from the ECUUN study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwarz, Eleanor Bimla; Sileanu, Florentina E; Zhao, Xinhua; Mor, Maria K; Callegari, Lisa S; Borrero, Sonya

    2018-01-01

    We compared rates of induced abortion among women veterans receiving Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare to rates in the general US population, as current policy prohibits VA provision of abortion counseling or services even when pregnancy endangers a veteran's life. We analyzed data from 2298 women veterans younger than 45 years who completed a telephone-based, cross-sectional survey of randomly sampled English-speaking women from across the United States who had received VA healthcare. We compared lifetime, last-5-year and last-year rates of unintended pregnancy and abortion among participants to age-matched data from the National Survey of Family Growth. As few abortions were reported in the last year, we used multivariable logistic regression to examine associations between abortion in the last 5 years and age, race/ethnicity, income, education, religion, marital status, parity, geography, deployment history, housing instability, and past medical and mental health among VA patients. Women veterans were more likely than matched US women to report ever having an abortion [17.7%, 95% confidence interval (CI): 16.1%-19.3% vs. 15.2% of US women]. In the last 5 years, unintended pregnancy and abortion were reported by veterans at rates similar to US women. In multivariable models, VA patients were more likely to report abortion in the last 5 years if their annual income was less than $40,000 (adjusted odds ratio (OR) 2.95, 95% CI 1.30-6.70), they had experienced homelessness or housing instability (adjusted OR 1.91, 95% CI 1.01-3.62), they were single (adj. OR 2.46, 95% CI 1.23-4.91) and/or they had given birth (adjusted OR 2.29, 95% CI 1.19-4.40). Women veterans face unintended pregnancy and seek abortion as often as the larger US population. The Veterans Health Care Act, which prohibits provision of abortion services, increases vulnerable veterans' out-of-pocket healthcare costs and limits veterans' reproductive freedom. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  20. The impact of Agent Orange exposure on prognosis and management in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia: a National Veteran Affairs Tumor Registry Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mescher, Craig; Gilbertson, David; Randall, Nicole M; Tarchand, Gobind; Tomaska, Julie; Baumann Kreuziger, Lisa; Morrison, Vicki A

    2017-09-14

    Exposure to Agent Orange (AO) has been associated with the development of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). We performed a retrospective study of 2052 Vietnam veterans identified in the National VA Tumor Registry to assess the impact of AO exposure on CLL prognosis, treatment and survival. Prognostic factors did not differ based on exposure. Veterans exposed to AO were diagnosed younger (63.2 vs. 70.5 years, p < .0001) and had longer overall survival (median not reached vs. 91 months, p < .001). This prolonged survival was in the subgroups of patients aged 60-69 years (p< .0001) and those with 11q deletion (p < .0001). Those exposed to AO were more likely to be treated with fludarabine, chlorambucil and rituximab (38 vs. 21%, p < .001) and bendamustine plus rituximab (25 vs. 18%, p = 0.039) as first line therapy. Exposure to AO was not associated with either poor prognostic factors or shortened overall survival in our large veteran population with CLL.

  1. The role of military social support in understanding the relationship between PTSD, physical health, and healthcare utilization in women veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehavot, Keren; Der-Martirosian, Claudia; Simpson, Tracy L; Shipherd, Jillian C; Washington, Donna L

    2013-12-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a significant predictor of both poorer physical health and increased health care utilization, whereas adequate social support is associated with better physical health and less health care utilization. However, research has not previously examined the simultaneous effects of PTSD and social support on health and health care utilization. This study examined both the independent and interactive effects of PTSD and a particular type of social support (postactive-duty social support from military friends) on self-reported physical health and number of Veterans Health Administration (VHA) visits in the last year. These relationships were examined in a representative, national sample of 3,524 women veterans who completed telephone interviews as part of the National Survey of Women Veterans in 2008-2009. Regression analyses were conducted using these cross-sectional data to examine main effects of PTSD and military social support on physical health and VHA utilization and their interaction. Screening positive for PTSD was associated with poorer health (B = -3.19, SE = 1.47) and increased VHA utilization (B = 0.98, SE = 0.16), whereas greater military social support was associated with better health (B = 0.97, SE = 0.44) and less frequent VHA utilization (B = -0.15, SE = 0.05). Neither moderation model was significant, such that military social support behaved in a similar way regardless of PTSD status. Published 2013. This article is a US Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  2. Health care for homeless veterans. Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-23

    This final rule establishes regulations for contracting with community-based treatment facilities in the Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The HCHV program assists certain homeless veterans in obtaining treatment from non-VA community-based providers. The final rule formalizes VA's policies and procedures in connection with this program and clarifies that veterans with substance use disorders may qualify for the program.

  3. Veterans Benefits: Burial Benefits and National Cemeteries

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-18

    hospital, nursing home, or domiciliary care facility; and (2) a plot allowance for a veteran eligible for burial in a national cemetery who is not... domiciliary care . The VA was permitted to enter into contracts to provide the burial and funeral services for veterans who died in VA facilities...Veterans Affairs (VA) provides a range of benefits and services to veterans who meet certain eligibility rules; benefits include hospital and medical care

  4. Effects of hospital procedure volume and resident training on clinical outcomes and resource use in radical retropubic prostatectomy surgery in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ku, Tse-Sun; Kane, Christopher J; Sen, Saunak; Henderson, William G; Dudley, R Adams; Cason, Brian A

    2008-01-01

    In this retrospective cohort study we used data from the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program of the Veterans Health Administration to examine the effect of case volume and resident participation on radical retropubic prostatectomy outcomes. The study population included 5,736 patients who underwent radical retropubic prostatectomy in Veterans Administration hospitals between October 1, 2001 and September 30, 2004. Resource related outcomes included operative times and length of stay. Clinical outcomes included blood transfusion, complications, readmissions and reoperations. Hierarchical multivariate regression models were developed to predict outcomes. Risk adjustment was performed using patient chronic health factors and results of preoperative laboratory testing. A total of 5,070 radical retropubic prostatectomy surgeries met inclusion criteria. After adjustment for case mix, academic training institutions had longer operative times (3.2 vs 2.4 hours, p <0.01) but shorter length of stay (3.4 vs 4.2 days, p <0.01). Surgery at academic institutions was not associated with greater risk of transfusion (p = 0.36), reoperation (p = 0.93), complications (p = 0.53) or readmissions (p = 0.97). However, among the academic institutions low vs high hospital radical retropubic prostatectomy volume was associated with longer length of stay (3.7 vs 3.1 days, p = 0.02) and higher transfusion rate (29.6% vs 18.2%, p = 0.02). Substantial clustering of outcomes at the hospital level was observed. Within the Veterans Administration system academic training institutions have longer operative times for radical retropubic prostatectomy, but shorter length of stay. Among the same institutions, high volume hospitals tend to have lower transfusion rates and shorter length of stay. Clustering of outcomes at the hospital level suggests that unmeasured institutional factors are key determinants of clinical and resource related outcomes.

  5. Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) polymorphism A1298C (Glu429Ala) predicts decline in renal function over time in the African-American Study of Kidney Disease and Hypertension (AASK) Trial and Veterans Affairs Hypertension Cohort (VAHC).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fung, Maple M; Salem, Rany M; Lipkowitz, Michael S; Bhatnagar, Vibha; Pandey, Braj; Schork, Nicholas J; O'Connor, Daniel T

    2012-01-01

    Hyperhomocysteinemia is associated with increased venous thrombosis and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Mutations in the human methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene have been associated with increased homocysteine levels and risks of CVD in various populations including those with kidney disease. Here, we evaluated the influence of MTHFR variants on progressive loss of kidney function. We analyzed 821 subjects with hypertensive nephrosclerosis from the longitudinal National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases African-American Study of Kidney Disease and Hypertension (AASK) Trial to determine whether decline in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) over ∼4.2 years was predicted by common genetic variation within MTHFR at non-synonymous positions C677T (Ala222Val) and A1298C (Glu429Ala) or by MTHFR haplotypes. The effect on GFR decline was then supported by a study of 1333 subjects from the San Diego Veterans Affairs Hypertension Cohort (VAHC), followed over ∼4.5 years. Linear effect models were utilized to determine both genotype [single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)] and genotype (SNP)-by-time interactions. In AASK, the polymorphism at A1298C predicted the rate of GFR decline: A1298/A1298 major allele homozygosity resulted in a less pronounced decline of GFR, with a significant SNP-by-time interaction. An independent follow-up study in the San Diego VAHC subjects supports that A1298/A1298 homozygotes have the greatest estimated GFR throughout the study. Haplotype analysis with C677T yielded concurring results. We conclude that the MTHFR-coding polymorphism at A1298C is associated with renal decline in African-Americans with hypertensive nephrosclerosis and is supported by a veteran cohort with a primary care diagnosis of hypertension. Further investigation is needed to confirm such findings and to determine what molecular mechanism may contribute to this association.

  6. Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) polymorphism A1298C (Glu429Ala) predicts decline in renal function over time in the African-American Study of Kidney Disease and Hypertension (AASK) Trial and Veterans Affairs Hypertension Cohort (VAHC)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salem, Rany M.; Lipkowitz, Michael S.; Bhatnagar, Vibha; Pandey, Braj; Schork, Nicholas J.; O’Connor, Daniel T.

    2012-01-01

    Background. Hyperhomocysteinemia is associated with increased venous thrombosis and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Mutations in the human methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene have been associated with increased homocysteine levels and risks of CVD in various populations including those with kidney disease. Here, we evaluated the influence of MTHFR variants on progressive loss of kidney function. Methods. We analyzed 821 subjects with hypertensive nephrosclerosis from the longitudinal National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases African-American Study of Kidney Disease and Hypertension (AASK) Trial to determine whether decline in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) over ∼4.2 years was predicted by common genetic variation within MTHFR at non-synonymous positions C677T (Ala222Val) and A1298C (Glu429Ala) or by MTHFR haplotypes. The effect on GFR decline was then supported by a study of 1333 subjects from the San Diego Veterans Affairs Hypertension Cohort (VAHC), followed over ∼4.5 years. Linear effect models were utilized to determine both genotype [single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)] and genotype (SNP)-by-time interactions. Results. In AASK, the polymorphism at A1298C predicted the rate of GFR decline: A1298/A1298 major allele homozygosity resulted in a less pronounced decline of GFR, with a significant SNP-by-time interaction. An independent follow-up study in the San Diego VAHC subjects supports that A1298/A1298 homozygotes have the greatest estimated GFR throughout the study. Haplotype analysis with C677T yielded concurring results. Conclusion. We conclude that the MTHFR-coding polymorphism at A1298C is associated with renal decline in African-Americans with hypertensive nephrosclerosis and is supported by a veteran cohort with a primary care diagnosis of hypertension. Further investigation is needed to confirm such findings and to determine what molecular mechanism may contribute to this association. PMID:21613384

  7. The department of veterans affairs nutritional status classification scheme allows for rapid assessment of nutritional status prior to autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation and identifies patients at high risk of transplant-related complications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toro, Juan J; Haile, David J; Chao, Ju-Hsien; Schneider, Deanna; Jewell, Pamela S; Lee, Shuko; Freytes, César O

    2009-09-01

    The nutritional assessment of patients prior to autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation (APBSCT) is labor intensive. A simple method of nutritional assessment prior to APSCT would be extremely helpful, especially if this method could identify patients at high risk of transplant-related complications. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) developed a Nutritional Status Classification Scheme (NSCS) to identify nutritionally compromised inpatients rapidly and reliably. The objective of this study was to determine if the use of the VA-NSCS could be utilized as a tool for the evaluation of patients prior to APBSCT and to determine if this tool could be used to identify patients at high risk of transplant-related complications. The nutritional status of 128 patients who underwent APBSCT was assessed by a registered dietician, utilizing the VA-NSCS, upon admission to the hospital and prior to conditioning regimen. Patients with moderately compromised nutritional status pretransplantation experienced a higher incidence of infections, longer duration of diarrhea, and longer length of hospital stay when compared to patients with normal or mildly compromised nutritional status. Our study demonstrates that the VA-NSCS, a simple and inexpensive tool to assess nutritional status, was useful in determining the pretransplant nutritional status of patients with lymphogenous malignancies who underwent APBSCT. In addition, this method was able to identify patients at a higher risk of posttransplant complications. Future studies should be undertaken to determine the optimal method for the nutritional assessment of autologous stem cell transplant candidates.

  8. Higher Education Benefits for Post-9/11 Military Service Members and Veterans. Testimony. CT-428

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez, Gabriella C.; Miller, Laura L.; Buryk, Peter; Wenger, Jennie W.

    2015-01-01

    This testimony was presented before the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity on March 17, 2015. To inform the Subcommittee hearing on the Department of Veterans Affairs' administration of its education programs, and the educational and training needs of post-9/11 veterans, the presenters offered the statement in…

  9. 78 FR 48543 - Veterans Health Administration Fund Availability Under the VA's Homeless Providers Grant and Per...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-08

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans Health Administration Fund Availability Under the VA's Homeless Providers Grant and Per... continue to deliver services to the homeless Special Need veteran population as outlined in their FY 2009.... Quarles, Director, VA's Homeless Providers GPD Program, Department of Veterans Affairs, 10770 N. 46th...

  10. 77 FR 37839 - Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) No-Health Period Extension

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-25

    ... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 9 RIN 2900-AO24 Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) No-Health Period Extension... Affairs (VA) proposes to amend its regulations governing eligibility for Veterans' Group Life Insurance... indicate that they are submitted in response to ``RIN 2900-AO24--Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) No...

  11. 38 CFR 1.575 - Social security numbers in veterans' benefits matters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Social security numbers... Affairs Records § 1.575 Social security numbers in veterans' benefits matters. (a) Except as provided in... because of refusal to disclose to the Department of Veterans Affairs a social security number. (b) VA...

  12. 77 FR 58913 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-24

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... provision of VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas, and discusses ways to improve and... Office of Rural Health (ORH) Telehealth Projects funded; Louis A. Johnson Medical Center Women's Health...

  13. 77 FR 30593 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-05-23

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... Friday, June 22, 2012, in Room GL20 of the Office of Rural Health (ORH), 1722 I Street NW., Washington... on health care issues affecting enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas. The Committee examines...

  14. 77 FR 77185 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-12-31

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee, Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... Tuesday, January ] 29, 2013, in Room GL20 of the Office of Rural Health (ORH), 1722 I Street, NW... on health care issues affecting enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas. The Committee examines...

  15. 76 FR 60965 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-30

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas, and discusses ways to improve and...HealthyVet; and Office of Rural Health. In the afternoon, the Committee ] will receive a briefing on the...

  16. 76 FR 44091 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-22

    ... AFFAIRS Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The...) that the Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee will conduct a teleconference call meeting on Tuesday, August 2, 2011, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., in Room GL20 of the Office of Rural Health, 1722 I Street...

  17. 75 FR 61574 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-05

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... policies that impact the provision of VA health care to enrolled Veterans residing in rural areas, and... Committee will hear from its Chairman, ] the Director of the VA Office of Rural Health and the VA Under...

  18. Patient engagement in the process of planning and designing outpatient care improvements at the Veterans Administration Health-care System: findings from an online expert panel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khodyakov, Dmitry; Stockdale, Susan E; Smith, Nina; Booth, Marika; Altman, Lisa; Rubenstein, Lisa V

    2017-02-01

    There is a strong interest in the Veterans Administration (VA) Health-care System in promoting patient engagement to improve patient care. We solicited expert opinion using an online expert panel system with a modified Delphi structure called ExpertLens™ . Experts reviewed, rated and discussed eight scenarios, representing four patient engagement roles in designing and improving VA outpatient care (consultant, implementation advisor, equal stakeholder and lead stakeholder) and two VA levels (local and regional). Rating criteria included desirability, feasibility, patient ability, physician/staff acceptance and impact on patient-centredness and care quality. Data were analysed using the RAND/UCLA Appropriateness Method for determining consensus. Experts rated consulting with patients at the local level as the most desirable and feasible patient engagement approach. Engagement at the local level was considered more desirable than engagement at the regional level. Being an equal stakeholder at the local level received the highest ratings on the patient-centredness and health-care quality criteria. Our findings illustrate expert opinion about different approaches to patient engagement and highlight the benefits and challenges posed by each. Although experts rated local consultations with patients on an as-needed basis as most desirable and feasible, they rated being an equal stakeholder at the local level as having the highest potential impact on patient-centredness and care quality. This result highlights a perceived discrepancy between what is most desirable and what is potentially most effective, but suggests that routine local engagement of patients as equal stakeholders may be a desirable first step for promoting high-quality, patient-centred care. © 2016 The Authors. Health Expectations Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Male partner reproductive coercion among women veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenfeld, Elian A; Miller, Elizabeth; Zhao, Xinhua; Sileanu, Florentina E; Mor, Maria K; Borrero, Sonya

    2017-10-19

    Male partner reproductive coercion is defined as male partners' attempts to promote pregnancy through interference with women's contraceptive behaviors and reproductive decision-making. Male partners may try to promote pregnancy through birth control sabotage such as taking away or destroying their partners' contraceptives, refusing to wear condoms, and/or verbally pressuring their partners to abstain from contraceptive use. Reproductive coercion is associated with an elevated risk for unintended pregnancy. Women who experience intimate partner violence, who are in racial/ethnic minorities, and who are of lower socioeconomic status are more likely to experience reproductive coercion. Women veterans who use Veterans Affairs for health care may be particularly vulnerable to reproductive coercion because they are disproportionally from racial/ethnic minority groups and experience high rates of intimate partner violence. We sought to examine the prevalence, correlates, and impact of reproductive coercion among women veterans who are served by the Veterans Affairs healthcare system. We analyzed data from a national telephone survey of women veterans aged 18-44 years, with no history of sterilization or hysterectomy, who had received care within the Veterans Affairs system in the previous 12 months. Participants who had sex with men in the last year were asked if they experienced male partner reproductive coercion. Adjusted logistic regression was used to examine the relationship between participant characteristics and male partner reproductive coercion and the relationship between reproductive coercion and the outcomes of contraceptive method used at last sex and pregnancy and unintended pregnancy in the last year. Among the 1241 women veterans in our study cohort, 11% reported experiencing male partner reproductive coercion in the past year. Black women, younger women, and single women were more likely to report reproductive coercion than their white, older, and

  20. Remote eye care screening for rural veterans with Technology-based Eye Care Services: a quality improvement project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maa, April Y; Wojciechowski, Barbara; Hunt, Kelly; Dismuke, Clara; Janjua, Rabeea; Lynch, Mary G

    2017-01-01

    Veterans are at high risk for eye disease because of age and comorbid conditions. Access to eye care is challenging within the entire Veterans Hospital Administration's network of hospitals and clinics in the USA because it is the third busiest outpatient clinical service and growing at a rate of 9% per year. Rural and highly rural veterans face many more barriers to accessing eye care because of distance, cost to travel, and difficulty finding care in the community as many live in medically underserved areas. Also, rural veterans may be diagnosed in later stages of eye disease than their non-rural counterparts due to lack of access to specialty care. In March 2015, Technology-based Eye Care Services (TECS) was launched from the Atlanta Veterans Affairs (VA) as a quality improvement project to provide eye screening services for rural veterans. By tracking multiple measures including demographic and access to care metrics, data shows that TECS significantly improved access to care, with 33% of veterans receiving same-day access and >98% of veterans receiving an appointment within 30 days of request. TECS also provided care to a significant percentage of homeless veterans, 10.6% of the patients screened. Finally, TECS reduced healthcare costs, saving the VA up to US$148 per visit and approximately US$52 per patient in round trip travel reimbursements when compared to completing a face-to-face exam at the medical center. Overall savings to the VA system in this early phase of TECS totaled US$288,400, about US$41,200 per month. Other healthcare facilities may be able to use a similar protocol to extend care to at-risk patients.

  1. Military Sexual Trauma Among Recent Veterans: Correlates of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barth, Shannon K; Kimerling, Rachel E; Pavao, Joanne; McCutcheon, Susan J; Batten, Sonja V; Dursa, Erin; Peterson, Michael R; Schneiderman, Aaron I

    2016-01-01

    Military sexual trauma (MST) includes sexual harassment or sexual assault that occurs during military service and is of increasing public health concern. The population prevalence of MST among female and male veterans who served during Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF) has not been estimated to our knowledge. The purpose of this study is to assess the population prevalence and identify military correlates of MST, sexual harassment, and sexual assault among OEF/OIF veterans. MST was assessed in the 2009-2011 National Health Study for a New Generation of U.S. Veterans, a survey of 60,000 veterans who served during the OEF/OIF eras (response rate, 34%, n=20,563). Weighted prevalence estimates and AORs of MST, sexual harassment, and sexual assault among women and men were calculated. Gender-stratified logistic regression models controlled for military and demographic characteristics. Data analyses were conducted in 2013-2014. Approximately 41% of women and 4% of men reported experiencing MST. Deployed men had lower risk for MST compared with non-deployed men, though no difference was found among women. However, veterans reporting combat exposure during deployment had increased risk for MST compared with those without, while controlling for OEF/OIF deployment. Among women, Marines and Navy veterans had increased risk for MST compared with Air Force veterans. MST was significantly higher among veterans who reported using Veterans Affairs healthcare services. These prevalence estimates underscore the importance of public awareness and continued investigation of the public health impact of MST. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Risk factors for ED use among homeless veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2013-05-01

    Despite national concern about homeless veterans, there has been little examination of their use of emergency department (ED) services. This study examines factors related to the use of ED services in the Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare system, where insurance is not a barrier to ambulatory healthcare. National VA administrative data from fiscal year 2010 are used to describe the proportions of ED users among homeless and domiciled VA patients. A case-control design is then used to compare homeless ED and non-ED users on sociodemographic and clinical correlates, as well as use of ambulatory care and psychotropic medications. Sixteen percent of domiciled VA patients used EDs at least once during the year and 1% were frequent ED users (>4 ED visits) compared to 45% of homeless VA patients, 10% who were frequent ED users. Among homeless VA patients, those who used EDs were more likely to have a range of psychiatric and medical conditions, and had more service visits and psychotropic medication prescriptions than non-ED users. Multivariate analyses suggest their risk for psychiatric and medical conditions increase their likelihood of using ED services. The high rate of ED use among homeless veterans is associated with significant morbidity, but also greater use of ambulatory care and psychotropics suggesting their ED use may reflect unmet psychosocial needs. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  3. Effectiveness of Sofosbuvir, Ledipasvir/Sofosbuvir, or Paritaprevir/Ritonavir/Ombitasvir and Dasabuvir Regimens for Treatment of Patients With Hepatitis C in the Veterans Affairs National Health Care System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ioannou, George N; Beste, Lauren A; Chang, Michael F; Green, Pamela K; Lowy, Elliott; Tsui, Judith I; Su, Feng; Berry, Kristin

    2016-09-01

    We investigated the real-world effectiveness of sofosbuvir, ledipasvir/sofosbuvir, and paritaprevir/ritonavir/ombitasvir and dasabuvir (PrOD) in treatment of different subgroups of patients infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotypes 1, 2, 3, or 4. We performed a retrospective analysis of data from 17,487 patients with HCV infection (13,974 with HCV genotype 1; 2131 with genotype 2; 1237 with genotype 3; and 135 with genotype 4) who began treatment with sofosbuvir (n = 2986), ledipasvir/sofosbuvir (n = 11,327), or PrOD (n = 3174), with or without ribavirin, from January 1, 2014 through June 20, 2015 in the Veterans Affairs health care system. Data through April 15, 2016 were analyzed to assess completion of treatments and sustained virologic response 12 weeks after treatment (SVR12). Mean age of patients was 61 ± 7 years, 97% were male, 52% were non-Hispanic white, 29% were non-Hispanic black, 32% had a diagnosis of cirrhosis (9.9% with decompensated cirrhosis), 36% had a Fibrosis-4 index score >3.25 (indicator of cirrhosis), and 29% had received prior antiviral treatment. An SVR12 was achieved by 92.8% (95% confidence interval [CI], 92.3%-93.2%) of subjects with HCV genotype 1 infection (no significant difference between ledipasvir/sofosbuvir and PrOD regimens), 86.2% (95% CI, 84.6%-87.7%) of those with genotype 2 infection (treated with sofosbuvir and ribavirin), 74.8% (95% CI, 72.2%-77.3%) of those with genotype 3 infection (77.9% in patients given ledipasvir/sofosbuvir plus ribavirin, 87.0% in patients given sofosbuvir and pegylated-interferon plus ribavirin, and 70.6% of patients given sofosbuvir plus ribavirin), and 89.6% (95% CI 82.8%-93.9%) of those with genotype 4 infection. Among patients with cirrhosis, 90.6% of patients with HCV genotype 1, 77.3% with HCV genotype 2, 65.7% with HCV genotype 3, and 83.9% with HCV genotype 4 achieved an SVR12. Among previously treated patients, 92.6% with genotype 1; 80.2% with genotype 2; 69.2% with genotype 3

  4. Preliminary Data from the Caring for Older Adults and Caregivers at Home (COACH) Program: A Care Coordination Program for Home-Based Dementia Care and Caregiver Support in a Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Maria F; Davagnino, Judith; Hastings, S Nicole; Sloane, Richard; Kamholz, Barbara; Twersky, Jack

    2015-06-01

    Caring for Older Adults and Caregivers at Home (COACH) is an innovative care coordination program of the Durham Veteran's Affairs Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina, that provides home-based dementia care and caregiver support for individuals with dementia and their family caregivers, including attention to behavioral symptoms, functional impairment, and home safety, on a consultation basis. The objectives of this study were to describe the COACH program in its first 2 years of operation, assess alignment of program components with quality measures, report characteristics of program participants, and compare rates of placement outside the home with those of a nontreatment comparison group using a retrospective cohort design. Participants were community-dwelling individuals with dementia aged 65 and older who received primary care in the medical center's outpatient clinics and their family caregivers, who were enrolled as dyads (n = 133), and a control group of dyads who were referred to the program and met clinical eligibility criteria but did not enroll (n = 29). Measures included alignment with Dementia Management Quality Measures and time to placement outside the home during 12 months of follow-up after referral to COACH. Results of the evaluation demonstrated that COACH aligns with nine of 10 clinical process measures identified using quality measures and that COACH delivers several other valuable services to enhance care. Mean time to placement outside the home was 29.6 ± 14.3 weeks for both groups (P = .99). The present study demonstrates the successful implementation of a home-based care coordination intervention for persons with dementia and their family caregivers that is strongly aligned with quality measures. © 2015, Copyright the Authors Journal compilation © 2015, The American Geriatrics Society.

  5. 75 FR 78806 - Agency Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-Veterans and Survivors) Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-16

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-- Veterans and Survivors) Activity.... 2900-0655.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Residency Verification Report--Veterans and Survivors... submit the collection of information abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for...

  6. 38 CFR 21.6420 - Coordination with the Veterans Service Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... VETERANS AFFAIRS (CONTINUED) VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION AND EDUCATION Temporary Program of Vocational... Coordination with the Veterans Service Center. It is the responsibility of the VR&E Division to inform the...

  7. 77 FR 3842 - Proposed Information Collection (Conversion from Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance to Veterans...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-25

    ... (SGLI) to Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) for Disabled Service Members. OMB Control Number: 2900... members, especially service members with disabilities are informed about their life insurance option... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Conversion from Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance to Veterans...

  8. Modified Atkins diet in advanced malignancies - final results of a safety and feasibility trial within the Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan-Shalaby, Jocelyn L; Carrick, Jennifer; Edinger, Krystal; Genovese, Dana; Liman, Andrew D; Passero, Vida A; Shah, Rashmikant B

    2016-01-01

    Dysfunctional mitochondrial processes limit malignant cells ability to use energy from fatty acids and ketones. Animal studies using ketogenic diets for cancer show encouraging results. We tested the diet's safety and feasibility in cancer patients across a broad variety of solid tumors. We recruited 17 advanced cancer patients who were not on chemotherapy. They consumed 20 to 40 g of carbohydrates daily with evaluations performed weekly until week 4, then every 4 weeks until 16 weeks. Quality of life questionnaires monitored for tolerability and compliance. Positron emission/computerized tomography was ordered at baseline, 4,8 and 16 weeks. Student t-testing evaluated differences between baseline and last visit scores for quality of life, weight, body mass index, and serum parameters. Correlations between weight loss and serum ketones, glucose, lipids and creatinine were done. Two-tailed unpaired t-testing of the mean weight loss compared responders against non-responders. Eleven out of seventeen enrolled patients were evaluable. Mean age was 65+/- 11.7 years, weight 203 +/- 4.98 lbs. (92 ± 2.3 kgs.) and previous treatment failures was 1.7, +/- 0.97. All lost significant weight with hematologic, biochemical and lipid tests remaining stable. Quality of life scores slightly improved. At 4,8 and 16 weeks, six (54.5 %), five (45.4 %) and four (36 %) patients were stable or improved. We observed no correlations between serum glucose, ketones or lipids. Clinical response did not correlate with ketosis or glycemia. Responders (stable disease or partial responders) lost statistically more weight than non-responders. Dietary compliance was difficult. Only three patients continued dieting past 16 weeks. Out of these, two patients developed brain metastases and were on steroids. They survived 80 and 116 weeks respectively. The third patient underwent residual tumor resection and has no disease at 131 weeks. Modified Atkins diets are safe and feasible in advanced cancer. Quality of life was preserved. Patients who lost at least 10 % of their body weight responded the best. Steroid intake affected optimal ketone and glucose levels. Despite this, survival improved in some melanoma and lung cancer patients. Further studies are recommended. Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01716468. Registered on September 18, 2012.

  9. 38 CFR 3.712 - Improved pension elections; surviving spouses of Spanish-American War veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Improved pension elections; surviving spouses of Spanish-American War veterans. 3.712 Section 3.712 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS ADJUDICATION Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and...

  10. 77 FR 70210 - Agency Information Collection (Veteran's Application for Compensation and/or Pension): Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-23

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Veteran's Application for Compensation and/or Pension): Activity... Pension, VA Form 21-526. b. Veteran's Supplemental Claim Application, VA Form 21-526b. c. Authorization.... Veterans complete VA Form 21-526 to initially apply for compensation and/or pension benefits. b. Veterans...

  11. 38 CFR 3.453 - Veterans compensation or service pension or retirement pay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Veterans compensation or service pension or retirement pay. 3.453 Section 3.453 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS ADJUDICATION Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation...

  12. 38 CFR 3.23 - Improved pension rates-Veterans and surviving spouses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Improved pension rates-Veterans and surviving spouses. 3.23 Section 3.23 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS ADJUDICATION Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation General § 3...

  13. 78 FR 55338 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting Amendment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-10

    ... AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting Amendment The Department of Veterans... Committee on Homeless Veterans meeting on September 11-13, 2013, in the William Phillip King room at The... services of the Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall assemble and review...

  14. 77 FR 26069 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-05-02

    ...: 2012-10524] DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of Meeting... Committee Act) that a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans will be held on June 1-2, 2012..., organizational structures, and services of the Department in assisting homeless Veterans. The Committee shall...

  15. 78 FR 58611 - Agency Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement) Activity Under OMB Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-24

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement) Activity Under OMB... ``OMB Control No. 2900-0212.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance... collection. Abstract: Veterans complete VA Form 29-8636 to decline Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance (VMLI) or...

  16. 38 CFR 21.402 - Responsibilities of the Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation. 21.402 Section 21.402 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS (CONTINUED) VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION AND EDUCATION Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Under 38 U.S.C. Chapter 31 Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation § 21.402...

  17. 76 FR 27384 - Agency Information Collection Activity (Veteran Suicide Prevention Online Quantitative Surveys...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-11

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection Activity (Veteran Suicide Prevention Online Quantitative Surveys.... Veterans Online Survey, VA Form 10-0513. b. Veterans Family Online Survey, VA Form 10-0513a. c. Veterans Primary Care Provider Online Survey, VA Form 10-0513b. OMB Control Number: 2900-New (VA Form 10-0513...

  18. 76 FR 9637 - Proposed Information Collection (Veteran Suicide Prevention Online Quantitative Surveys) Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-18

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veteran Suicide Prevention Online Quantitative Surveys) Activity.... Veterans Online Survey, VA Form 10-0513: b. Veterans Family Online Survey, VA Form 10-0513a. c. Veterans Primary Care Provider Online Survey, VA Form 10-0513b. OMB Control Number: 2900-New (VA Form 10-0513...

  19. Optimizing strategies to improve interprofessional practice for veterans, part 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhattacharya SB

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Shelley B Bhattacharya,1–3 Michelle I Rossi,1,2 Jennifer M Mentz11Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center (GRECC, Veteran's Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System, 2University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 3Albert Schweitzer Fellowship Program, Pittsburgh, PA, USAIntroduction: Interprofessional patient care is a well-recognized path that health care systems are striving toward. The Veteran's Affairs (VA system initiated interprofessional practice (IPP models with their Geriatric Evaluation and Management (GEM programs. GEM programs incorporate a range of specialties, including but not limited to, medicine, nursing, social work, physical therapy and pharmacy, to collaboratively evaluate veterans. Despite being a valuable resource, they are now faced with significant cut-backs, including closures. The primary goal of this project was to assess how the GEM model could be optimized at the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania VA to allow for the sustainability of this important IPP assessment. Part 1 of the study evaluated the IPP process using program, patient, and family surveys. Part 2 examined how well the geriatrician matched patients to specialists in the GEM model. This paper describes Part 1 of our study.Methods: Three strategies were used: 1 a national GEM program survey; 2 a veteran/family satisfaction survey; and 3 an absentee assessment.Results: Twenty-six of 92 programs responded to the GEM IPP survey. Six strategies were shared to optimize IPP models throughout the country. Of the 34 satisfaction surveys, 80% stated the GEM clinic was beneficial, 79% stated their concerns were addressed, and 100% would recommend GEM to their friends. Of the 24 absentee assessments, the top three reasons for missing the appointments were transportation, medical illnesses, and not knowing/remembering about the appointment. Absentee rate diminished from 41% to 19% after instituting a reminder phone call policy.Discussion: Maintaining the

  20. 78 FR 72753 - Notice of Funds Availability for Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-03

    ... AFFAIRS Notice of Funds Availability for Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas; Extension of Application Deadline AGENCY: Department of Veterans Affairs. ACTION: Notice; extension of NOFA... deadline for funds available under the Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas program...

  1. Joint replacement surgery in homeless veterans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chase G. Bennett, MD

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Total joint arthroplasty (TJA in a homeless patient is generally considered contraindicated. Here, we report our known medical and social (housing and employment results of homeless veterans who had TJA. Thirty-seven TJAs were performed on 33 homeless patients (31 men at our hospital between November 2000 and March 2014. This was 1.2% of all TJAs. Average age was 54 years. Average hospital stay was 4.1 days. There were no major inpatient complications. Thirty-four cases had at least 1-year follow-up in any clinic within the Veterans Affairs health care system. There were no known surgery-related reoperations or readmissions. At final follow-up, 24 patients had stable housing and 9 were employed. The extensive and coordinated medical and social services that were provided to veterans from the Department of Veterans Affairs contributed to our positive results. Keywords: Homeless, Veteran, Joint replacement, Total hip, Total knee, Employment

  2. Risk factors associated with posttraumatic stress disorder in US veterans: A cohort study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Jan; Ganeshamoorthy, Sarmila; Myers, Jonathan

    2017-01-01

    To assess the association between clinical and exercise test factors and the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in US Veterans. Exercise capacity, demographics and clinical variables were assessed in 5826 veterans (mean age 59.4 ± 11.5 years) from the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System in Palo Alto, CA. The study participants underwent routine clinical exercise testing between the years 1987 and 2011. The study end point was the development of PTSD. A total of 723 (12.9%) veterans were diagnosed with PTSD after a mean follow-up of 9.6 ± 5.6 years. Drug abuse (HR: 1.98, CI: 1.33-2.92, p = .001), current smoking (HR: 1.57, CI: 1.35-2.24, p Physical activity pattern was not associated with PTSD in either the univariate or multivariate models. In the final multivariate model, current smoking (HR: 1.30, CI: 1.10-1.53, p = .002) history of chest pain (HR: 1.37, CI: 1.15-1.63, p <.001) and younger age (HR: 0.97, CI: 0.97-0.98, p <.001) were significantly associated to PTSD. Onset of PTSD is significantly associated with current smoking, history of chest pain and younger age. Screening veterans with multiple risk factors for symptoms of PTSD should therefore be taken into account.

  3. Use of structured and unstructured data to identify contraceptive use in women veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Womack, Julie A; Scotch, Matthew; Leung, Sylvia N; Skanderson, Melissa; Bathulapalli, Harini; Haskell, Sally G; Brandt, Cynthia A

    2013-01-01

    Contraceptive use among women Veterans may not be adequately captured using administrative and pharmacy codes. Clinical progress notes may provide a useful alternative. The objectives of this study were to validate the use of administrative and pharmacy codes to identify contraceptive use in Veterans Health Administration data, and to determine the feasibility and validity of identifying contraceptive use in clinical progress notes. The study included women Veterans who participated in the Women Veterans Cohort Study, enrolled in the Veterans Affairs Connecticut Health Care System, completed a baseline survey, and had clinical progress notes from one year prior to survey completion. Contraceptive ICD-9-CM codes, V-codes, CPT codes, and pharmacy codes were identified. Progress notes were annotated to identify contraceptive use. Self-reported contraceptive use was identified from a baseline survey of health habits and healthcare practices and utilization. Sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value were calculated comparing administrative and pharmacy contraceptive codes and progress note-based contraceptive information to self-report survey data. Results showed that administrative and pharmacy codes were specific but not sensitive for identifying contraceptive use. For example, oral contraceptive pill codes were highly specific (1.00) but not sensitive (0.41). Data from clinical progress notes demonstrated greater sensitivity and comparable specificity. For example, for oral contraceptive pills, progress notes were both specific (0.85) and sensitive (0.73). Results suggest that the best approach for identifying contraceptive use, through either administrative codes or progress notes, depends on the research question.

  4. A qualitative study of anticipated barriers and facilitators to the implementation of nurse-delivered alcohol screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment for hospitalized patients in a Veterans Affairs medical center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broyles, Lauren Matukaitis; Rodriguez, Keri L; Kraemer, Kevin L; Sevick, Mary Ann; Price, Patrice A; Gordon, Adam J

    2012-05-02

    Unhealthy alcohol use includes the spectrum of alcohol consumption from risky drinking to alcohol use disorders. Routine alcohol screening, brief intervention (BI) and referral to treatment (RT) are commonly endorsed for improving the identification and management of unhealthy alcohol use in outpatient settings. However, factors which might impact screening, BI, and RT implementation in inpatient settings, particularly if delivered by nurses, are unknown, and must be identified to effectively plan randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of nurse-delivered BI. The purpose of this study was to identify the potential barriers and facilitators associated with nurse-delivered alcohol screening, BI and RT for hospitalized patients. We conducted audio-recorded focus groups with nurses from three medical-surgical units at a large urban Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Transcripts were analyzed using modified grounded theory techniques to identify key themes regarding anticipated barriers and facilitators to nurse-delivered screening, BI and RT in the inpatient setting. A total of 33 medical-surgical nurses (97% female, 83% white) participated in one of seven focus groups. Nurses consistently anticipated the following barriers to nurse-delivered screening, BI, and RT for hospitalized patients: (1) lack of alcohol-related knowledge and skills; (2) limited interdisciplinary collaboration and communication around alcohol-related care; (3) inadequate alcohol assessment protocols and poor integration with the electronic medical record; (4) concerns about negative patient reaction and limited patient motivation to address alcohol use; (5) questionable compatibility of screening, BI and RT with the acute care paradigm and nursing role; and (6) logistical issues (e.g., lack of time/privacy). Suggested facilitators of nurse-delivered screening, BI, and RT focused on provider- and system-level factors related to: (1) improved provider knowledge, skills, communication, and collaboration

  5. HIGH PREVALENCE OF AGENT ORANGE EXPOSURE AMONG THYROID CANCER PATIENTS IN THE NATIONAL VA HEALTHCARE SYSTEM.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le, Karen T; Sawicki, Mark P; Wang, Marilene B; Hershman, Jerome M; Leung, Angela M

    2016-06-01

    Thyroid cancer is the most common endocrine malignancy and the most rapidly increasing cancer in the U.S. Little is known regarding the epidemiology and characteristics of patients with thyroid cancer within the national Veterans Health Administration (VHA) integrated healthcare system. The aim of this study was to further understand the characteristics of thyroid cancer patients in the VHA population, particularly in relation to Agent Orange exposure. This is a descriptive analysis of the VA (Veterans Affairs) Corporate Data Warehouse database from all U.S. VHA healthcare sites from October1, 1999, to December 31, 2013. Information was extracted for all thyroid cancer patients based on International Classification of Diseases-ninth revision diagnosis codes; histologic subtypes of thyroid cancer were not available. There were 19,592 patients (86% men, 76% white, 58% married, 42% Vietnam-era Veteran) in the VHA system with a diagnosis of thyroid cancer within this 14-year study period. The gender-stratified prevalence rates of thyroid cancer among the Veteran population during the study period were 1:1,114 (women) and 1:1,023 (men), which were lower for women but similar for men, when compared to the U.S. general population in 2011 (1:350 for women and 1:1,219 for men). There was a significantly higher proportion of self-reported Agent Orange exposure among thyroid cancer patients (10.0%), compared to the general VHA population (6.2%) (PAgent Orange exposure compared to the overall national VA patient population. T4 = thyroxine TCDD = 2, 3, 7, 8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin TSH = thyroid-stimulating hormone VA = Veterans Affairs VHA = Veterans Health Administration.

  6. Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) Registry Veterans in VHA Care in 2015, for the Nation, by VISN and by Station

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This report describes the number of Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) registry Veterans in VHA care in 2015 based on serologic evidence of HCV infection status (HCV Positive)...

  7. Identifying US veterans who access services from health care for the homeless clinics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knopf-Amelung, Sarah M; Jenkins, Darlene M

    2013-12-01

    Research on veterans experiencing homelessness is predominantly focused on the US Department of Veterans Affairs setting, despite the fact that substantial numbers receive services from Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) clinics. We explored how HCH clinics identified veteran patients through a survey of administrators (49% response rate). The majority (98%) identified veterans but used varied language and approaches. Implementing a streamlined, culturally competent identification process is vital to collecting accurate data, connecting veterans with benefits, and informing treatment plans.

  8. 38 CFR 8.30 - Appeal to Board of Veterans Appeals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Appeal to Board of Veterans Appeals. 8.30 Section 8.30 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS NATIONAL SERVICE LIFE INSURANCE Appeals § 8.30 Appeal to Board of Veterans Appeals. (a) The provisions of Part 19 of this chapter will be followed i...

  9. 77 FR 64386 - Agency Information Collection Activities (Per Diem for Nursing Home Care of Veterans in State...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-19

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection Activities (Per Diem for Nursing Home Care of Veterans in State Homes; Per Diem for Adult Day Care of Veterans in State Homes) Under OMB Review AGENCY: Veterans Health... day health services care to Veterans. VA requires facilities providing nursing home and adult day...

  10. 78 FR 46421 - Proposed Information Collection (Per Diem for Nursing Home Care of Veterans in State Homes; Per...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-31

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Per Diem for Nursing Home Care of Veterans in State Homes; Per Diem for Adult Day Care of Veterans in State Homes): Comment Request AGENCY: Veterans Health... home and adult day health services care to Veterans. VA requires facilities providing nursing home and...

  11. 38 CFR 17.351 - Grants for the replacement and upgrading of equipment at Veterans Memorial Medical Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Grants for the..., Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS MEDICAL Grants to the Republic of the Philippines § 17.351 Grants for the replacement and upgrading of equipment at Veterans Memorial Medical Center...

  12. 38 CFR 74.4 - Who does CVE consider to control a veteran-owned small business?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... of business operations. An applicant or participant's management and daily business operations must... control a veteran-owned small business? 74.4 Section 74.4 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS (CONTINUED) VETERANS SMALL BUSINESS REGULATIONS General Guidelines § 74.4 Who...

  13. 77 FR 38395 - Agency Information Collection (Appointment of Veterans Service Organization/or Individuals as...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-27

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Appointment of Veterans Service Organization/or Individuals as... of Veterans Affairs, will submit the collection of information abstracted below to the Office of... information collection and its expected cost and burden; it includes the actual data collection instrument...

  14. 78 FR 73926 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-09

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... Health Advisory Committee will hold a meeting on January 14-15, 2014, in Room 1G12, Building 1, at the George E. Whalen VA Medical Center (VAMC), 500 Foothill Drive, Salt Lake City, Utah, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m...

  15. 75 FR 8789 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-02-25

    ... AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting The Department of Veterans Affairs... rural areas. The Committee examines programs and policies that impact the provision of VA health care to... hear from its chairman, the acting director of the VA Office of Rural Health, and the directors of the...

  16. 76 FR 40451 - Agency Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance-Change of Address Statement...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-08

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance-- Change of Address Statement.... 2900-0503.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance--Change of Address... continued ownership of property issued under Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance when an address change for the...

  17. 75 FR 52065 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement) Activity: Comment...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-08-24

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement) Activity: Comment... solicits comments for information needed to decline Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance. DATES: Written...: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Statement, VA Form 29-8636. OMB Control Number: 2900-0212. Type of Review...

  18. 78 FR 58264 - Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance and Veterans' Group Life Insurance Information Access

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-23

    ... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 9 RIN 2900-AO42 Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance and Veterans' Group Life... Insurance (SGLI), Family SGLI, SGLI Traumatic Injury Protection, and Veterans' Group Life Insurance (all...-AO42 Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance and Veterans' Group Life Insurance Information Access...

  19. 76 FR 40455 - Agency Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Inquiry) Activity Under OMB Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-08

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Inquiry) Activity Under OMB Review... INFORMATION: Title: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance Inquiry, VA Form 29-0543. OMB Control Number: 2900-0501... insured under Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance (VMLI) completes VA Form 29-0543 to report any recent...

  20. 76 FR 73019 - Proposed Information Collection (Agreement To Train on the Job Disabled Veterans) Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-28

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Agreement To Train on the Job Disabled Veterans) Activity... comments on information needed to assure that on the job training establishments are providing veterans... use of other forms of information technology. Title: Agreement to Train on the Job Disabled Veterans...

  1. 78 FR 41195 - Fund Availability Under the Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-09

    ... AFFAIRS Fund Availability Under the Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas AGENCY... announcing the availability of funds under the Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas. This Notice contains information concerning the Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural...

  2. 76 FR 82212 - Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-12-30

    ... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 17 RIN 2900-AO01 Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas AGENCY... to ``RIN 2900-AO01, Grants for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas.'' Copies of comments... award grants to eligible entities to assist veterans in highly rural areas to travel to VA medical...

  3. 78 FR 56773 - Notice of Funds Availability Inviting Applications for Grants for Transportation of Veterans in...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-13

    ... AFFAIRS Notice of Funds Availability Inviting Applications for Grants for Transportation of Veterans in... deadline for funds available under the Grant Program for Transportation of Veterans in Highly Rural Areas..., Highly Rural Transportation Grants, Veterans Transportation Program, Chief Business Office (10NB2G), 2957...

  4. 78 FR 77204 - Proposed Information Collection (VA National Veterans Sports Programs and Special Event Surveys...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-20

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (VA National Veterans Sports Programs and Special Event Surveys... solicits comments on the information needed to evaluate the National Veterans Sports Programs and Special... ``OMB Control No. 2900-NEW (VA National Veterans Sports Programs and Special Event Surveys)'' in any...

  5. 78 FR 36309 - Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses, Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-06-17

    ... diagnosing and treating Gulf War Veterans, and a drug treatment trial which is underway. On June 18, the... AFFAIRS Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses, Notice of Meeting The Department of... Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses will meet on June 17 and 18, 2013, in room 230...

  6. 77 FR 3327 - Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-23

    ... No: 2012-1173] DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee; Notice of... Committee Act) that the Veterans' Rural Health Advisory Committee will conduct a telephone conference call meeting from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Monday, January 30, 2012, in Room GL20 of the Office of Rural Health...

  7. Associations Between Provider Designation and Female-specific Cancer Screening in Women Veterans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bean-Mayberry, Bevanne; Bastian, Lori; Trentalange, Mark; Murphy, Terrence E.; Skanderson, Melissa; Allore, Heather; Reyes-Harvey, Evelyn; Maisel, Natalya C.; Gaetano, Vera; Wright, Steven; Haskell, Sally; Brandt, Cynthia

    2017-01-01

    Background In 2010, the Department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare System (VA) implemented policy to provide Comprehensive Primary Care (for acute, chronic, and female-specific care) from designated Women’s Health providers (DWHPs) at all VA sites. However, since that time no comparisons of quality measures have been available to assess the level of care for women Veterans assigned to these providers. Objectives To evaluate the associations between cervical and breast cancer screening rates among age-appropriate women Veterans and designation of primary-care provider (DWHP vs. non-DWHP). Research Design Cross-sectional analyses using the fiscal year 2012 data on VA women’s health providers, administrative files, and patient-specific quality measures. Subjects The sample included 37,128 women Veterans aged 21 through 69 years. Measures Variables included patient demographic and clinical factors (ie, age, race, ethnicity, mental health diagnoses, obesity, and site), and provider factors (ie, DWHP status, sex, and panel size). Screening measures were defined by age-appropriate subgroups using VA national guidelines. Results Female-specific cancer screening rates were higher among patients assigned to DWHPs (cervical cytology 94.4% vs. 91.9%, P screening (odds ratio, 1.26; 95% confidence interval, 1.07–1.47; P screening (odds ratio, 1.24; 95% CI, 1.10–1.39; P screening within VA. Separate evaluation of sex neutral measures is needed to determine whether other measures accrue benefits for patients with DWHPs. PMID:25767975

  8. The transformation experience of the Veterans Health Administration and its relevance to Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fooks, Cathy; Decter, Michael

    2005-01-01

    Over the past few years, there has been a steady stream of visitors to Canada from the US Veterans Health Administration (VA). Led by the former Under Secretary for Health in the Department of Veterans Affairs, Dr. Ken Kizer, they come to tell the remarkable story of how the VA transformed itself from a hospital-based bureaucracy described as "dangerous, dirty and scandal-ridden" to a healthcare system for veterans recognized for its high-quality, patient-centred care. It is a fascinating story of how a publicly funded healthcare service changed its entire approach to patient care with a quality improvement lens at its core. Fifteen years ago, critics of the VA called for its complete privatization as the only solution to fixing its problems. A team of quality champions set out to prove otherwise. Canada has some lessons to learn. The VA is a compelling role model for Canadian reformers, in large measure, due to its public sector character.

  9. Veterans’s Medical Care: FY2014 Appropriations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-14

    B and flu vaccinations . 25 Department of Veterans Affairs, FY2014 Budget Submission, Medical Programs and Information Technology Programs, Volume 2...veterans of World War II allied nations, and employees receiving preventative occupational immunizations such as Hepatitis A&B and flu vaccinations . The...based counseling centers that provide a wide range of social and psychological services such as professional readjustment counseling to veterans who

  10. The Department of Veterans Health Administration Office of Nursing Service, "transforming nursing in a national healthcare system: an example of transformation in action".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wertenberger, Sydney; Chapman, Kathleen M; Wright-Brown, Salena

    2011-01-01

    The Department of Veterans Health Administration Office of Nursing Service has embarked on a multiyear transformational process, an example of which is the development of an organization-wide nursing handbook. The development of this handbook offered the opportunity to improve collaboration, redefine expectations and behavior, as well as prepare for the future of Nursing within the Veterans Health Administration. The lessons learned from this process have revolved around the themes of leadership skills for managing high-level change often in a virtual environment; constant collaboration; that the practice of nursing will continue to evolve on the basis of new evidence, technology, customer expectations, and resources; and that the process to accomplish this goal is powerful.

  11. Awareness and implementation of tobacco dependence treatment guidelines in Arizona: Healthcare Systems Survey 2000

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Menke J Michael

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background This paper presents findings from the Tobacco Control in Arizona Healthcare Systems Survey, conducted in 2000. The purpose of the survey was to assess the status of Arizona healthcare systems' awareness and implementation of tobacco cessation and prevention measures. Methods The 20-item survey was developed by The University of Arizona HealthCare Partnership in collaboration with the Arizona Department of Health Services Bureau of Tobacco Education and Prevention. It was mailed to representatives of Arizona's 40 healthcare systems, including commercial and Medicare managed care organizations, "managed Medicaid" organizations, Veterans Affairs Health Care Systems, and Indian Health Service Medical Centers. Thirty-three healthcare systems (83% completed the survey. Results The majority of healthcare systems reported awareness of at least one tobacco cessation and prevention clinical practice guideline, but only one third reported full guideline implementation. While a majority covered some form of behavioral therapy, less than half reported covering tobacco treatment medications. "Managed Medicaid" organizations administered through the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System were significantly less likely to offer coverage for behavioral therapy and less likely to cover pharmacotherapy than were their non-Medicaid counterparts in managed care, Veterans Affairs Health Care Systems and Indian Health Service Medical Centers. Conclusion Arizona healthcare system coverage for tobacco cessation in the year 2000 was comparable to national survey findings of the same year. The findings that only 10% of "Managed Medicaid" organizations covered tobacco treatment medication and were significantly less likely to cover behavioral therapy were important given the nearly double smoking prevalence among Medicaid patients. Throughout the years of the program, the strategic plan of the Arizona Department of Health Services Bureau of Tobacco

  12. Results from a clinical yoga program for veterans: yoga via telehealth provides comparable satisfaction and health improvements to in-person yoga.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulz-Heik, R Jay; Meyer, Hilary; Mahoney, Louise; Stanton, Michael V; Cho, Rachael H; Moore-Downing, Danae P; Avery, Timothy J; Lazzeroni, Laura C; Varni, Joanne M; Collery, Linda Martin; Bayley, Peter J

    2017-04-04

    Yoga is increasingly popular, though little data regarding its implementation in healthcare settings is available. Similarly, telehealth is being utilized more frequently to increase access to healthcare; however we know of no research on the acceptability or effectiveness of yoga delivered through telehealth. Therefore, we evaluated the feasibility, acceptability, and patient-reported effectiveness of a clinical yoga program at a Veterans Affairs Medical Center and assessed whether these outcomes differed between those participating in-person and those participating via telehealth. Veterans who attended a yoga class at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System were invited to complete an anonymous program evaluation survey. 64 Veterans completed the survey. Participants reported high satisfaction with the classes and the instructors. More than 80% of participants who endorsed a problem with pain, energy level, depression, or anxiety reported improvement in these symptoms. Those who participated via telehealth did not differ from those who participated in-person in any measure of satisfaction, overall improvement (p = .40), or improvement in any of 16 specific health problems. Delivering yoga to a wide range of patients within a healthcare setting appears to be feasible and acceptable, both when delivered in-person and via telehealth. Patients in this clinical yoga program reported high levels of satisfaction and improvement in multiple problem areas. This preliminary evidence for the effectiveness of a clinical yoga program complements prior evidence for the efficacy of yoga and supports the use of yoga in healthcare settings.

  13. Veterans' homecomings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Birgitte Refslund

    2015-01-01

    social identity and find a meaningful life in the civilian world. When doing so, they need to navigate an ambiguous political environment and emergent public imaginaries of the veteran while also wrestling with their own military socialization and personal experiences of war. The certainty previously...... experiences, present conditions, and future ambitions are embedded in webs of concealment, disclosure, exposure, deception, lying, silence, and so forth, only partially controlled by the veterans themselves. The intricacies and anxieties associated with secrecy work are discussed in relation to three veteran...

  14. 38 CFR 3.401 - Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... domiciliary. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501) (3) Spouse, additional compensation for aid and attendance: Date of...) Director of a Department of Veterans Affairs medical center or domiciliary. From day following date of last... from hospitalization (regular or release to non-bed care). (i) Increased disability pension based on...

  15. Universal screening for homelessness and risk for homelessness in the Veterans Health Administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montgomery, Ann Elizabeth; Fargo, Jamison D; Byrne, Thomas H; Kane, Vincent R; Culhane, Dennis P

    2013-12-01

    We examined data for all veterans who completed the Veterans Health Administration's national homelessness screening instrument between October 1, 2012, and January 10, 2013. Among veterans who were not engaged with the US Department of Veterans Affairs homeless system and presented for primary care services, the prevalence of recent housing instability or homelessness was 0.9% and homelessness risk was 1.2%. Future research will refine outreach strategies, targeting of prevention resources, and development of novel interventions.

  16. Addressing the Needs of Transgender Military Veterans: Better Access and More Comprehensive Care

    OpenAIRE

    Dietert, Michelle; Dentice, Dianne; Keig, Zander

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Purpose: There is a gap in social science literature addressing issues of access and quality of care for transgender military veterans. Psychologists, medical doctors, and other health professionals are beginning to address some of the barriers present in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system that affect veterans who are also transgender and intersex. Over a 7-year period, between 2006 and 2013, 2600 transgender veterans were served by the VA. Data from several surveys revea...

  17. Veterans Health Administration

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... code here VA » Veterans Health Administration Veterans Health Administration Veterans – Here's how to Avoid Getting the Flu ... Read more » VA Medical Centers The Veterans Health Administration is home to the United States’ largest integrated ...

  18. "I'm Coming Home, Tell the World I'm Coming Home". The Long Homecoming and Mental Health Treatment of Iraq and Afghanistan War Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rozanova, Julia; Noulas, Paraskevi; Smart, Kathleen; Roy, Alicia; Southwick, Steven M; Davidson, Larry; Harpaz-Rotem, Ilan

    2016-09-01

    This study explored the journey of American armed forces personnel from their decision to join the service, through their service in an active military conflict and how these factors may be associated with potential resistance for mental healthcare. The data came from qualitative interviews with 46 OIF/OEF/OND active-duty military, reservists, and discharged veterans of the average age of 25 years, who presented for a new episode of mental health treatment to a large Veterans Affairs Hospital (VAH) in Northeastern United States in 2011-2012. Qualitative analysis of veterans' perceptions revealed several major themes describing how a mental health diagnosis would negatively impact both their sense of identity and pragmatic career-building goals: enlisting as a career-building avenue, 'noble superhero' identity, escaping from hardship, and mental illness as a career-killer. Findings suggest that factors making young veterans resist mental healthcare may be reduced by partnering VAH psychiatrists with career counselors, and by enhancing military leadership's awareness and understanding about how to support soldiers with emotional and mental health needs, with a goal to eliminating stigma.

  19. Veterans and Homelessness

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-11-29

    health care and rehabilitation services for homeless veterans (the Health Care for Homeless Veterans and Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans...Health Care for Homeless Veterans ................................................................................... 19 Domiciliary Care for Homeless...for Homeless Veterans (HCHV), Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans (DCHV), the Compensated Work Therapy/Therapeutic Residences Program, and the

  20. Higher Education Military and Veteran Student Program Success: A Qualitative Study of Program Administration Best Practice Application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murillo, Rose L.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine how Southern California community colleges have implemented best practices based on the 8 Keys to Veterans' Success as identified by the U.S. Departments of Education, Defense, and Veterans Affairs to effectively support and retain military and veteran students in higher education programs. The…

  1. Supporting School Success for Homeless Children of Veterans and Active Duty Military Members. Best Practices in Interagency Collaboration

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Center for Homeless Education at SERVE, 2011

    2011-01-01

    This brief is designed for local staff of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), state McKinney-Vento coordinators and school district McKinney-Vento liaisons, educators, and other providers of services to active members of the military and veterans, and their children. It provides basic information to assist homeless children of veterans or…

  2. Special home adaptation grants for members of the Armed Forces and veterans with certain vision impairment. Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-12

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is issuing a final rule to amend its adjudication regulations regarding special home adaptation grants for members of the Armed Forces and veterans with certain vision impairment. This regulatory amendment is necessary to conform the regulations to changes mandated in the Honoring America's Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012.

  3. 76 FR 55570 - Per Diem Payments for the Care Provided to Eligible Veterans Evacuated From a State Home as a...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-08

    ... veteran receiving nursing home care, domiciliary care, and adult day health care in State home facilities... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Parts 17 and 51 RIN 2900-AN63 Per Diem Payments for the Care Provided to Eligible Veterans... for providing a specified level of care to eligible veterans in a facility that is officially...

  4. Perspectives on Sexual Health and Function of Recent Male Combat Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helmer, Drew A; Beaulieu, Gregory; Powers, Catherine; Houlette, Cheryl; Latini, David; Kauth, Michael

    2015-09-01

    U.S. veterans of recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan may be at greater risk for sexual dysfunction due to injuries, mental health conditions, medications used to treat those conditions, and psychosocial factors. To explore the perceptions of recent Veterans about sexual health and dysfunction, contributing factors, its impact and solutions. Qualitative study. Eight men who screened positive for sexual dysfunction at initial presentation to a postdeployment clinic at a Veterans Affairs medical center. Patients who screened positive for sexual dysfunction and indicated an interest in participating were contacted and scheduled for an in-person private interview with a researcher. Interviews were semistructured, utilizing open-ended and follow-up probe questions to elicit the individual's perspective about sexual dysfunction and its cause, impact and solutions. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and analyzed for themes. These heterosexual men discussed a range of sexual dysfunction in their activities including lack of desire, erectile dysfunction, delayed orgasm, premature ejaculation, and distraction. They also discussed the importance of setting or context and changes over time to their sexual health and function. The men shared their ideas about contributory factors, including normal aging, medication side effects, injury and a possible role for combat deployment more generally. Reported solutions for sexual dysfunction included medications, herbal remedies, and new positions and approaches to sexual activity. Participants reported discussing sexual dysfunction with their health-care providers and what was helpful. Finally, the men expressed in their own words the significant impact of sexual dysfunction on their self-perception, their partners, and their relationships. Sexual dysfunction in recent combat veterans can have important negative effects on their health and relationships. Our findings elucidate perceived contributory factors and preferred solutions

  5. Racial Differences in Chronic Conditions and Sociodemographic Characteristics Among High-Utilizing Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breland, Jessica Y; Chee, Christine Pal; Zulman, Donna M

    2015-06-01

    African-Americans are disproportionally represented among high-risk, high-utilizing patients. To inform program development for this vulnerable population, the current study describes racial variation in chronic conditions and sociodemographic characteristics among high-utilizing patients in the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System (VA). We identified the 5 % most costly Veterans who used inpatient or outpatient care at the VA during fiscal year 2010 (N = 237,691) based on costs of inpatient and outpatient care, pharmacy services, and VA-sponsored contract care. Patient costs and characteristics were abstracted from VA outpatient and inpatient data files. Racial differences in sociodemographic characteristics (age, sex, marital support, homelessness, and health insurance status) were assessed with chi-square tests. Racial differences in 32 chronic condition diagnoses were calculated as relative risk ratios. African-Americans represented 21 % of high-utilizing Veterans. African-Americans had higher rates of homelessness (26 vs. 10 %, p < 0.001) and lower rates of supplemental health insurance (44 vs. 58 %, p < 0.001). The mean number of chronic conditions was similar across race. However, there were racial differences in the prevalence of specific chronic conditions, including a higher prevalence of HIV/AIDS (95 % confidence interval (CI) 4.86, 5.50) and schizophrenia (95 % CI 1.94, 2.07) and a lower prevalence of ischemic heart disease (95 % CI 0.57, 0.59) and bipolar disorder (95 % CI 0.78, 0.85) among African-American high-utilizing Veterans. Racial disparities among high-utilizing Veterans may differ from those found in the general population. Interventions should devote attention to social, environmental, and mental health issues in order to reduce racial disparities in this vulnerable population.

  6. Reproductive and other health outcomes in Iraq and Afghanistan women veterans using VA health care: association with mental health diagnoses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Beth E; Maguen, Shira; Bertenthal, Daniel; Shi, Ying; Jacoby, Vanessa; Seal, Karen H

    2012-09-01

    An increasing number of women serve in the military and are exposed to trauma during service that can lead to mental health problems. Understanding how these mental health problems affect reproductive and physical health outcomes will inform interventions to improve care for women veterans. We analyzed national Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) data from women Iraq and Afghanistan veterans who were new users of VA healthcare from October 7, 2001, through December 31, 2010 (n = 71,504). We used ICD-9 codes to categorize veterans into five groups by mental health diagnoses (MH Dx): Those with no MH Dx, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, comorbid PTSD and depression, and a MH Dx other than PTSD and depression. We determined the association between mental health category and reproductive and other physical health outcomes defined by ICD-9 codes. Categories included sexually transmitted infections, other infections (e.g., urinary tract infections), pain-related conditions (e.g., dysmenorrhea and dsypareunia), and other conditions (e.g., polycystic ovarian syndrome, infertility, sexual dysfunction). Models were adjusted for sociodemographic and military service factors. There were 31,481 patients (44%) who received at least one mental health diagnosis. Women veterans with any mental health diagnosis had significantly higher prevalences of nearly all categories of reproductive and physical disease diagnoses (p mental health diagnoses had significantly greater prevalences of several important reproductive and physical health diagnoses. These results provide support for VA initiatives to address mental and physical health concerns and improve comprehensive care for women veterans. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Male veterans with complicated urinary tract infections: Influence of a patient-centered antimicrobial stewardship program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbo, James F; Ruh, Christine A; Kurtzhalts, Kari E; Ott, Michael C; Sellick, John A; Mergenhagen, Kari A

    2016-12-01

    The influence of antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs) on outcomes in male veterans treated for complicated urinary tract infection has not been determined. This was a retrospective cohort study encompassing the study period January 1, 2005-October 31, 2014, which was conducted at a 150-bed Veterans Affairs Healthcare System facility in Buffalo, NY. Male veterans admitted for treatment of complicated urinary tract infection were identified using ICD-9-CM codes. Outcomes before and after implementation of a patient-centered ASP, including duration of antibiotic therapy, length of hospitalization, readmission within 30 days, and Clostridium difficile infection were compared. Interventions resulting from the ASP were categorized. Of the 1,268 patients screened, 241 met criteria for inclusion in the study (n = 118 and n = 123 in the pre-ASP and ASP group, respectively). Duration of antibiotic therapy was significantly shorter in the ASP group (10.32 days vs 11.96 days; P complicated urinary tract infection. Implementation of an ASP was associated with significant decreases in duration of antibiotic therapy and length of hospitalization, without adversely affecting 30-day readmission rates. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  8. Veterans and Pell Grant Eligibility in 1982. Joint Hearing before the Subcommittee on Postsecondary Education of the Committee on Education and Labor and the Subcommittee on Education, Training and Employment of the Committee on Veterans Affairs, House of Representatives, Ninety-Seventh Congress, Second Session. Serial No. 97-81.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. House Committee on Education and Labor.

    This is a Congressional hearing to review and receive comment on H.R. 6190, legislation that would amend Title 38, United States Code, to exempt GI bill educational benefits from the determination of a veteran's eligibility for Federal educational benefits. Testimony includes statements, prepared statements, letters, and supplemental materials…

  9. Treatment-seeking veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan: comparison with veterans of previous wars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontana, Alan; Rosenheck, Robert

    2008-07-01

    Differences in the characteristics and mental health needs of veterans of the Iraq/Afghanistan war when compared with those of veterans who served in the Persian Gulf war and in the Vietnam war may have important implications for Veterans Affairs (VA) program and treatment planning. Subjects were drawn from administrative data bases of veterans who sought treatment from specialized VA programs for treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Current Iraq/Afghanistan veterans were compared with 4 samples of outpatient and inpatient Persian Gulf and Vietnam veterans whose admission to treatment was either contemporaneous or noncontemporaneous with their admission. A series of analyses of covariance was used hierachically to control for program site and age. In analyses of contemporaneous veterans uncontrolled for age, Iraq/Afghanistan veterans differed most notably from Vietnam veterans by being younger, more likely to be female, less likely to be either married or separated/divorced, more often working, less likely to have ever been incarcerated, and less likely to report exposure to atrocities in the military. Regarding clinical status, Iraq/Afghanistan veterans were less often diagnosed with substance abuse disorders, manifested more violent behavior, and had lower rates of VA disability compensation because of PTSD. Differences are more muted in comparisons with Persian Gulf veterans, particularly in those involving noncontemporaneous samples, or those that controlled for age differences. Among recent war veterans with PTSD, social functioning has largely been left intact. There is a window of opportunity, therefore, for developing and focusing on treatment interventions that emphasize the preservation of these social assets.

  10. The use of warfarin in veterans with atrial fibrillation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosenbeck Karen

    2004-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Warfarin therapy is effective for the prevention of stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation. However, warfarin therapy is underutilized even among ideal anticoagulation candidates. The purpose of this study was to examine the use of warfarin in both inpatients and outpatients with atrial fibrillation within a Veterans Affairs (VA hospital system. Methods This retrospective medical record review included outpatients and inpatients with atrial fibrillation. The outpatient cohort included all patients seen in the outpatient clinics of the VA Connecticut Healthcare System during June 2000 with a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation. The inpatient cohort included all patients discharged from the VA Connecticut Healthcare System West Haven Medical Center with a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation during October 1999 – March 2000. The outcome measure was the rate of warfarin prescription in patients with atrial fibrillation. Results A total of 538 outpatients had a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation and 73 of these had a documented contraindication to anticoagulation. Among the 465 eligible outpatients, 455 (98% were prescribed warfarin. For the inpatients, a total of 212 individual patients were discharged with a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation and 97 were not eligible for warfarin therapy. Among the 115 eligible inpatients, 106 (92% were discharged on warfarin. Conclusions Ideal anticoagulation candidates with atrial fibrillation are being prescribed warfarin at very high rates within one VA system, in both the inpatient and outpatient settings; we found warfarin use within our VA was much higher than that observed for Medicare beneficiaries in our state.

  11. Profile of Sheltered Homeless Veterans for Fiscal Years 2009 and 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — This brief uses data from the 2009 and 2010 Annual Homeless Assessment Reports (AHAR) to Congress. The reports were sponsored by the Department of Housing and Urban...

  12. Internet Use and Technology-Related Attitudes of Veterans and Informal Caregivers of Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan-Porter, Wei; Van Houtven, Courtney H; Mahanna, Elizabeth P; Chapman, Jennifer G; Stechuchak, Karen M; Coffman, Cynthia J; Hastings, Susan Nicole

    2017-12-18

    Healthcare systems are interested in technology-enhanced interventions to improve patient access and outcomes. However, there is uncertainty about feasibility and acceptability for groups who may benefit but are at risk for disparities in technology use. Thus, we sought to describe characteristics of Internet use and technology-related attitudes for two such groups: (1) Veterans with multi-morbidity and high acute care utilization and (2) informal caregivers of Veterans with substantial care needs at home. We used survey data from two ongoing trials, for 423 Veteran and 169 caregiver participants, respectively. Questions examined Internet use in the past year, willingness to communicate via videoconferencing, and comfort with new technology devices. Most participants used Internet in the past year (81% of Veterans, 82% of caregivers); the majority of users (83% of Veterans, 92% of caregivers) accessed Internet at least a few times a week, and used a private laptop or computer (81% of Veterans, 89% of caregivers). Most were willing to use videoconferencing via private devices (77-83%). A majority of participants were comfortable attempting to use new devices with in-person assistance (80% of Veterans, 85% of caregivers), whereas lower proportions were comfortable "on your own" (58-59% for Veterans and caregivers). Internet use was associated with comfort with new technology devices (odds ratio 2.76, 95% confidence interval 1.70-4.53). Findings suggest that technology-enhanced healthcare interventions are feasible and acceptable for Veterans with multi-morbidity and high healthcare utilization, and informal caregivers of Veterans. In-person assistance may be important for those with no recent Internet use.

  13. Health Programs for Veterans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Health Administration » Health Programs for Veterans Veterans Health Administration Health Programs for Veterans Beyond the doctors and ... families of patients receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers Geriatrics & Extended Care Geriatric ...

  14. 77 FR 70210 - Agency Information Collection (VA Subcontracting Report for Service Disabled Veteran-owned Small...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-23

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (VA Subcontracting Report for Service Disabled Veteran-owned Small....'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: VA Subcontracting Report for Service Disabled Veteran-owned Small Business and... from subcontractors to compare information obtained from subcontracting plans submitted by prime...

  15. 76 FR 70827 - Proposed Information Collection (Board of Veterans' Appeals Customer Satisfaction With Hearing...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-11-15

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Board of Veterans' Appeals Customer Satisfaction With Hearing... techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title: Board of Veterans' Appeals Customer Satisfaction with Hearing Survey Card, VA Form 0745. OMB Control Number: 2900-0548. Type of Review: Extension...

  16. 77 FR 3843 - Agency Information Collection (Board of Veterans' Appeals Customer Satisfaction With Hearing...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-25

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Board of Veterans' Appeals Customer Satisfaction With Hearing... techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title: Board of Veterans' Appeals Customer Satisfaction with Hearing Survey, VA Form 0745. OMB Control Number: 2900-0548. Type of Review: Extension of a...

  17. 76 FR 24570 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance-Change of Address Statement...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-02

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance--Change of Address Statement... Mortgage Life Insurance. DATES: Written comments and recommendations on the proposed collection of... information technology. Title: Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance--Change of Address Statement, VA Form 29-0563...

  18. Veterans Health Administration: Actions Needed to Better Recruit and Retain Clinical and Administrative Staff

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-03-22

    VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION Actions Needed to Better Recruit and Retain Clinical and Administrative Staff Statement of...the Subcommittee on Health, Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, House of Representatives. March 22, 2017 VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION Actions...Needed to Better Recruit and Retain Clinical and Administrative Staff What GAO Found Challenges in recruiting and retaining both clinical and human

  19. 77 FR 66069 - Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) No-Health Period Extension

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-01

    ..., particularly disabled veterans who may not qualify for private life insurance due to their disabilities. In... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 9 RIN 2900-AO24 Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) No-Health Period Extension... Life Insurance (VGLI) to extend to 240 days the current 120-day ``no-health'' period during which...

  20. 77 FR 7243 - Proposed Information Collection (Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-10

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Operation Enduring Freedom/ Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans... ``OMB Control No. 2900-0728.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans Health Needs Assessment, VA Form 10-21091. OMB Control Number: 2900-0728. Type of...

  1. Veterans' Education Benefits: Enhanced Guidance and Collaboration Could Improve Administration of the Post-9/11 GI Bill Program. GAO-11-356R

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, George A.

    2011-01-01

    With the passage of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008 (Post- 9/11 GI Bill), Congress created a comprehensive education benefit program for veterans, service members, and their dependents pursuing postsecondary education. Since implementation, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has provided just over $5.7 billion for…

  2. Monitoring of Urate-Lowering Therapy Among US Veterans Following the 2012 American College of Rheumatology Guidelines for Management of Gout.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Jonathan C; Wallace, Jessica L; Bryant, Candace L; Salvig, Brent E; Fourakre, T Neal; Stone, William J

    2017-04-01

    With the prevalence of and hospitalizations for gout increasing, optimizing care for patients with gout is imperative. The 2012 American College of Rheumatology gout guidelines emphasize that timely monitoring is key to achieving serum urate (SUA) goals. Few studies have examined this metric following the 2012 update, and to our knowledge, none have examined a veteran population. To evaluate adherence to urate-lowering therapy (ULT) monitoring guidelines in a veteran population. This is a single-center, multisite, retrospective chart review of US veterans receiving ULT for gout within the VA (Veterans Affairs) Tennessee Valley Healthcare System from January 1, 2013, to June 30, 2015. The primary end point was percentage of patients with a SUA within 6 months of initial xanthine oxidase inhibitor prescription. Secondary end points included percentage of patients with SUA <6 mg/dL and percentage of patients with uptitration following SUA above goal. A total of 601 patients met inclusion criteria for the study; after application of exclusion criteria, 505 were analyzed. Of these, 295 patients (58%) did not have a SUA drawn within 6 months, and 162 patients (32%) reached the end of the study period without SUA measured. Of 226 patients with SUA above goal on initial check, 64 (28%) had timely dose adjustment, whereas 143 patients (63%) had no adjustment. A total of 161 patients (32%) had a SUA at goal within the study period. Rates of ULT monitoring at a major VA medical center were suboptimal, and improved adherence to guideline recommendations is needed.

  3. A Core Course on Veterans' Health in an Online RN to BSN Program: Preparing Nurses to Work with Veterans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keavney, Elaine C.

    2015-01-01

    The Joining Forces Initiative challenges nursing programs throughout the country to develop curriculum that addresses the unique healthcare issues facing veterans. It is imperative that Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) students acquire the knowledge that will help them to care for veterans in all areas of nursing practice. This article…

  4. A Randomized, Controlled Multisite Study of Behavioral Interventions for Veterans with Mental Illness and Antipsychotic Medication-Associated Obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Zachary D; Kwan, Crystal L; Gelberg, Hollie A; Arnold, Irina Y; Chamberlin, Valery; Rosen, Jennifer A; Shah, Chandresh; Nguyen, Charles T; Hellemann, Gerhard; Aragaki, Dixie R; Kunkel, Charles F; Lewis, Melissa M; Sachinvala, Neena; Sonza, Patrick A; Pierre, Joseph M; Ames, Donna

    2017-04-01

    Weight gain and other metabolic sequelae of antipsychotic medications can lead to medication non-adherence, reduced quality of life, increased costs, and premature mortality. Of the approaches to address this, behavioral interventions are less invasive, cost less, and can result in sustained long-term benefits. We investigated behavioral weight management interventions for veterans with mental illness across four medical centers within the Veterans Affairs (VA) Healthcare System. We conducted a 12-month, multi-site extension of our previous randomized, controlled study, comparing treatment and control groups. Veterans (and some non-veteran women) diagnosed with mental illness, overweight (defined as having a BMI over 25), and required ongoing antipsychotic therapy. One group received "Lifestyle Balance" (LB; modified from the Diabetes Prevention Program) consisting of classes and individual nutritional counseling with a dietitian. A second group received less intensive "Usual Care" (UC) consisting of weight monitoring and provision of self-help. Participants completed anthropometric and nutrition assessments weekly for 8 weeks, then monthly. Psychiatric, behavioral, and physical assessments were conducted at baseline and months 2, 6, and 12. Metabolic and lipid laboratory tests were performed quarterly. Participants in both groups lost weight. LB participants had a greater decrease in average waist circumference [F(1,1244) = 11.9, p Behavioral interventions specifically designed for individuals with mental illness can be effective for weight loss and improve dietary behaviors. "Lifestyle Balance" integrates well with VA healthcare's patient-centered "Whole Health" approach. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT01052714.

  5. Nicotine Dependence and Its Risk Factors Among Users of Veterans Health Services, 2008-2009

    OpenAIRE

    Tsai, Jack; Edens, Ellen L.; Rosenheck, Robert A.

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and is disproportionately higher among veterans than nonveterans. We examined the prevalence of nicotine dependence and its associated risk factors among veterans who used health services in the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system. Methods Using a case-control design, we compared all VA health service users in fiscal year 2008-2009 (N = 5,031,381) who received a nicotine dependence diagnosis with...

  6. IN-HOME EXPOSURE THERAPY FOR VETERANS WITH POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-10-01

    PE that is office -based telehealth (OBT; Veterans come to the clinic to meet with the therapist over telehealth), (2) PE delivered via home -based...randomized to receive In- Home , In-Person (IHIP); 51 (33.1%) were randomized to receive Office -Based Telehealth (OBT); and 52 (33.8%) were randomized to...Statement of Work Project Title: “In- Home Exposure Therapy for Veterans with PTSD” Primary Institution: Department of Veteran Affairs VA San Diego

  7. Distance to Veterans Administration Medical Centers as a Barrier to Specialty Care for Homeless Women Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gawron, Lori M; Pettey, Warren B P; Redd, Andrew M; Suo, Ying; Gundlapalli, Adi V

    2017-01-01

    Homeless women Veterans have a high prevalence of chronic mental and physical conditions that necessitate frequent healthcare visits, but travel burdens to specialty services may be overwhelming to navigate for this population, especially for those in rural settings. Access to specialty care is a key priority in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) and understanding the geographic distribution and rural designation of this population in relation to medical centers (VAMC) can assist in care coordination. We identified 41,747 women Veterans age 18-44y with administrative evidence of homelessness in the VHA anytime during 2002-2015. We found 7% live in rural settings and 29% live >40miles from a VAMC. The mean travel distance for homeless women Veterans with a rural designation to a VAMC specialty center was 107 miles. Developing interventions to overcome this travel burden and engage vulnerable Veterans in necessary care can improve overall health outcomes for this high-risk population.

  8. Impact of Supported Housing on Social Relationships Among Homeless Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connell, Maria J; Kasprow, Wesley J; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2017-02-01

    This study examined social network structure and function among a sample of 460 homeless veterans who participated in an experimental trial of the Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supported Housing (HUD-VASH) program. Participants were randomly assigned to HUD-VASH (housing subsidies and case management), case management only, or standard care. Mixed-model longitudinal analysis was used to compare treatment groups on social network outcomes over 18 months. Veterans in HUD-VASH reported significantly greater increases in social support than veterans in the two other groups, as well as greater frequency of contacts, availability of tangible and emotional support, and satisfaction with nonkin relationships over time. These gains largely involved relationships with providers and other veterans encountered in treatment. Supported housing may play a pivotal role in fostering constructive new relationships with persons associated with service programs but may have a more limited impact on natural support networks.

  9. Homeless Veterans Eligible for Medicaid Under the Affordable Care Act.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Kasprow, Wesley J; Culhane, Dennis; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2015-12-01

    Among homeless veterans and those at risk of homelessness currently enrolled in Veterans Affairs (VA) health care, this study examined the proportion likely to become eligible for Medicaid in 2014 and their health needs. A total of 114,497 homeless and at-risk veterans were categorized into three groups: currently covered by Medicaid, likely to become eligible for Medicaid, and not likely. Seventy-eight percent of the sample was determined to be likely to become eligible for Medicaid in states that expand Medicaid. Compared with veterans not likely to become eligible for Medicaid, those likely to become eligible were less likely to have general medical and psychiatric conditions and to have a VA service-connected disability but more likely to have substance use disorders. Programs serving homeless and at-risk veterans should anticipate the potential interplay between VA health care and the expansion of Medicaid in states that implement the expansion.

  10. Center for Women Veterans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... various organizations and individuals are doing to challenge perceptions about women Veterans. Learn more » #VeteranOfTheDay - Nominate a Veteran Today! Veteran of the Day has been a tradition on VA’s social media pages for more than two years now. This ...

  11. The Veterans Choice Program (VCP): Program Implementation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-05

    to VACAA and challenges encountered during implantation of the law. Table 1 provides major highlights pertaining to the Veterans Choice Program (VCP...outpatient medical, surgical, and mental healthcare; pharmaceuticals; pregnancy and delivery services; dental care; and durable medical equipment, and

  12. Benchmarking in Student Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosier, Robert E.; Schwarzmueller, Gary J.

    2002-01-01

    Discusses the use of benchmarking in student affairs, focusing on issues related to student housing. Provides examples of how benchmarking has influenced administrative practice at many institutions. (EV)

  13. 38 CFR 12.1 - Designee cases; competent veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Facility Upon Death, Or Discharge, Or Unauthorized Absence, and of Funds and Effects Found on Facility § 12... Department of Veterans Affairs to deliver his or her funds and effects in event of death. He or she may also designate an alternate to whom delivery will be made if the first designee fails or refuses to accept...

  14. A Comparison of Homeless Male Veterans in Metropolitan and Micropolitan Areas in Nebraska: A Methodological Caveat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Ramaswamy, Sriram; Bhatia, Subhash C; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2015-12-01

    This study explored differences between homeless male veterans in metropolitan and micropolitan cities in Nebraska on sociodemographic, housing, clinical, and psychosocial characteristics as well as health service use. A convenience sample of 151 homeless male veterans (112 metropolitan, 39 micropolitan) were recruited from Veterans Affairs facilities and area shelters in Omaha, Lincoln, Grand Island, and Hastings in Nebraska. Research staff conducted structured interviews with homeless veterans. Results showed that compared to homeless veterans in metropolitans, those in micropolitans were more likely to be White, unmarried, living in transitional settings, and were far more transient but reported greater social support and housing satisfaction. Veterans in micropolitans also reported more medical problems, diagnoses of anxiety and personality disorders, and unexpectedly, were more likely to report using various health services and less travel time for services. Together, these findings suggest access to homeless and health services for veterans in micropolitan areas may be facilitated through Veterans Affairs facilities and community providers that work in close proximity to one another. Many homeless veterans in these areas are transient, making them a difficult population to study and serve. Innovative ways to provide outreach to homeless veterans in micropolitan and more rural areas are needed.

  15. Fertility Counseling and Treatment for Certain Veterans and Spouses. Interim final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-19

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) amends its regulation regarding fertility counseling and treatment available to certain veterans and spouses. VA currently provides certain infertility services other than in vitro fertilization (IVF) to veterans as part of the medical benefits package. IVF is the process of fertilization by manually fertilizing an egg, and then transferring the embryo to the uterus. This interim final rulemaking adds a new section authorizing IVF for a veteran with a service-connected disability that results in the inability of the veteran to procreate without the use of fertility treatment. In addition, we add a new section stating that VA may provide fertility counseling and treatment using assisted reproductive technologies (ART), including IVF, to a spouse of a veteran with a service-connected disability that results in the inability of the veteran to procreate without the use of fertility treatment. VA will provide ART treatment, including IVF, to these veterans and spouses as specified in the Continuing Appropriations and Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2017, and Zika Response and Preparedness Act to the extent such services are consistent with the services available to enrolled veterans under the medical benefits package.

  16. Differential impact of combat on postdeployment symptoms in female and male veterans of iraq and afghanistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afari, Niloofar; Pittman, James; Floto, Elizabeth; Owen, Laura; Buttner, Melissa; Hossain, Nazia; Baker, Dewleen G; Lindamer, Laurie; Lohr, James B

    2015-03-01

    We aimed to describe differences in combat experience for male and female veterans and characterize differential effects on postdeployment physical and mental health symptoms, including aggression. Retrospective cross-sectional health screening data from 554 Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans who enrolled for Veterans Affairs health care in San Diego were examined including measures of combat experience, pain intensity, traumatic brain injury symptoms, military sexual trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, alcohol use, and aggression. Although male veterans (n = 458) experienced significantly higher rates of combat than female veterans (n = 96), both experienced similar levels of postdeployment post-traumatic stress disorder and depression symptoms as well self-reported aggressive behavior compared to male veterans. Female veterans had higher rates of military sexual trauma and lower alcohol consumption than male veterans. All Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans returning from deployment may benefit from broad-based screening of physical and mental health symptoms, beyond those currently mandated by Veterans Affairs, including anger and aggression. Reprint & Copyright © 2015 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  17. Evidence of poorer life-course mental health outcomes among veterans of the Korean War cohort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Matthew Stephen; Fulton, Lawrence

    2010-03-01

    Comparing the outcomes of veterans who served in Korea and those who served elsewhere, we examined the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), other mental health conditions, psychiatric treatment locations, and six mental health well-being measures. The analytic sample consisted of nationally representative data from the 2001 National Survey of Veterans (NSV). Analyses included multiple logistic regressions that controlled for sociodemographic characteristics. Korean era veterans in the NSV (n = 4030): 1498 served in Korea; 2532 elsewhere during the era. Veterans who served in Korea have notably poorer mental health than those who served elsewhere. These results suggest higher resource needs among aging Korean era veterans. Clinicians, policy makers and the Department of Veterans Affairs should focus on mental health services to older veterans.

  18. An innovative approach to treating combat veterans with PTSD at risk for suicide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendin, Herbert

    2014-10-01

    Suicide rates among military personnel had a significant drop in 2013, but there is no evidence of a drop among veterans. The problem of suicide among combat veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) remains a source of concern. The Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs are now calling for innovative treatment approaches to the problem. A short-term psychodynamic therapy presented here may be able to fill that need by dissipating the guilt from veterans' combat-related actions that leads to suicidal behavior. The treatment showed promise of success with veterans of the war in Vietnam. Preliminary work with combat veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan indicates that it may be equally successful in treating them. Basic aspects of the psychodynamic approach could be incorporated into current therapies and should improve their ability to treat veterans with PTSD at risk for suicide. © 2014 The American Association of Suicidology.

  19. Anxiety disorders, physical illnesses, and health care utilization in older male veterans with Parkinson disease and comorbid depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Salah U; Amspoker, Amber B; Calleo, Jessica S; Kunik, Mark E; Marsh, Laura

    2012-12-01

    This study examined the rates of anxiety and depressive disorders, physical illnesses, and health service use in male patients 55 years or older with a diagnosis of Parkinson disease who were seen at least twice at the 10 medical centers in the Veterans Affairs Healthcare Network of the South Central region of the United States. Of the 273 male patients diagnosed between October 1, 1997, and September 30, 2009, 62 (22.7%) had a depressive disorder. The overall prevalence of anxiety disorders was 12.8%; patients with comorbid depression had a 5-fold greater prevalence of anxiety disorders than those without depression (35.5% vs 6.2%, Pdisease and comorbid depression are more likely to have anxiety disorders and several physical illnesses, to be using antipsychotic and dementia medicines, and to have increased health service utilization than those without depression.

  20. Which Homeless Veterans Benefit From a Peer Mentor and How?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Resnik, Linda; Ekerholm, Sarah; Johnson, Erin E; Ellison, Marsha L; O'Toole, Thomas P

    2017-09-01

    Veterans Affairs (VA) is expanding peer support. Research is limited on Veterans' perspective on benefits from peer services. We describe homeless Veteran perceptions of value and examine characteristics associated with benefit. From a sample of Veterans in a multisite randomized control trial, we studied addition of peers in VA Primary Care and homeless-oriented primary care clinics. We used qualitative methods to study the perceptions of peer services among a subsample of homeless Veterans. Quantitative methods were used to validate findings in both samples. Sixty-five percent of the subsample and 83% of the full sample benefited from a peer mentor. Participants who benefited had more peer visits and minutes of intervention (p<.05), were more likely to be minority, and were less likely to have posttraumatic stress disorder. The majority of Veteran participants in this study benefited from receiving peer mentor intervention. African American Veterans were more likely to benefit and Veterans with PTSD were less likely to benefit. Client endorsement of the peer's role influenced outcomes. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Characteristics and Health Needs of Veterans in Jails and Prisons: What We Know and Do Not Know about Incarcerated Women Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCall, Janice D; Tsai, Jack

    2017-12-04

    The majority of U.S. veterans in prisons and local jails are men, but incarcerated women veterans remain an important and understudied group. This study reported differences in sociodemographic, health, and criminal justice characteristics using Veterans Affairs (VA) administrative data on a national sample of 30,964 incarcerated veterans (30,440 men and 524 women) who received outreach from the VA Health Care for Reentry Veterans program between 2007 and 2011. Descriptive statistics and multivariable logistic regressions determined gender and racial differences in this population. Compared with incarcerated veterans who were men, incarcerated women veterans were younger (d = 0.68), had significantly lower lifetime arrests (AOR, 0.65; p problems, hypertension, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and seizure disorder, and were more likely to receive a preliminary diagnosis of mood disorder than men. Women were more likely to have received VA benefits, used VA health care before, and be willing to use VA services after release. A few important differences emerged when stratified by race. These findings suggest that incarcerated women veterans are interested in VA health care services, but there is lack of information about women's health needs through the Health Care for Reentry Veterans program. The inclusion of Health Care for Reentry Veterans screening questions about women's health issues may support the VA's interests to better engage women veterans in care. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  2. Examining the relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder and social participation among Veterans with spinal cord injuries and disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etingen, Bella; Locatelli, Sara M; Miskevics, Scott; LaVela, Sherri L

    2017-07-26

    The objectives of this study were to examine differences in social participation among Veterans with spinal cord injuries/disorders with and without post-traumatic stress disorder, and determine if lower social participation was independently associated with having post-traumatic stress disorder. A cross-sectional mailed national survey was sent to a national sample of Veterans with spinal cord injuries/disorders who received prior-year Veterans Affairs healthcare. Surveys provided data on: demographics, health conditions, injury characteristics, and social participation. Analyses included bivariate comparisons, and multivariate logistic regression to determine if lower social participation was independently associated with post-traumatic stress disorder. Veterans with (vs. without) post-traumatic stress disorder (n = 896) reported lower social participation (40.2 vs. 43.9, p post-traumatic stress disorder, while a greater number of health conditions (OR = 1.43, 95% CI: 1.25-1.64, p post-traumatic stress disorder (OR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.90-0.98, p = 0.003). Results indicate post-traumatic stress disorder is associated with lower social participation in Veterans with spinal cord injuries/disorders, independent of other factors that may impact participation. Efforts to screen for and treat post-traumatic stress disorder among persons with spinal cord injuries/disorders, regardless of injury-specific factors, are needed to improve participation. Implications for Rehabilitation Individuals with spinal cord injuries/disorders often have post-traumatic stress disorder; in Veterans with spinal cord injuries/disorders this may be compounded by trauma incurred through military experiences. Social participation, an important aspect of rehabilitation and community integration following spinal cord injury or disorder, may be hindered by symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. Our data show that post-traumatic stress disorder is associated with lower

  3. Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) no-health period extension. Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-01

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is issuing this final rule that amends the regulations governing eligibility for Veterans' Group Life Insurance (VGLI) to extend to 240 days the current 120-day "no-health" period during which veterans can apply for VGLI without proving that they are in good health for insurance purposes. The purpose of this rule is to increase the opportunities for disabled veterans to enroll in VGLI, some of whom would not qualify for VGLI coverage under existing provisions. This document adopts as a final rule, without change, the proposed rule published in the Federal Register on June 25, 2012.

  4. Grants for transportation of veterans in highly rural areas. Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-02

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) amends its regulations to establish a new program to provide grants to eligible entities to assist veterans in highly rural areas through innovative transportation services to travel to VA medical centers, and to otherwise assist in providing transportation services in connection with the provision of VA medical care to these veterans, in compliance with section 307 of title III of the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010. This final rule establishes procedures for evaluating grant applications under the new grant program, and otherwise administering the new grant program.

  5. Validation of self-reported veteran status among two sheltered homeless populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metraux, Stephen; Stino, Magdi; Culhane, Dennis P

    2014-01-01

    We assessed the accuracy of self-reported veteran status among sheltered homeless adults to assess the reliability of using self-report to determine the number of veterans in homeless populations and examine whether there are demographic correlates to inaccurate reporting of veteran status. Records on 5,860 sheltered adults from Columbus, Ohio, and 16,346 sheltered adults from New York City (NYC) were matched with U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) records. We analyzed the agreement between veteran self-reporting and official records using descriptive measures, diagnostic tests, and logistic regression. The degree of concordance was moderate. Using VA records rather than self-report data to determine veteran status increased homeless veteran prevalence rates by 27% in Columbus and 39% in NYC. Veterans with discordant veteran status (i.e., false positive or false negative) showed lower levels of services use in the VA (both cities) and in the municipal shelter system (NYC only). Younger veterans and women were at higher risk of not being identified as veterans. Administrative records can help to more accurately identify homeless veterans and to connect them to available services and benefits.

  6. Mental Health, Quality of Life, and Health Functioning in Women Veterans: Differential Outcomes Associated with Military and Civilian Sexual Assault

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suris, Alina; Lind, Lisa; Kashner, T. Michael; Borman, Patricia D.

    2007-01-01

    The present study examined psychiatric, physical, and quality-of-life functioning in a sample of 270 women veterans receiving outpatient treatment at a Veterans Affairs medical center. Participants were interviewed regarding their civilian (CSA) and military sexual assault (MSA) histories, and data regarding quality of life and health outcomes…

  7. Characteristics and VA Health Care Utilization of U.S. Veterans Who Completed Suicide in Oregon between 2000 and 2005

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basham, Chandra; Denneson, Lauren M.; Millet, Lisa; Shen, Xun; Duckart, Jonathan; Dobscha, Steven K.

    2011-01-01

    Oregon Violent Death Reporting System data were linked with Veterans Affairs (VA) administrative data to identify and describe veterans who completed suicide in Oregon from 2000 to 2005 (n = 968), and to describe their VA health care utilization in the year prior to death. Twenty-two percent had received health care in the VA system. Of these, 57%…

  8. For Homeless Veterans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... for VA health care services and are experiencing homelessness. VA case managers may connect these Veterans with ... Veterans who have experienced long-term or repeated homelessness. As of Sept. 30, 2015, HUD had allocated ...

  9. Paralyzed Veterans of America

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Clothing Donate a Vehicle Matching Gifts Buy PVA Gear Donate Donate Now Give Monthly Planned Giving View ... PVA1946 National Veterans Wheelchair Games App Download Now TOP Contact Us Paralyzed Veterans of America 801 Eighteenth ...

  10. The effect of post-traumatic-stress-disorder on intra-operative analgesia in a veteran population during cataract procedures carried out using retrobulbar or topical anesthesia: a retrospective study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapoport, Yuna; Wayman, Laura L; Chomsky, Amy S

    2017-06-07

    A growing proportion of veterans treated at the Veterans Health Administration (VA) have a history of post-traumatic-stress-disorder (PTSD), and there exists a higher rate of PTSD amongst veterans than the general population. The purpose of this study is to determine the correlation between PTSD and intra-operative analgesia, intra-operative time, and anesthesia type for cataract surgery in a veteran population. Secondary objectives are to determine if patient age, and first or second eye surgery affect intra-operative pain control or are correlated with type of anesthesia modality. A retrospective study of 330 cataract surgeries performed by resident physicians between January and September 2012 at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center Tennessee Valley Healthcare System, Nashville and Murfreesboro Campuses was completed. Three hundred and thirty veteran patients were selected if their cataract surgery was performed between January and September 2012. Combined cases were excluded. The primary outcome evaluated was intra-operative analgesia. Secondary outcomes included history of post-traumatic-stress-disorder, anesthesia type, first or second eye, pain control, intra-operative heart rate and blood pressure, age, and case complexity. Data was analyzed using an unpaired two-sample Welch's t-test assuming unequal variance and Z test of comparison of proportions. Patients with post-traumatic-stress-disorder reported higher pain scores, had longer operative times, and were more likely to have received a retrobulbar block. Operative time was not associated with an increased pain score, irrespective of anesthesia type, when controlled for PTSD. Complex cases had longer operative times, more sedation, and higher pain scores. P Post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety are more prevalent in the veteran population. Our data suggests that a history of post-traumatic-stress-disorder was correlated with higher pain scores, longer operative times, and with having received a

  11. 75 FR 61621 - Charges Billed to Third Parties for Prescription Drugs Furnished by VA to a Veteran for a...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-06

    ... reasonable charges for medical care or services (including the provision of prescription drugs) from a third... AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 17 RIN 2900-AN15 Charges Billed to Third Parties for Prescription Drugs Furnished by...: Final rule. SUMMARY: This document amends the medical regulations of the Department of Veterans Affairs...

  12. 77 FR 19975 - VA Acquisition Regulation: Simplified Acquisition Procedures for Health-Care Resources (Section...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-03

    ... Service (003A2A), Office of Acquisition, Logistics and Construction, Department of Veterans Affairs, 810... concept in acquisitions that all offerors are treated fairly. Consideration may be given to updating the...

  13. Grants for the Rural Veterans Coordination Pilot (RVCP). Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-02-25

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) adopts as a final rule, without change, the proposal to establish a pilot program known as the Rural Veterans Coordination Pilot (RVCP). The RVCP will provide grants to eligible community-based organizations and local and State government entities to be used by these organizations and entities to assist veterans and their families who are transitioning from military service to civilian life in rural or underserved communities. VA will use information obtained through the pilot program to evaluate the effectiveness of using community-based organizations and local and State government entities to improve the provision of services to transitioning veterans and their families. Five RVCP grants will be awarded for a 2-year period in discrete locations pursuant to a Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA) to be published in the Federal Register.

  14. Homeless female U.S. veterans in a national supported housing program: comparison of individual characteristics and outcomes with male veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Rosenheck, Robert A; Kane, Vincent

    2014-08-01

    As more women serve in the U.S. military, the proportion of females among homeless veterans is increasing. The current study compares the individual characteristics and 1-year outcomes of homeless female and male veterans in the Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program nationally. Administrative data on 43,853 veterans (10.69% females; 89.31% males) referred to HUD-VASH were analyzed for gender differences at baseline and over a 1-year period. Homeless female veterans were younger, had shorter homeless and incarceration histories, and were less likely to have substance use disorders than men. However, despite being less likely to report combat exposure, female veterans were more likely to have posttraumatic stress disorder. Homeless female veterans were also much more likely to have dependent children with them and to plan to live with family members in supported housing. Once admitted to HUD-VASH, there were no gender differences in attrition or main housing outcomes. Case managers were faster to admit female veterans to the program, reported better working alliances, and provided more services related to employment and income than male veterans. These findings suggest homeless female veterans may have certain strengths, including being younger, less involved in the criminal justice system, and more adept at relating to professional and natural supports; but special attention to noncombat trauma and family-oriented services may be needed.

  15. Comparing VA and private sector healthcare costs for end-stage renal disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hynes, Denise M; Stroupe, Kevin T; Fischer, Michael J; Reda, Domenic J; Manning, Willard; Browning, Margaret M; Huo, Zhiping; Saban, Karen; Kaufman, James S

    2012-02-01

    Healthcare for end-stage renal disease (ESRD) is intensive, expensive, and provided in both the public and private sector. Using a societal perspective, we examined healthcare costs and health outcomes for Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) ESRD patients comparing those who received hemodialysis care at VA versus private sector facilities. Dialysis patients were recruited from 8 VA medical centers from 2001 through 2003 and followed for 12 months in a prospective cohort study. Patient demographics, clinical characteristics, quality of life, healthcare use, and cost data were collected. Healthcare data included utilization (VA), claims (Medicare), and patient self-report. Costs included VA calculated costs, Medicare dialysis facility reports and reimbursement rates, and patient self-report. Multivariable regression was used to compare costs between patients receiving dialysis at VA versus private sector facilities. The cohort comprised 334 patients: 170 patients in the VA dialysis group and 164 patients in the private sector group. The VA dialysis group had more comorbidities at baseline, outpatient and emergency visits, prescriptions, and longer hospital stays; they also had more conservative anemia management and lower baseline urea reduction ratio (67% vs. 72%; Pprivate sector dialysis group (Pprivate sector settings is critical in informing health policy options for patients with complex chronic illnesses such as ESRD.

  16. Predictors of Incarceration of Veterans Participating in U.S. Veterans' Courts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, R Scott; Stolar, Andrea G; McGuire, James F; Mittakanti, Krithika; Clark, Sean; Coonan, Loretta A; Graham, David P

    2017-02-01

    Significant variability exists regarding the criteria and procedures used by different veterans' courts (VCs) across the country. Limited guidance is available regarding which VC model has the most successful outcomes. The purpose of this study was to examine factors associated with incarceration during VC participation. This study used data for 1,224 veterans collected from the HOMES (Homeless Operations Management and Evaluation System) database of the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as data from a national phone survey inventory of all U.S. VCs. To identify variables associated with incarceration during VC participation, four backward conditional logistic regressions were performed. The following variables were associated with higher rates of incarceration because of a veteran's noncompletion of the VC program: charges of probation or parole violations, longer stays in the VC program, end of VC participation because of incarceration for a new arrest or case transfer by the legal system, and requiring mental health follow-up but not undergoing treatment. The following variables were associated with lower rates of incarceration: stable housing and participating in a VC program that referred veterans for substance abuse treatment. This study offers VCs a thorough review of an extensive set of recidivism data. Further investigation is necessary to understand the impact of VCs.

  17. Predictors of Mortality in Older Homeless Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schinka, John A; Curtiss, Glenn; Leventhal, Katherine; Bossarte, Robert M; Lapcevic, William; Casey, Roger

    2017-10-01

    In this analysis of a cohort of older homeless veterans, we examined psychosocial, health, housing, and employment characteristics to identify predictors of mortality. Our sample of 3,620 older veterans entered Veteran Affairs homeless programs in years 2000-2003. Fifteen variables from a structured interview described this sample and served as predictors. National Death Index data for years 2000-2011 were used to ascertain death. Survival table analyses were conducted to estimate and plot cumulative survival functions. To determine predictors and estimate hazard functions, Cox proportional hazards regression analysis was conducted. Five variables (presence of a serious health issue, hospitalization for alcohol abuse, alcohol dependency, unemployment for 3 years, and age 60+) were associated with increased risk of death; three (non-White, drug dependency, and dental problems) were associated with reduced risk. A risk score, based on total unit-weighted risk for all eight predictors, was used to identify three groups that were found to differ significantly in mortality. These analyses underline the jeopardy faced by older homeless veterans in terms of early death. We were able to identify several variables associated with mortality; more importantly, we were able to show that a risk score based on status for these variables was significantly related to survival.

  18. Predictors of homeless veterans' irregular discharge status from a domiciliary care program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wenzel, S L; Bakhtiar, L; Caskey, N H; Hardie, E; Redford, C; Sadler, N; Gelberg, L

    1995-01-01

    This study addresses the relationship of homeless veterans' discharge status from a domiciliary care program to biopsychosocial characteristics presented at admission into the program. Hypotheses were that younger age, less education, and substance abuse or psychiatric disorder would predict an irregular discharge. Research participants were 367 homeless male veterans who had been admitted to a domiciliary care program at the West Los Angeles Veterans Affairs Medical Center for treatment of medical, psychiatric, or substance disorders. Status of veterans' program discharge (regular or irregular) served as the outcome measure. Logistic regression analysis revealed that irregular discharge from the program was more likely among veterans who were black, who had poor employment histories, or who had problems with alcohol. Results are discussed in light of the need to maintain homeless veterans in treatment programs so that they can achieve maximum benefit from available programs.

  19. Understanding the health of veterans who are homeless: A review of the literature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Jillian; Lee, Rebecca C; Martsolf, Donna

    2017-09-01

    The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development estimates that almost 50,000 veterans are homeless on any given night. Homeless veterans are at greater risk of health disparities than their housed counterparts due to the multifactorial nature of their health and social needs. The Department of Veterans Affairs, in collaboration with more than a dozen other federal agencies, has concentrated efforts to improve the health of this vulnerable population while enacting a plan to eliminate veteran homelessness within the near future. Understanding the unique health needs of veterans who are homeless allows the profession of nursing to better support these efforts. The purpose of this literature review was to provide comprehensive knowledge to nurses about the health of homeless veterans for their use in clinical practice, research, and in contributing to the positive health outcomes for this vulnerable population. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Applying behavior change theory to technology promoting veteran mental health care seeking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whealin, Julia M; Kuhn, Eric; Pietrzak, Robert H

    2014-11-01

    Despite the availability of effective mental health interventions, the vast majority of veterans with a mental disorder underutilize psychological services. Contemporary research has revealed that several factors such as low education, stigma, stoicism, lack of knowledge, and negative beliefs about mental health services are associated with veterans' underutilization of services. In this article, the authors provide an overview of factors that affect symptomatic veterans' decisions about whether to seek mental health services. Second, they describe the theory of planned behavior (Ajzen & Fishbein, 1980), a useful model for understanding mental health care seeking that can inform the development of technology-based interventions designed to increase veterans' willingness to seek psychological services. Third, the authors describe the development of Considering Professional Help, a personalized web-based tool developed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, which has been designed to promote mental health care seeking in veterans with mental health problems. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved).

  1. Increased Mortality Among Older Veterans Admitted to VA Homelessness Programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schinka, John A; Bossarte, Robert M; Curtiss, Glenn; Lapcevic, William A; Casey, Roger J

    2016-04-01

    National Death Index data were examined to describe mortality patterns among older veterans who are homeless. Homelessness and health care records from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs were used to identify old (ages 55-59) and older (ages ≥60) veterans who were (N=4,475) or were not (N=20,071) homeless. Survival functions and causes of death of the two samples over an 11-year follow-up period were compared. Substantially more veterans who were homeless (34.9%) died compared with the control sample (18.2%). Veterans who were homeless were approximately 2.5 years younger at time of death compared with the control sample. Older veterans who were homeless had the lowest survival rate (58%). No disease category appeared to be critical in reducing survival time. Suicide was twice as frequent in the homeless (.4%) versus the control (.2%) sample. Older veterans who were homeless experienced excess mortality and increased suicide risk.

  2. Homelessness and money mismanagement in Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elbogen, Eric B; Sullivan, Connor P; Wolfe, James; Wagner, Henry Ryan; Beckham, Jean C

    2013-12-01

    We examined the empirical link between money mismanagement and subsequent homelessness among veterans. We used a random sample of Iraq and Afghanistan War era veterans from the National Post-Deployment Adjustment Survey in 2009-2011. Veterans were randomly selected from a roster of all US military service members in Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation Enduring Freedom who were separated from active duty or in the Reserves/National Guard. Veterans (n = 1090) from 50 states and all military branches completed 2 waves of data collection 1 year apart (79% retention rate). Thirty percent reported money mismanagement (e.g., bouncing or forging a check, going over one's credit limit, falling victim to a money scam in the past year). Multivariate analysis revealed money mismanagement (odds ratio [OR] = 4.09, 95% CI = 1.87, 8.94) was associated with homelessness in the next year, as were arrest history (OR = 2.65, 95% CI = 1.33, 5.29), mental health diagnosis (OR = 2.59, 95% CI = 1.26, 5.33), and income (OR = 0.30, 95% CI = 0.13, 0.71). Money mismanagement, reported by a substantial number of veterans, was related to a higher rate of subsequent homelessness. The findings have implications for policymakers and clinicians, suggesting that financial education programs offered by the US Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs may be targeted to effectively address veteran homelessness.

  3. Veterans Affairs: Presumptive Service Connection and Disability Compensation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-03-28

    associated with nutritional deficiencies such as osteoporosis. Section 106 of P.L. 110-389 provides a presumptive service connection for...tissue sarcoma (soft tissue sarcoma is a cancer of soft tissues such as muscles, tendons , and blood vessels). Does not include osteosarcoma... tendon sheath; Malignant schwannoma, including malignant schwannoma with rhabdomyoblastic differentiation (malignant Triton tumor); glandular and

  4. Mentoring health information professionals in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lloyd, Susan S; Fenton, Susan H

    2008-04-07

    As a major employer of health information professionals, the VA faces significant recruitment and retention challenges. The authors evaluated mentoring as a retention tool through a review of existing literature and the retrospective review of a VA health information management mentoring program. The literature review showed a link between employer mentorship and employee retention, regardless of the nature and structure of the mentoring relationship. Most organizations support employees who are willing to serve as mentors through increased compensation, recognition, and other types of support. No literature was found that studied retention rates for more than three years after a mentoring experience. The review of the VA mentoring program showed increased retention in the three years following enrollment in the program, but the increase was not statistically significant. The review did not demonstrate improvement in retention over a seven-year period. The combined evaluation gives mixed findings for mentorship as a retention tool and demonstrates the need for more research on the topic.

  5. Sleep characteristics of Veterans Affairs Adult Day Health Care participants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Jaime M; Martin, Jennifer L

    2015-01-01

    Addressing sleep disturbance can help to slow functional decline, delay nursing home admission, and improve overall health among older adults; however, sleep is not widely studied in high-risk older adults such as Adult Day Health Care (ADHC) participants. Sixty-eight ADHC participants were interviewed for sleep disturbance using a 28-item screening questionnaire. More than two thirds (n = 48, 70.6%) reported one or more characteristics of poor sleep, and 38% of participants met basic criteria for insomnia. Individuals with insomnia attended ADHC less frequently, reported worse sleep quality and shorter sleep duration, and were more likely to endorse trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, and waking up too early (ps sleep disturbance within ADHC participants.

  6. Alcohol Consumption among Urban, Suburban, and Rural Veterans Affairs Outpatients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Emily C.; McFarland, Lynne V.; Nelson, Karin M.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: United States rural residents tend toward poorer health than urban residents. Although alcohol use is associated with multiple medical conditions and can be reduced via brief primary care-based interventions, it is unknown whether alcohol consumption differs by rurality among primary care patients. We sought to describe alcohol…

  7. Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies: FY2009 Appropriations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-02-25

    Marshall County, and Wiregrass, AL; Matanuska-Susitna Borough area, AK; Ozark, and White County, AR; East Bay- Alameda County area, CA; Summerfield, FL... Rio Rancho, NM; Robeson County, and Rutherford County, NC; Grand Forks County, ND; Gallia County, OH; Altus, Craig County, Enid, and Jay, OK; Giles

  8. Public affairs plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1994-09-01

    The purpose of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Public Affairs Plan is to establish goals for the Fiscal Year 1995 UMTRA public affairs program and identify specific activities to be conducted during the year. It also describes the roles of various agencies involved in the conduct of the public affairs program and defines the functions of the Technical Assistance Contractor (TAC) Public Affairs Department. It integrates and replaces the Public Participation Plan (DOE/AL/62350-47D) and Public Information Plan (DOE/AL/623590-71). The plan describes the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) plans to keep stakeholders and other members of the public informed about project policies, plans, and activities, and provide opportunities for stakeholders and interested segments of the public to participate in project decision-making processes. The plan applies to the UMTRA Project Office; the DOE Albuquerque Operations Office, Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs (OIEA); the UMTRA TAC; the UMTRA Remedial Action Contractor (RAC); and other cooperating agencies.

  9. Engaging, Supporting, and Sustaining the Invisible Partners in Care: Young Caregivers of Veterans From the Post-9/11 Era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Katherine M; Kabat, Margaret; Henius, Jennifer; Harold, Courtney; Van Houtven, Harold

    2015-01-01

    Few studies have explored the health effects of caregiving for post-9/11 veterans who have been traumatically injured, have traumatic brain injuries, or have post-traumatic stress disorder. Post-9/11 veterans and their caregivers tend to be younger than veterans who served exclusively prior to 9/11. In response to the needs of caregivers, Public Law 111-163, the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010, was passed, providing unprecedented support for informal caregivers of veterans. This support includes a monthly stipend and health insurance for caregivers who meet eligibility criteria. The uptake in these support services, and the resulting cost of services, has far surpassed expectations. As the Department of Veterans Affairs continues to provide caregiver support services, it is essential to determine the value and direct impact of the services provided to caregivers and veterans.

  10. Veterans Medical Care: FY2010 Appropriations

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-21

    construction of state- owned nursing homes and domiciliary facilities and collaborates with the Department of Defense (DOD) in sharing health care ... domiciliary care , or travel for family members of veterans receiving mental health services from the VA except for such travel performed beyond a 100-mile...institutional respite care , geriatric evaluation, adult day healthcare - $15 per day; domiciliary care - $5 per day) Priority Group 1 (service

  11. Adherence and systemic reaction rates to allergy immunotherapy among veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellenburg, Joseph T; Lieberman, Jay A; Pattanaik, Debendra

    2016-01-01

    Although allergen immunotherapy (AIT) is effective and safe, nonadherence is common. Limited data exist regarding adherence to AIT, factors that affect adherence, and systemic reactions associated with AIT among veteran populations. To evaluate adherence to AIT and the prevalence of reactions secondary to AIT among patients at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Memphis, Tennessee. A retrospective chart review was performed of veterans who received AIT at a single Veterans Affairs facility. Age, race, sex, the total number of shots, travel distance, a diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and the number of severe adverse reactions were compared between the veterans who were adherent and veterans who were nonadherent. The overall adherence rate was 60.9%. Factors associated with adherence were a chart diagnosis of PTSD (29.3% [adherent group] versus 13.6% [nonadherent group]; p = 0.03) and home residence being a further distance from the facility (21.9 miles / 35.2 kilometers [adherent group] versus 18.0 miles / 28.9 kilometers [nonadherent group]; p = 0.03). Patients who were adherent received an average of more total injections compared with patients who were nonadherent. Age, sex, race, and history of systemic reactions during AIT displayed no statistically significant differences between the groups. There were a total of 20 systemic reactions, and the systemic reaction rate was 0.2% per AIT encounter and 0.1% per injection. AIT adherence and systemic reaction rates among veterans at our facility was comparable with similar studies. Adherence was associated with a chart diagnosis of PTSD and home residence that was further away from the clinic.

  12. Attitudes about the VA health-care setting, mental illness, and mental health treatment and their relationship with VA mental health service use among female and male OEF/OIF veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, Annie B; Meyer, Eric C; Vogt, Dawne

    2015-02-01

    In the present study, the authors explored gender differences in attitudinal barriers to and facilitators of care for Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF) veterans and examined the relationship of those factors with VA mental health service use among female and male veterans with probable mental health conditions. Data were collected as part of a national cross-sectional survey of OEF/OIF veterans; the current sample was limited to participants with a probable diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, or alcohol abuse (N = 278). Although negligible gender differences were observed in attitudes about VA care and perceived fit in the VA setting, men reported slightly more negative beliefs about mental illness and mental health treatment than women. In addition, logistic regressions revealed different associations with VA mental health service use for women and men. For women only, positive perceptions of VA care were associated with increased likelihood of seeking mental health treatment. For men only, perceived similarity to other VA care users and negative beliefs about mental health treatment were associated with increased likelihood of service use, whereas negative beliefs about mental illness were associated with lower likelihood of service use. For both women and men, perceived entitlement to VA care was associated with increased likelihood of service use and negative beliefs about treatment-seeking were associated with a reduced likelihood of seeking mental health care in the past 6 months. Results support the need for tailored outreach to address unique barriers to mental health treatment for female and male OEF/OIF veterans.

  13. National Coalition for Homeless Veterans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Continues Support of National Campaign to End Veteran Homelessness Nov. 14, 2017 This Veterans Day, Harbor Freight ... support of the national campaign to end veteran homelessness through generous contributions to the National Coalition for ...

  14. Health risk factors and differences in outcomes between younger and older veterans using VA transitional housing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Lisa M; Barnett, Scott D; Frahm, Kathryn A; Schinka, John A; Schonfeld, Lawrence; Casey, Roger J

    2015-01-01

    This study examined age-related differences in general medical and mental health risk factors for veterans participating in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Grant Per Diem (GPD) transitional supportive housing program. The subpopulation of older homeless veterans is growing, and little is known about the implications of this fact for health care providers and for supportive programs intended to meet homeless veterans' needs. Data were obtained from the VA records of all veterans (N=40,820) who used the GPD program during fiscal years 2003 to 2009. Unconditional adjusted and unadjusted odds ratios for general medical and psychiatric characteristics were calculated and were the primary study focus. Significant predictors of homeless program completion assessed from univariate models were then evaluated in multivariate models. Younger (homeless veterans reported an equal number of days homeless before enrollment. Younger veterans averaged 19 fewer days in GPD. Older veterans had more general medical problems and approximately $500 more in program costs. Findings from this study indicate that older homeless veterans are at increased risk of serious medical problems. This group is especially vulnerable to experiencing negative consequences related to homelessness. Addressing these complex needs will allow the VA to provide enhanced care to older homeless veterans.

  15. Veterans Administration Databases

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Veterans Administration Information Resource Center provides database and informatics experts, customer service, expert advice, information products, and web technology to VA researchers and others.

  16. Factors associated with receipt of pension and compensation benefits for homeless veterans in the VBA/VHA Homeless Outreach Initiative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Joyce H; Rosenheck, Robert A; Greenberg, Greg A; Seibyl, Catherine

    2007-03-01

    Public support payments may facilitate exit from homelessness for persons with mental illness. We examined data from 10,641 homeless veterans contacted from October 1, 1995 to September 30, 2002 in a collaborative outreach program designed to facilitate access to Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability benefits. Those who were awarded benefits (22% of contacted veterans) were more likely to report disability, poor to fair self-rated health, and were more likely to have used VA services in the past. Thus, this program achieved only modest success and was most successful with veterans who were already receiving VA services and who might have received benefits even without the outreach effort.

  17. Addressing the Challenges of Palliative Care for Homeless Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutt, Evelyn; Albright, Karen; Dischinger, Hannah; Weber, Mary; Jones, Jacqueline; O'Toole, Thomas P

    2017-01-01

    Veterans who nearing the end of life (EOL) in unstable housing are not adequately served by current palliative care or homeless programs. Multidisciplinary focus groups, interviews with community and Veterans Affairs (VA) leaders and with 29 homeless veterans were conducted in five cities. A forum of national palliative and homelessness care leaders (n=5) and representatives from each focus group (n=10), then convened. The forum used Nominal Group Process to suggest improvements in EOL care for veterans without homes. Modified Delphi Process was used to consolidate and prioritize recommendations during two subsequent tele-video conferences. Qualitative content analysis drew on meeting transcripts and field notes. The Forum developed 12 recommendations to address the following barriers: (1) Declining health often makes independent living or plans to abstain impossible, but housing programs usually require functional independence and sobriety. (2) Managing symptoms within the homelessness context is challenging. (3) Discontinuities within and between systems restrict care. (4) VA regulations challenge collaboration with community providers. (5) Veterans with unstable housing who are at EOL and those who care for them must compete nationally for prioritization of their care. Care of veterans at EOL without homes may be substantially improved through policy changes to facilitate access to appropriate housing and care; better dissemination of existing policy; cross-discipline and cross-system education; facilitated communication among VA, community, homeless and EOL providers; and pilot testing of VA group homes or palliative care facilities that employ harm reduction strategies.

  18. Health Care for Homeless Veterans program. Final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-01

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) amends its medical regulations concerning eligibility for the Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) program. The HCHV program provides per diem payments to non-VA community-based facilities that provide housing, outreach services, case management services, and rehabilitative services, and may provide care and/or treatment to homeless veterans who are enrolled in or eligible for VA health care. The rule modifies VA's HCHV regulations to conform to changes enacted in the Honoring America's Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012. Specifically, the rule removes the requirement that homeless veterans be diagnosed with a serious mental illness or substance use disorder to qualify for the HCHV program. This change makes the program available to all homeless veterans who are enrolled in or eligible for VA health care. The rule also updates the definition of homeless to match in part the one used by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The rule further clarifies that the services provided by the HCHV program through non-VA community-based providers must include case management services, including non-clinical case management, as appropriate.

  19. Evaluation of US Veterans Nutrition Education for Diabetes Prevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Megan; Braun, Katie; List, Riesa; Utech, Anne; Moore, Carolyn; White, Donna L; Garcia, Jose M

    2016-09-01

    Evaluate the effectiveness of nutrition education interventions for diabetes prevention. Retrospective cohort design. Tertiary-care US Veterans' Hospital, July 2007 to July 2012, using pre-existing database. Prediabetic, adult veterans (n = 372), mostly men (94.4%, n = 351). Visits with existing nutrition education classes were collected. diabetes status; predictors: visits/encounters, age, body mass index, weight change, and hemoglobin A1c. Cox proportional hazards method, χ(2) test, and logistic regression. In this sample, prediabetic veterans who received nutrition education were less likely to develop diabetes when compared with prediabetic veterans who did not receive nutrition education (hazard ratio, 0.71; 95% confidence interval, 0.55-0.92; P Nutrition education was significantly associated with preventing the progression from prediabetes to diabetes in US Veterans participating in a nutrition education intervention at the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Copyright © 2016 Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior. All rights reserved.

  20. Arthritis and Veterans

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2015-11-09

    One in three veterans has arthritis. This podcast provides information on how veterans can improve their quality of life with physical activity and other arthritis management strategies.  Created: 11/9/2015 by National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP).   Date Released: 11/9/2015.

  1. Male Veteran Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) Program Outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaffer, Bradley J

    2016-01-01

    The prominence and incidence of intimate partner violence (IPV) with male military veterans vary, but generally there is consensus that screening and intervention does help reduce IPV. Intervention is generally provided in the community via Batterer Intervention Programs. However, at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) intervention is provided via the Domestic Relations Clinic. Nationally the VA has limited treatment for male IPV. An aggregate sample (n = 178) of participants was assessed using the Domestic Violence/Abuse Screen to measure covariate pre-test and post-test outcomes, program failure, and recidivism. The treatment approach is psycho-educationally based to meet the challenging and unique needs of the military veteran population. The results contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of IPV and highlight the need for more intervention and prevention approaches.

  2. Veterans Employment Pay for Success Grant Program. Interim final rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-08-10

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is establishing a grant program (Veterans Employment Pay for Success (VEPFS)) under the authority of the U.S.C. to award grants to eligible entities to fund projects that are successful in accomplishing employment rehabilitation for Veterans with service-connected disabilities. VA will award grants on the basis of an eligible entity's proposed use of a Pay for Success (PFS) strategy to achieve goals. This interim final rule establishes regulations for awarding a VEPFS grant, including the general process for awarding the grant, criteria and parameters for evaluating grant applications, priorities related to the award of a grant, and general requirements and guidance for administering a VEPFS grant program.

  3. The use of VA Disability Compensation and Social Security Disability Insurance among working-aged veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilmoth, Janet M; London, Andrew S; Heflin, Colleen M

    2015-07-01

    Although there is substantial disability among veterans, relatively little is known about working-aged veterans' uptake of Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Disability Compensation and Social Security Disability Insurance (DI). This study identifies levels of veteran participation in VA disability and/or DI benefit programs, examines transitions into and out of VA and DI programs among veterans, and estimates the size and composition of the veteran population receiving VA and/or DI benefits over time. Data from the 1992, 1993, 1996, 2001, 2004, and 2008 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) are used to describe VA and DI program participation among veterans under the age of 65. The majority of working-aged veterans do not receive VA or DI benefits and joint participation is low, but use of these programs has increased over time. A higher percentage of veterans receive VA compensation, which ranges from 4.9% in 1992 to 13.2% in 2008, than DI compensation, which ranges from 2.9% in 1992 to 6.7% in 2008. The rate of joint participation ranges from less than 1% in 1992 to 3.6% in 2008. Veterans experience few transitions between VA and DI programs during the 36-48 months they are observed. The number of veterans receiving benefits from VA and/or DI nearly doubled between 1992 and 2008. There have been substantial shifts in the composition of veterans using these programs, as cohorts who served prior to 1964 are replaced by those who served after 1964. The findings suggest potential gaps in veterans' access to disability programs that might be addressed through improved coordination of VA and DI benefits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Challenges of Providing End-of-Life Care for Homeless Veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutt, Evelyn; Whitfield, Emily; Min, Sung-Joon; Jones, Jacqueline; Weber, Mary; Albright, Karen; Levy, Cari; O'Toole, Thomas

    2016-05-01

    To describe challenges of caring for homeless veterans at end of life (EOL) as perceived by Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) homeless and EOL care staff. E-mail survey. Homelessness and EOL programs at VAMCs. Programs and their ratings of personal, structural, and clinical care challenges were described statistically. Homelessness and EOL program responses were compared in unadjusted analyses and using multivariable models. Of 152 VAMCs, 50 (33%) completed the survey. The VAMCs treated an average of 6.5 homeless veterans at EOL annually. Lack of appropriate housing was the most critical challenge. The EOL programs expressed somewhat more concern about lack of appropriate care site and care coordination than did homelessness programs. Personal, clinical, and structural challenges face care providers for veterans who are homeless at EOL. Deeper understanding of these challenges will require qualitative study of homeless veterans and care providers. © The Author(s) 2015.

  5. Street outreach and other forms of engagement with literally homeless veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Kasprow, Wesley J; Kane, Vincent; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2014-05-01

    Street outreach is one of the most direct methods of engaging homeless individuals, but the characteristics of those most likely to be engaged this way is not well-understood. Data from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Homeless Operations Management and Evaluation System showed that of the 70,778 literally homeless veterans engaged in VA homeless services in 2011-2012, 12% were through street outreach while the majority was through provider referrals (41%) and self-referrals (28%). Veterans engaged through street outreach had more extensive histories of recent homelessness, were more likely to be chronically homeless, and were more likely to be referred and admitted to the VA's supported housing program than other veterans. These findings suggest street outreach is an especially important approach to engaging chronic street homeless veterans in services and linking them to permanent supported housing.

  6. VA Disability Compensation and Money Spent on Substance Use Among Homeless Veterans: A Controversial Association.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2015-06-01

    There has long been concern that public support payments are used to support addictive behaviors. This study examined the amount of money homeless veterans spend on alcohol and drugs and the association between public support income, including VA disability compensation, and expenditures on alcohol and drugs. Data were from 1,160 veterans from 19 sites on entry into the Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program. Descriptive statistics and nonparametric analyses were conducted. About 33% of veterans reported spending money on alcohol and 22% reported spending money on drugs in the past month. No significant association was found between public support income, VA disability compensation, and money spent on alcohol and drugs. A substantial proportion of homeless veterans spend some income on alcohol and drugs, but disability income, including VA compensation, does not seem to be related to substance use or money spent on addictive substances.

  7. Ethique des affaires

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    L’affaire Enron aura redynamisé outre-Rhin la réflexion sur l’éthique des affaires. Mais la globalisation aussi apporte son lot de questions : un patron a-t-il moralement le droit de fermer un site qui n’est plus rentable ? Les impératifs de compétitivité exigent-ils de lui qu’il le fasse ? Comment juger des performances d’un collaborateur ? C’est à toute une série de questions de ce type que tente de répondre un président de directoire allemand, ancien consultant au cabinet Boston Consulting...

  8. Celebrities in International Affairs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Richey, Lisa Ann; Budabin, Alexandra Cosima

    2016-01-01

    Celebrity engagement in global “helping” is not a simple matter of highly photogenic caring for needy others across borders; it is a complex relationship of power that often produces contradictory functions in relation to the goals of humanitarianism, development, and advocacy. This article argues...... that celebrities are acting as other elite actors in international affairs: investing considerable capital into processes that are highly political. It traces the emergence and practices of the elite politics of celebrities in North-South relations, an evolution made possible by recent changes in aid practices......, media, and NGOs, then considers exemplary cases of Angelina Jolie in Burma, Ben Affleck in the Democractic Republic of Congo, and Madonna in Malawi. These celebrity practices as diplomats, experts, and humanitarians in international affairs illustrate the diverse and contradictory forms of engagement...

  9. Mental health utilization among older Veterans with coexisting depression and dementia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth A DiNapoli

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: We compared mental health service utilization among older, depressed Veterans (60 years or older with and without coexisting dementia. Methods: This retrospective study examined data from the 2010 Veterans Health Administration National Patient Care Database outpatient treatment files of Veterans with a newly recognized diagnosis of depression (N = 177,710. Results: Approximately 48.84% with coexisting depression and dementia and 32.00% with depression only received mental health services within 12 months of diagnosis (p < .0001. Veterans with coexisting depression and dementia were more likely to receive medication-management appointments (33.40% vs 20.62%, individual therapy (13.39% vs 10.91%, and family therapy (3.77% vs 1.19% than depressed Veterans without dementia. Conclusion: In general, Veterans with recently diagnosed depression are significantly underusing Veterans Affairs mental health treatment services. Those Veterans who have comorbid dementia are more likely than those with just depression to be enrolled in mental health treatments. Systemic improvements are needed to increase use of mental health services for older, depressed Veterans.

  10. Student Veteran perceptions of facilitators and barriers to achieving academic goals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norman, Sonya B; Rosen, Jay; Himmerich, Sara; Myers, Ursula S; Davis, Brittany; Browne, Kendall C; Piland, Neill

    2015-01-01

    According to recent estimates, over 1 million Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom (OIF/OEF) Veterans are utilizing the post-9/11 GI Bill to pursue higher education. Data collected by the Department of Defense suggests that greater than 17% of returning Veterans may suffer from mental and physical health disorders, which can negatively affect school performance. The current study explored student Veterans' perceived facilitators and barriers to achieving academic goals. Thirty-one student Veterans completed self-report measures and interviews. Results suggested that Veterans that were reporting problems or symptoms in one mental or physical health domain were likely to be reporting symptoms or problems in others as well. The interview data were coded, and three overarching themes related to barriers and facilitators emerged: person features (e.g., discipline and determination, symptoms and stressors), institutional structure (i.e., what schools and the Department of Veterans Affairs do that was perceived to help or hinder student Veteran success), and policy concerns (i.e., how the structure of the GI Bill affects student Veteran school experience). Results from this research indicate the need for larger studies and program development efforts aimed at enhancing academic outcomes for Veterans.

  11. Developing a Leadership Development Program for the Veterans Benefits Administration within the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-06-13

    8 VBA Budget ................................................................................................................ 8... VBA Leadership and Personnel .................................................................................. 9 Employee Promotion within VBA ...14 VBA Goals and Key Programs

  12. Long-term effects of military service on mental health among veterans of the Vietnam War era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Matthew S; Laditka, Sarah B; Laditka, James N

    2008-06-01

    Comparing outcomes of veterans who served in Vietnam and those who served elsewhere, we examined treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder, treatment of other mental health conditions, psychiatric treatment location, and six mental health well-being measures. The analytic sample consisted of nationally representative data from the 2001 National Survey of Veterans. Analyses included multivariate logistic regression that controlled for sociodemographic characteristics. Of Vietnam War-era veterans in the National Survey of Veterans (N = 7,914), 3,937 served in Vietnam and 3,977 served elsewhere. These veterans were stratified into or = 60 years of age (N = 1,766). Veterans who served in Vietnam had notably poorer mental health than did those who served elsewhere. There were striking mental health differences between younger and older veterans; younger veterans had substantially worse measures of mental health. These results suggest greater resource needs among younger Vietnam War veterans. Clinicians and the Department of Veterans Affairs should focus on mental health services for younger veterans.

  13. Screening for homelessness among individuals initiating medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder in the Veterans Health Administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachhuber, Marcus A; Roberts, Christopher B; Metraux, Stephen; Montgomery, Ann Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    To determine the prevalence of homelessness and risk for homelessness among veterans with opioid use disorder initiating treatment. Addiction treatment programs operated by the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). All veterans initiating treatment with methadone or buprenorphine for opioid use disorder between October 1, 2013 and September 30, 2014 (n = 2,699) who were administered the VA's national homelessness screener. Self-reported homelessness or imminent risk of homelessness. The prevalence of homelessness was 10.2 percent and 5.3 percent were at risk for homelessness. Compared to male veterans, women veterans were less likely to report homelessness (8.9 percent vs 10.3 percent) but more likely to be at risk (11.8 percent vs 4.9 percent). By age group, veterans aged 18-34 and 45-54 years most frequently reported homelessness (12.0 and 11.7 percent, respectively) and veterans aged 45-54 and 55-64 years most frequently reported risk for homelessness (6.5 and 6.8 percent, respectively). The prevalence of homelessness in this population is approximately 10 times that of the general veteran population accessing care at VA. Screening identified a substantial number of veterans who could benefit from VA housing assistance and had not received it recently. Programs to address veteran homelessness should engage with veterans seeking addiction treatment. Integration of homelessness services into addiction treatment settings may, in turn, improve outcomes.

  14. Clinician versus Veteran ratings on the Mayo-Portland Participation Index in veterans with a history of mild traumatic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCulloch, Katie; Pastorek, Nicholas J; Miller, Brian I; Romesser, Jennifer; Linck, John; Sim, Anita H; Troyanskaya, Maya; Maestas, Kacey Little

    2015-01-01

    The Department of Veterans Affairs is encouraging administration of the Mayo-Portland Adaptability Inventory-4 Participation Index (M2PI) to identify long-term psychosocial outcomes of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF), Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), and Operation New Dawn (OND) Veterans with a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI). To evaluate clinician and Veteran interrater reliability and how response validity influences M2PI item ratings. A total of 122 OEF/OIF/OND Veterans who reported a history consistent with mild TBI during deployment and were referred for neuropsychological evaluation following Comprehensive TBI Evaluation. Interrater reliability study. M2PI; Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 Symptom Validity Scale (FBS). Veterans reported greater perceived restrictions than clinicians across all M2PI items and total score. Interrater correlations ranged from rs = 0.27 (residence) to rs = 0.58 (money management) across items, with a total score correlation of rs = 0.60. When response bias was indicated, both Veterans and clinicians reported greater participation restrictions than those reported by Veterans without evidenced response bias. Low interrater correlation is consistent with previous findings. As ratings of clinicians and Veterans should not be interpreted as equivalent, documenting the rater's identity is important for interpretation. Using objective indicators of functional outcome may assist clinician raters, particularly when self-report may be biased.

  15. Who is served by programs for the homeless? Admission to a domiciliary care program for homeless veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenheck, R; Leda, C

    1991-02-01

    Demographic and clinical data are presented on 4,138 veterans assessed in the 20-site Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans program during its first year of operation. More than two-thirds of the veterans who were screened had been hospitalized in VA medical centers during the year before assessment, and 34 percent were hospitalized at the time of assessment. Compared with veterans who were not admitted for residential treatment, veterans who were admitted were more likely to be previously involved in mental health treatment, literally homeless rather than at risk for homelessness, and without public financial support. Specialized service programs for the homeless such as the VA domiciliary care program may also be called on to play a broader role in the discharge and rehabilitative efforts of public mental health service systems.

  16. SU-F-T-246: Evaluation of Healthcare Failure Mode And Effect Analysis For Risk Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harry, T [Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR (United States); University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA (United States); Manger, R; Cervino, L; Pawlicki, T [University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA (United States)

    2016-06-15

    Purpose: To evaluate the differences between the Veteran Affairs Healthcare Failure Modes and Effect Analysis (HFMEA) and the AAPM Task Group 100 Failure and Effect Analysis (FMEA) risk assessment techniques in the setting of a stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) procedure were compared respectively. Understanding the differences in the techniques methodologies and outcomes will provide further insight into the applicability and utility of risk assessments exercises in radiation therapy. Methods: HFMEA risk assessment analysis was performed on a stereotactic radiosurgery procedure. A previous study from our institution completed a FMEA of our SRS procedure and the process map generated from this work was used for the HFMEA. The process of performing the HFMEA scoring was analyzed, and the results from both analyses were compared. Results: The key differences between the two risk assessments are the scoring criteria for failure modes and identifying critical failure modes for potential hazards. The general consensus among the team performing the analyses was that scoring for the HFMEA was simpler and more intuitive then the FMEA. The FMEA identified 25 critical failure modes while the HFMEA identified 39. Seven of the FMEA critical failure modes were not identified by the HFMEA and 21 of the HFMEA critical failure modes were not identified by the FMEA. HFMEA as described by the Veteran Affairs provides guidelines on which failure modes to address first. Conclusion: HFMEA is a more efficient model for identifying gross risks in a process than FMEA. Clinics with minimal staff, time and resources can benefit from this type of risk assessment to eliminate or mitigate high risk hazards with nominal effort. FMEA can provide more in depth details but at the cost of elevated effort.

  17. Characteristics and Use of Services Among Literally Homeless and Unstably Housed U.S. Veterans With Custody of Minor Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Rosenheck, Robert A; Kasprow, Wesley J; Kane, Vincent

    2015-10-01

    The study examined the number of homeless veterans with minor children in their custody ("children in custody"), compared sociodemographic and clinical characteristics among homeless veterans with and without children in custody, and observed differences in referral and admission patterns among veterans with and without children in custody for a variety of U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) programs for homeless veterans. Data were obtained from the VA Homeless Operations Management and Evaluation System for 89,142 literally homeless and unstably housed veterans. Sociodemographic, housing, health, and psychosocial characteristics of veterans were analyzed. Among literally homeless veterans, 9% of men and 30% of women had children in custody; among unstably housed veterans, 18% of men and 45% of women had children in custody. Both male and female veterans with children in custody were younger and less likely to have chronic general medical conditions and psychiatric disorders compared with other veterans, but, notably, 11% of homeless veterans with children in custody had psychotic disorders. Veterans with children in custody were more likely than other veterans to be referred and admitted to the VA's permanent supported housing program, and women were more likely than men to be admitted to the program. A substantial proportion of homeless veterans served by the VA have severe mental illness and children in custody, which raises concerns about the parenting environment for their children. Particular focus should be directed at VA's supported-housing program, and the practical and ethical implications of serving homeless parents and their children need to be considered.

  18. 77 FR 20890 - Proposed Information Collection (Appointment of Veterans Service Organization/or Individuals as...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-06

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Appointment of Veterans Service Organization/or Individuals as... of certain information by the agency. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, Federal... information, including each proposed extension of currently approved collection, and allow 60 days for public...

  19. 78 FR 46424 - Proposed Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-Veterans and Survivors) Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-31

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-- Veterans and Survivors) Activity... techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title: Residency Verification Report... opportunity for public comment on the proposed collection of certain information by the agency. Under the...

  20. 75 FR 62186 - Proposed Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-Veterans and Survivors) Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-07

    ... AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-- Veterans and Survivors) Activity... techniques or the use of other forms of information technology. Title: Residency Verification Report... opportunity for public comment on the proposed collection of certain information by the agency. Under the...

  1. 78 FR 76411 - Agency Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-Veterans and Survivors) Activity...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-17

    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Residency Verification Report-- Veterans and Survivors) Activity... . Please refer to ``OMB Control No. 2900-0655.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Residency Verification... submit the collection of information abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for...

  2. 38 CFR 21.6050 - Participation of eligible veterans in an evaluation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... VETERANS AFFAIRS (CONTINUED) VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION AND EDUCATION Temporary Program of Vocational... (VR&E) staff as provided in §§ 21.197(c)(4) and 21.198(d). (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1524(a); Pub. L. 100...

  3. Trauma Spectrum Disorders: Emerging Perspectives on the Impact on Military and Veteran Families

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, Lolita; Begg, Lisa; Lipson, Linda; Elvander, Erika

    2011-01-01

    This article summarizes the findings from the Second Annual Trauma Spectrum Disorders Conference, which was held in December 2009 and was sponsored by the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury in conjunction with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the National Institutes of Health. The conference…

  4. Do medical house officers value the health of veterans differently from the health of non-veterans?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luckhaupt Sara

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Little information is available regarding medical residents' perceptions of patients' health-related quality of life. Patients cared for by residents have been shown to receive differing patterns of care at Veterans Affairs facilities than at community or university settings. We therefore examined: 1 how resident physicians value the health of patients; 2 whether values differ if the patient is described as a veteran; and 3 whether residency-associated variables impact values. Methods All medicine residents in a teaching hospital were asked to watch a digital video of an actor depicting a 72-year-old patient with mild-moderate congestive heart failure. Residents were randomized to 2 groups: in one group, the patient was described as a veteran of the Korean War, and in the other, he was referred to only as a male. The respondents assessed the patient's health state using 4 measures: rating scale (RS, time tradeoff (TTO, standard gamble (SG, and willingness to pay (WTP. We also ascertained residents' demographics, risk attitudes, residency program type, post-graduate year level, current rotation, experience in a Veterans Affairs hospital, and how many days it had been since they were last on call. We performed univariate and multivariable analyses using the RS, TTO, SG and WTP as dependent variables. Results Eighty-one residents (89.0% of eligible participated, with 36 (44.4% viewing the video of the veteran and 45 (55.6% viewing the video of the non-veteran. Their mean (SD age was 28.7 (3.1 years; 51.3% were female; and 67.5% were white. There were no differences in residents' characteristics or in RS, TTO, SG and WTP scores between the veteran and non-veteran groups. The mean RS score was 0.60 (0.14; the mean TTO score was 0.80 (0.20; the mean SG score was 0.91 (0.10; and the median (25th, 75th percentile WTP was $10,000 ($7600, $20,000 per year. In multivariable analyses, being a resident in the categorical program was

  5. Revolution in Detection Affairs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stern W.

    2013-11-02

    The detection of nuclear or radioactive materials for homeland or national security purposes is inherently difficult. This is one reason detection efforts must be seen as just one part of an overall nuclear defense strategy which includes, inter alia, material security, detection, interdiction, consequence management and recovery. Nevertheless, one could argue that there has been a revolution in detection affairs in the past several decades as the innovative application of new technology has changed the character and conduct of detection operations. This revolution will likely be most effectively reinforced in the coming decades with the networking of detectors and innovative application of anomaly detection algorithms.

  6. Agent Orange exposure and attributed health effects in Vietnam veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Alvin L; Cecil, Paul F

    2011-07-01

    Serum dioxin studies of Vietnam (VN) veterans, military historical records of tactical herbicide use in Vietnam, and the compelling evidence of the photodegradation of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) and other aspects of environmental fate and low bioavailability of TCDD are consistent with few, if any, ground troop veterans being exposed to Agent Orange. That conclusion, however, is contrary to the presumption by the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) that military service in Vietnam anytime from January 9, 1962 to May 7, 1975 is a proxy for exposure to Agent Orange. The DVA assumption is inconsistent with the scientific principles governing determinations of disease causation. The DVA has nonetheless awarded Agent Orange-related benefits and compensation to an increasing number of VN veterans based on the presumption of exposure and the published findings of the Institute of Medicine that there is sufficient evidence of a "statistical association" (a less stringent standard than "causal relationship") between exposure to tactical herbicides or TCDD and 15 different human diseases. A fairer and more valid approach for VN veterans would have been to enact a program of "Vietnam experience" benefits for those seriously ill, rather than benefits based on the dubious premise of injuries caused by Agent Orange.

  7. Experiences with VHA care: a qualitative study of U.S. women veterans with self-reported trauma histories

    OpenAIRE

    Kehle-Forbes, Shannon M.; Harwood, Eileen M.; Spoont, Michele R.; Sayer, Nina A.; Gerould, Heather; Murdoch, Maureen

    2017-01-01

    Background Women veterans in the United States, particularly those with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or a history of military sexual assault, have unique health care needs, but their minority status in the US Veterans Health Administration (VHA) has led to documented healthcare disparities when compared to men. This study?s objective was to obtain a richer understanding of the challenges and successes encountered by women veterans with self-reported service-related trauma histories (p...

  8. Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes: Impact on Weight, Quality of Life, and Psychiatric Symptoms in Veterans With Mental Illness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tessier, Jillian M; Erickson, Zachary D; Meyer, Hilary B; Baker, Matthew R; Gelberg, Hollie A; Arnold, Irina Y; Kwan, Crystal; Chamberlin, Valery; Rosen, Jennifer A; Shah, Chandresh; Hellemann, Gerhard; Lewis, Melissa M; Nguyen, Charles; Sachinvala, Neena; Amrami, Binyamin; Pierre, Joseph M; Ames, Donna

    2017-09-01

    Veterans with mental illness tend to have shorter life spans and suboptimal physical health because of a variety of factors. These factors include poor nutrition, being overweight, and smoking cigarettes. Nonphysical contributors that may affect quality of life are the stigma associated with mental illness, social difficulties, and spiritual crises. Current mental health treatment focuses primarily on the delivery of medication and evidence-based psychotherapies, which may not affect all the above areas of a Veteran's life as they focus primarily on improving psychological symptoms. Clinicians may find greater success using integrative, comprehensive, multifaceted programs to treat these problems spanning the biological, psychological, social, and spiritual domains. These pilot studies test an adjunctive, holistic, behavioral approach to treat mental illness. This pilot work explores the hypotheses that engagement in a greater number of therapeutic lifestyle changes (TLCs) leads to improvement in quality of life, reduction of psychiatric symptoms, and weight loss. Institutional Review Boards for human subjects at the Veterans Affairs (VA) Greater Los Angeles and Long Beach Healthcare Systems approved pilot study activities at their sites. Pilot Study 1 was a prospective survey study of Veterans with mental illness, who gained weight on an atypical antipsychotic medication regimen, participating in a weight management study. At each session of the 1-year study, researchers asked a convenience sample of 55 Veterans in the treatment arm whether they engaged in each of the eight TLCs: exercise, nutrition/diet, stress management and relaxation, time in nature, relationships, service to others, religious or spiritual involvement, and recreation. Pilot Study 2 applied the TLC behavioral intervention and examined 19 Veterans with mental illness, who attended four classes about TLCs, received individual counseling over 9 weeks, and maintained journals to track TLC practice

  9. Race and incarceration in an aging cohort of Vietnam veterans in treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coker, Kendell L; Rosenheck, Robert

    2014-03-01

    Cross sectional studies have addressed the incarceration of Vietnam veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but no studies have examined changes in incarceration as they age. This study examines patterns of incarceration among Vietnam veterans treated in specialized veterans affairs (VA) intensive PTSD programs over time. Data was drawn from admission data from the initial episode of treatment of Caucasian and African American Vietnam veterans entering VA specialized intensive PTSD programs between 1993 and 2011 (N = 31,707). Bivariate correlations and logistic regression were used to examine associations among race and incarceration over time and the potentially confounding influence of demographic and clinical covariates on this relationship. Rates of reported incarceration declined from 63 to 43%. Over time, African American veterans were 34% more likely than Caucasian veterans to have a lifetime history of incarceration while interaction analysis showed steeper declines for Caucasians than African Americans. Rates of incarceration among these Vietnam veterans declined as they aged. Furthermore, African American veterans were substantially more likely than Caucasian veterans to have been incarcerated and showed less decline as the cohort aged. While reduced, needs for clinical PTSD services remain among aging combat veterans.

  10. Measuring sustainability within the Veterans Administration Mental Health System Redesign initiative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, James H; Krahn, Dean; Wise, Meg; Oliver, Karen Anderson

    2011-01-01

    To examine how attributes affecting sustainability differ across Veterans Health Administration organizational components and by staff characteristics. Surveys of 870 change team members and 50 staff interviews within the Veterans Affairs' Mental Health System Redesign initiative. A 1-way ANOVA with a Tukey post hoc test examined differences in sustainability by Veteran Integrated Service Networks, job classification, and tenure from staff survey data of the Sustainability Index. Qualitative interviews used an iterative process to identify "a priori" and "in vivo" themes. A simple stepwise linear regression explored predictors of sustainability. Sustainability differed across Veteran Integrated Service Networks and staff tenure. Job classification differences existed for the following: (1) benefits and credibility of the change and (2) staff involvement and attitudes toward change. Sustainability barriers were staff and institutional resistance and nonsupportive leadership. Facilitators were commitment to veterans, strong leadership, and use of quality improvement tools. Sustainability predictors were outcomes tracking, regular reporting, and use of Plan, Do, Study, Adjust cycles. Creating homogeneous implementation and sustainability processes across a national health system is difficult. Despite the Veterans Affairs' best evidence-based implementation efforts, there was significant variance. Locally tailored interventions might better support sustainability than "one-size-fits-all" approaches. Further research is needed to understand how participation in a quality improvement collaborative affects sustainability.

  11. Homelessness among a nationally representative sample of US veterans: prevalence, service utilization, and correlates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Link, Bruce; Rosenheck, Robert A; Pietrzak, Robert H

    2016-06-01

    To examine the prevalence of lifetime homelessness among veterans and use of Veterans Affairs (VA) homeless services, as well as their association with sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. A nationally representative sample of 1533 US veterans was surveyed July-August 2015. Among all veterans, 8.5 % reported any lifetime homelessness in their adult life, but only 17.2 % of those reported using VA homeless services. Prevalence of homelessness and VA homeless service use did not significantly differ by gender. Being low income, aged 35-44, and having poor mental and physical health were each independently associated with lifetime homelessness. Veterans who were White or lived in rural areas were significantly less likely to have used VA homeless services. Homelessness remains a substantial problem across different generations of veterans. The low reported uptake of VA homeless services suggests there are barriers to care in this population, especially for veterans who live in rural areas. Governmental resources dedicated to veteran homelessness should be supported, and obtaining accurate prevalence estimates are important to tracking progress over time.

  12. Evaluation of Cholesterol as a Biomarker for Suicidality in a Veteran Sample.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reuter, Chuck; Caldwell, Barbara; Basehore, Heather

    2017-08-01

    A reduction in total cholesterol may alter the microviscosity of the brain-cell-membrane, reducing serotonin receptor exposure. The resulting imbalance between serotonin and dopamine may lead to an increased risk for suicidality. The objective of this research was to evaluate total cholesterol as a biological marker for suicidality in a sample of US military veterans. The study population consisted of veterans who received care at the Coatesville Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) and were included in the Suicide Prevention Coordinator's database for having suicidal ideation with evidence of escalating intent, a documented suicide attempt, or committed suicide between 2009 and 2015. The veterans' medical data were obtained from the facility's computerized patient record system. The final sample was 188 observations from 128 unique veterans. Veterans with total cholesterol levels below 168 mg/dl appeared to have a higher suicide risk than those with higher levels. The cholesterol levels of veterans reporting suicidal ideation or attempt were significantly lower than the group reporting neither [F(2, 185) = 30.19, p cholesterol levels from an earlier visit in which they did not report suicidality. A latent class analysis revealed that among other differences, suicidal veterans were younger, leaner, and had more anxiety, sleep problems, and higher education than those being seen for an issue unrelated to suicidality. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Eating disorders and psychiatric comorbidity among Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maguen, Shira; Cohen, Beth; Cohen, Greg; Madden, Erin; Bertenthal, Daniel; Seal, Karen

    2012-01-01

    Individuals with mental health problems are at elevated risk for eating disorders. Veterans serving in support of the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq (OEF/OIF) have a high prevalence of deployment-related mental health problems, but little is known about their risk for eating disorders. Our aim was to determine rates of eating disorder diagnoses among OEF/OIF veterans with mental health problems, particularly among those with comorbid mental health problems. This retrospective, cross-sectional analysis of nationwide VA healthcare facilities used descriptive statistics and regression analyses to determine eating disorder rates in OEF/OIF veterans who were new users of VA healthcare from October 7, 2001 to December 31, 2010 (N = 593,739). Although the prevalence of eating disorder diagnoses was 0.007% (n = 465) in women and eating disorder than those without mental health diagnoses. Eating disorders were significantly more common in women with depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, and alcohol and/or drug use disorders than in women veterans without these mental health disorders. Among men, the associations between eating disorder diagnoses and comorbid mental health diagnoses closely paralleled those observed in women. Rates of eating disorders are significantly higher among returning veterans with comorbid mental health problems compared with those without mental health diagnoses. Further research should examine methods to improve detection and treatment of eating disorders in this population. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Deserving Veterans' Disability Compensation: A Qualitative Study of Veterans' Perceptions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacGregor, Casey; Heilemann, MarySue V

    2017-05-01

    Veterans recently returned from Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) experience many health and mental health problems after deployment. These OEF/OIF veterans are applying and appealing for veterans' disability compensation (VDC) at rapidly increasing rates, often for "invisible conditions" such as posttraumatic stress disorder. Little is known about how veterans experience the process of applying and receiving VDC. In-depth qualitative interviews were conducted with OEF/OIF veterans ages 35 and younger (N = 18). This article addresses how veterans perceive themselves, and other veterans, of being deserving and undeserving of VDC. Veterans' rationales can be categorized into four primary areas: (1) risking and suffering, (2) the cause of the condition, (3) intentions to become self-sufficient, and (4) putting VDC to "good use." © 2017 National Association of Social Workers.

  15. African Journal of International Affairs

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The African Journal of International Affairs (AJIA) is a bi-annual publication of CODESRIA, Dakar, Senegal. It offers a platform for analyses on contemporary issues in African International Affairs in relation to global developments as they affect Africa. AJIA welcomes contributions in English and in French from both African ...

  16. Canadian Students and World Affairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Close, David

    1984-01-01

    Describes the results of survey of 1,100 grade 5, 8, and 11 students to determine their knowledge of and attitudes toward world affairs. Notes that age, sex, and class were the most important correlates and that children were only marginally more knowledgeable about domestic politics than international affairs. (SB)

  17. Nicotine dependence and its risk factors among users of veterans health services, 2008-2009.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Jack; Edens, Ellen L; Rosenheck, Robert A

    2011-11-01

    Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and is disproportionately higher among veterans than nonveterans. We examined the prevalence of nicotine dependence and its associated risk factors among veterans who used health services in the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) system. Using a case-control design, we compared all VA health service users in fiscal year 2008-2009 (N = 5,031,381) who received a nicotine dependence diagnosis with those who did not. Independent risk and protective factors associated with receiving a nicotine dependence diagnosis were identified using logistic regression analysis. We conducted subgroup analyses on 2 groups of particular policy concern: homeless veterans and veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Among all recent VA health service users, 15% (n = 749,353) received a diagnosis of nicotine dependence. Substance abuse, other mental health diagnoses, and homelessness were identified as major risk factors. Veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan were not found to be at increased risk compared to veterans from other war eras. Major risk and protective factors within the subgroups of homeless veterans and veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan were broadly similar to those in the general VA population. Given that other studies have found higher rates of nicotine dependence among veterans, this risk behavior may be underdiagnosed in VA medical records. Veterans who are homeless or have mental health or substance abuse problems are at highest risk and should be targeted for smoking prevention and cessation interventions. These results support, in principle, efforts to integrate smoking cessation programs with mental health and homeless services.

  18. Rural women veterans demographic report: defining VA users' health and health care access in rural areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Elizabeth; Dailey, Nancy; Bair, Byron; Shore, Jay

    2014-01-01

    While many women choose to live in rural areas after retiring from active military duty, a paucity of studies examine rural women veterans' health care needs. This report is the first of its kind to describe the population demographics and health care utilization of rural female veteran patients enrolled in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Using the National Patient Care Datasets (n = 327,785), we ran adjusted regression analyses to examine service utilization between (1) urban and rural and (2) urban and highly rural women veterans. Rural and highly rural women veterans were older and more likely to be married than their urban counterparts. Diagnostic rates were generally similar between groups for several mental health disorders, hypertension, and diabetes, with the exception of nonposttraumatic stress anxiety that was significantly lower for highly rural women veterans. Rural and highly rural women veterans were less likely to present to the VA for women's specific care than urban women veterans; highly rural women veterans were less likely to present for mental health care compared to urban women veterans. Among the users of primary care, mental health, women's specific, and all outpatient services, patients' annual utilization rates were similar. Improved service options for women's specific care and mental health visits may help rural women veterans access care. Telehealth technologies and increased outreach, perhaps peer-based, should be considered. Other recommendations for VA policy and planning include increasing caregiver support options, providing consistency for mental health services, and revising medical encounter coding procedures. © 2013 National Rural Health Association.

  19. Staff Perceptions of Key Factors Guiding Nursing Home Search and Selection Within the Veterans Health Administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Edward Alan; Gidmark, Stefanie; Gadbois, Emily; Rudolph, James L; Intrator, Orna

    2017-06-21

    Veterans enter nursing homes (NHs) for short-term postacute, rehabilitation, respite, or end-of-life care. They also enter NHs on a long-term basis due to frailty, disability, functional deficits, and cognitive impairment. Little is known about how a particular NH is chosen once the decision to enter a NH has been made. This study identified VA staff perceptions of the key factors influencing the search and selection of NHs within the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). Data derived from 35 semistructured interviews with discharge planning and contracting staff from 12 Veterans Affairs Medical Centers (VAMCs). VA staff placed a premium on Veteran and family preferences in the NH selection process, though VA staff knowledge and familiarity with placement options established the general parameters within which NH placement decisions were made. Geographic proximity to Veterans' homes and families was a major factor in NH choice. Other key considerations included Veterans' specialty care needs (psychiatric, postacute, ventilator) and Veteran/facility demographics (age, race/ethnicity, Veteran status). VA staff tried to remain neutral in NH selection, thus instructing families to visit facilities and review publicly available quality data. VA staff report that amenities (private rooms, activities, smoking) and aesthetics (cleanliness, smell, layout, décor) often outweighed objective quality indicators in Veteran and family decision making. Findings suggest that VAMCs facilitate Veteran and family decision making around NH selection. They also suggest that VAMCs endeavor to identify and recruit a broader array of higher quality NHs to better match the specific needs of Veterans and families to the choice set available.

  20. Alcohol and drug misuse, abuse, and dependence in women veterans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoggatt, Katherine J; Jamison, Andrea L; Lehavot, Keren; Cucciare, Michael A; Timko, Christine; Simpson, Tracy L

    2015-01-01

    We conducted a systematic literature review on substance misuse, abuse, and dependence in women veterans, including National Guard/reserve members. We identified 837 articles published between 1980 and 2013. Of 56 included studies, 32 reported rates of alcohol misuse, binge drinking, or other unhealthy alcohol use not meeting diagnostic criteria for abuse or dependence, and 33 reported rates of drug misuse or diagnosed alcohol or drug use disorders. Rates ranged from 4% to 37% for alcohol misuse and from 7% to 25% for binge drinking; among Veterans Health Administration (VA) health-care system outpatients, rates ranged from 3% to 16% for substance use disorder. Studies comparing women veterans and civilians reported no clear differences in binge or heavy drinking. Substance misuse rates were generally lower among women veterans than men veterans. Substance misuse was associated with higher rates of trauma, psychiatric and medical conditions, and increased mortality and suicide rates. Most studies included only VA patients, and many used only VA medical record data; therefore, the reported substance misuse rates likely do not reflect true prevalence. Rates also varied by assessment method, source of data, and the subgroups studied. Further efforts to develop epidemiologically valid prevalence estimates are needed to capture the true health burden of substance misuse in women veterans, particularly those not using VA care. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health 2015. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.