Jun 12, 2014

Barbara S. KinoskyIt won’t be easy, but the veterans deserve better.

It’s easy to focus on what is broken, but it’s harder to understand why things are broken.  Veterans Affairs (VA) is the second largest cabinet level agency with a budget of over $165 billion.   But the VA has not had the financial resources it really needs to provide the type of care that the veterans deserve.  Here is my take on the VA:

  • Give the VA the budget necessary to hire the doctors and nurses our veterans need. Also allow veterans to go out of the VA system to get medical care when the VA cannot meet critical patient needs in a timely manner.   Reimburse them for those costs.
  • We’ve all read about the lack of electronic patient records at the VA, but that is only part of the problem.  The fiefdoms within the VA make the Balkan States look like the Girl Scouts singing around a campfire.  So, some areas of the VA have adequate IT and some have antiquated IT.  
  • Go back to the roots of why the VA was created in the first place.  Let the Agency be a “one stop” service organization for our veterans and their families. Train or re-train the VA on the mission.  Launch an “executive education” program to keep the leadership’s focus sharp on the mission.  Why are the employees there? They are there to serve the veterans.  While there are many dedicated employees, there are also many just focused on the numbers reports.  Retrain and motivate the workforce.

Centre Consulting and its award-winning Federal Contracting Institute® (FCI) training division , is a Woman-Owned Small Business, providing integrated training, human capital, and legal services to government and industry clients. Founded in 2002, Centre is a Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WEBNC)-certified Woman-Owned Small Business headquartered in Vienna, Virginia. Please join us for our next training course, Boot Camp for VA Schedules Contracting June 25-26th.

It won’t be easy, but the veterans deserve better.

What are your suggestions on fixing the VA?

Best,
Barbara

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