One of VA's ongoing missions is to provide a positive health care experience for all Veterans. That mission includes focusing on Veterans' needs, working with health care providers who want to make a difference, and providing a safe healing environment.
Below are some stories from both Veterans and VA health care providers that illustrate the many ways VA is committed to creating a positive health care experience:
Veteran, Jerome Dunn has had at least two mini strokes and one major stroke, but he doesn’t let anything stop him. With VA’s clinical support, Mr. Dunn works full-time as a housekeeper on a clinical floor. “I love my job,” he says. He clearly takes pride in completing the washing, cleaning, sweeping, polishing and trash collection that are job requirements, even though he is acutely aware of his disabilities. “My left leg is weak and it sometimes gives me trouble because I have to walk and go upstairs a lot.” He’s careful to maintain a regimen of medications to prevent blood clots and assist his memory.” An engaging man, he finds his slurred speech frustrating. “My words used to come right out one after the other.” But, he makes the effort to communicate because he likes interacting with others. Mr. Dunn starts his tour at 3am, to minimize being in a position where he might not be able assist a frail patient.
It was a slight tooth ache that brought Marine Corps Veteran Joe Garza to the Fort Worth VA Outpatient Clinic for a quick check up. His gums and tonsils were swollen, and over-the-counter medicine did not help. His doctor thought he may have an infection and decided to do some blood work as a precaution. Joe remembers his doctor saying he needed to go to Dallas VA Medical Center immediately. He could not imagine why he had to go to Dallas for a simple infection. Several hours and multiple lab tests later, the ER doctor determined the cause of Joe's mouth pain and swelling - leukemia. He remembers that moment two years ago like it was yesterday."My thinking stopped after that. I didn't hear anymore after he told me I had cancer," Joe said.