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Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs


VA Announces Proposed Increase in Pay Ranges for VA Physicians and Dentists to Recruit Best and Brightest to Serve Veterans

September 17, 2014, 08:00:00 AM

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                               

September 17, 2014

VA Announces Proposed Increase in Pay Ranges for VA Physicians and Dentists to Recruit Best and Brightest

to Serve Veterans

WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced it will publish a notification in the Federal Register which increases the maximum rates of annual pay for in-coming Veterans Health Administration (VHA) physicians and dentists as part of VA Secretary Robert McDonald’s nation-wide recruitment initiative to hire more clinicians and expand Veterans’ access to care.

 “At VA, we have a noble and inspiring mission - to serve Veterans, their survivors and dependents. There is no higher calling,” said VA Secretary Robert McDonald. “We are committed to hiring more medical professionals across the country to better serve Veterans and expand their access to timely, high-quality care.”

 Dr. Carolyn M. Clancy, Interim Under Secretary for Health echoed the Secretary’s comments. “With more competitive salaries for physicians and dentists, VHA is in position to attract and hire the best and brightest to treat Veterans.”

The updated pay tables propose an increase in pay of $20,000 to $35,000 annually for physicians and dentists who are providing care for Veterans. There will be no change to the pay tables for physicians who serve in leadership roles.

This proposed increase in pay is just one aspect of the recruiting initiative that Secretary McDonald has directed to bring the best and brightest health care professionals to VA.

Additional steps include:

  • Collaborating on a new nursing academic partnership (VA Nursing Academic Partnerships or VANAP) focused on psychiatric and mental health care to build stronger, mutually beneficial relationships between nursing schools and VA facilities.
  • Partnering with the Department of Defense Health Affairs, Army, Navy, and Air Force to improve recruitment of recently or soon to be discharged health care professionals.
  • Expanding a pilot program to bring combat medics and corpsmen in to VA facilities as clinicians
  • Improving the credentialing process for VA and DoD health care providers which will involve sharing credentials to speed up the process.
  • Expanding the loan repayment program, as included in the recently passed Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act.

VHA has been at the forefront of research and development, education, and health care delivery.  Not only is VA the second largest national employer, VA is also the largest employer of health care providers. This includes three Nobel Prize recipients in Medicine or Physiology and seven Lasker Award recipients.  VA pioneered and developed electronic medical records and Veterans receiving VA’s in and outpatient care give VA higher satisfaction ratings than patients at private hospitals. Over 70% of all U.S. doctors received training at VA. In fact, VA facilities train 62,000 medical students and residents, 23,000 nurses, and 33,000 trainees in other health profession fields—each year.

Among other contributions, VA researchers developed the implantable cardiac pacemaker; conducted the first successful liver transplants; and then went on to create the nicotine patch to help smokers quit smoking. VA crafted artificial limbs that move naturally when stimulated by electrical impulses from the brain and identified the genetic risk factors for schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, and Werner’s syndrome.  Also, it was a VA nurse that designed the use of bar-code software for administering medications to our patients.

Information about working in VA health care can be found at www.vacareers.va.gov

 

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