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News Releases

 VA, DOD study a major breakthrough for understanding PTSD - WASHINGTON — Researchers from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Defense (DOD) recently released findings of a new study called Prospective Post-Traumatic Stress disorder Symptom Trajectories in Active Duty and Separated Military Personnel, which examines Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms in Veterans, compared with active-duty populations. (3/24/17)

 VA and GAO Agree: Appeals Reform Needed - WASHINGTON — In response to a report released by the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) report, “VA Disability Benefits: Additional Planning Would Enhance Efforts to Improve the Timeliness of Appeals Decisions,” the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) released the following statement: (3/23/17)

 Disabled Veterans to attend annual Winter Sports Clinic hosted by VA and DAV - WASHINGTON – Nearly 400 injured Veterans and active-duty military members will join volunteers and leading medical and rehabilitative professionals from across the nation for the 31st National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, scheduled March 26-31 in Snowmass Village (near Aspen), Colorado. (3/22/17)

 VA fixes Veterans Crisis Line - WASHINGTON — In response to the recently released VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) report that reviewed processes from June 6 through Dec. 15, 2016, of the Veterans Crisis Line (VCL), the Department of Veterans Affairs released the following statement: The Department of Veterans Affairs is proud to announce that the challenges with the Veterans Crisis Line have been resolved. Prior to the opening of our new Atlanta call center, our call rollover rate often exceeded 30 percent. Our current call rollover rate is less than 1 percent, with over 99 percent of all calls being answered by the VCL. (3/21/17)

VA Establishes Commission to Recommend Under Secretary for Benefits - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced the establishment of a search commission to help identify candidates for the position of Under Secretary for Benefits.  (3/15/17)

VA Establishes Commission to Recommend Under Secretary for Benefits - VA Establishes Commission to Recommend Under Secretary for Benefits WASHINGTON —The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced the establishment of a search commission to help identify candidates for the position of Under Secretary for Benefits. The Under Secretary for Benefits is the senior official within the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), which oversees a variety of benefits and services to service members, Veterans and their families. Search commission candidates will be selected based on criteria governed by law, along with appropriate skills, knowledge and attributes as leaders, managers and educators. The commission is a prerequisite to the president’s appointment of a successful candidate, subject to Senate confirmation. By law, the appointment is made without regard to political affiliation and solely on the basis of demonstrated ability, both in fiscal management and in the administration of programs of VBA or of similar content and scope. VBA includes a network of 56 regional offices and more than 21,800 employees. Nearly 4 million Veterans currently receive compensation for disabilities incurred in service or pensions for wartime Veterans, who become totally disabled in civilian life. In addition, more than a half million widows, children and parents of deceased Veterans are paid survivor compensation or death pensions. Other programs administered by the Under Secretary for Benefits include: education benefits, vocational rehabilitation and employment for Veterans, and life insurance; as well as VA-guaranteed home loans for both active-duty personnel and Veterans. The commission, once named, is expected to complete its work by April 20. For more information about this position, go to https://www.usajobs.gov/getjob/viewdetails/447997000 . ###  (3/15/17)

VA’s rule establishes presumption of service connection for diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in water supply at Camp Lejeune - WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) regulations to establish presumptions for the service connection of eight diseases associated with exposure to contaminants in the water supply at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, are effective as of today. (3/14/17)

Statement from VA Secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin on the Passing of Organ Transplant Pioneer Dr. Thomas E. Starzl - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and the nation as a whole, have benefited from the work of Dr. Thomas E. Starzl, who died March 4 at age 90. Dr. Starzl, regarded as the “father of transplantation,” is credited with performing the first successful liver transplant. As a transplant surgeon and research scientist for more than 50 years, he greatly advanced the science of organ transplantation.  (3/10/17)

VA Secretary Announces Intention to Expand Mental Health Care to Former Service members - WASHINGTON – Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin while testifying in a House Veterans Affairs Committee hearing on March 7, 2017, announced his intention to expand provisions for urgent mental health care needs to former service members with other-than-honorable (OTH) administrative discharges. This move marks the first time a VA Secretary has implemented an initiative specifically focused on expanding access to assist former OTH service members who are in mental health distress and may be at risk for suicide or other adverse behaviors. (3/8/17)

VA partnership provides community organizations with path to support homeless Veterans - WASHINGTON — Military Outreach USA, a partner of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), recently launched a program to encourage communities to connect with local VA facilities and help VA provide support to homeless or recently homeless Veterans and their families.  (3/3/17)

VA study highlights benefits of enhanced aspirin in preventing certain cancers - WASHINGTON — Researchers know of aspirin’s benefits in preventing certain ailments — from cardiovascular disease to most recently colorectal cancer. But while the link to those two conditions was made, researchers also questioned how and if this “wonder drug” could work to ward off other types of cancers.  (3/1/17)

Statement of Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin on Acting Deputy Secretary - We welcome Mr. Scott Blackburn, to the role of Acting Deputy Secretary for the Department of Veterans Affairs, effective February 26, 2017. He is currently the Executive Director, MyVA Taskforce. Scott is a strong advocate for our Veterans and VA employees.  (2/24/17)

Statement of Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin on Senior Personnel - Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Chief of Staff Robert (Bob) Snyder to retire Ms. Vivieca Wright-Simpson to serve as Interim VA Chief of Staff (2/24/17)

VA supports Great American Spit Out - The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) is urging Veterans with smokeless tobacco habits to participate in the “Great American Spit Out” on Feb. 23.  (2/22/17)

VA offering up to $8 million in grants for adaptive-sports programs that aid disabled Veterans - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is providing up to $8 million in grants to fund adaptive-sports programs that offer activities for disabled Veterans and members of the armed forces who have disabilities, VA announced Feb. 22.  (2/22/17)


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