Veterans Updates Announced at the American Legion Conference

by Rachel Baker on August 27, 2014

There were a lot of announcements yesterday by both the President and the VA Secretary, from their appearances at the American Legion’s Annual Conference.

If you are interested, you can see the President’s speech here at CSPAN

If you are interested, you can see Veterans Affair Secretary McDonald speech here at CSPAN

Here is the discussion on improved mental health services for veterans at the VA Blogs and the press release from the VA regarding the actions and recommendations implementation they will be taking in the future.

Improving the mental health needs of Servicemembers, Veterans and their families

In remarks to Veterans attending the 96th annual American Legion National Convention today, the president announced executive actions that will allow the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense to improve the mental health services they provide to Veterans, Servicemembers and their families.

The 19 actions build upon the president’s 2012 executive order , which afforded VA the ability to hire 1,600 mental health professionals, expand the capacity of the Veterans Crisis Line and enhance its partnerships with community mental health providers.

Three of the new actions will improve the continuity of care for Servicemembers transitioning from Tri-Care to VA care by:

VA Outlines Actions Taken to Improve Access to Care, Implement Recommendations from the Office of Inspector General

The final report updates the information previously provided by the OIG in its Interim Report and contains final results from the review of the PVAHCS. VA outlined key action plans that expand access to care, improve staffing for primary care, and accountability measures in response to the final OIG report.

In response to recommendations in the May 2014 OIG Interim Report, the following improvements were initiated in Phoenix and across the VA system:

As of August 15, the Veterans Health Administration has reached out to over 266,000 Veterans to get them off wait lists and into clinics.

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