Veterans Affairs

  • For third time, OSC says burdens on whistleblowers are too high

    The Office of Special Counsel offered a new approach for analyzing whistleblower retaliation cases, as the agency released its third amicus brief opposing higher burdens on whistleblowers. This particular case involved an employee at the Veterans Affairs Department.

  • Veterans omnibus hits ‘stumbling block’ in Senate

    Senate Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) said the Veterans First Act, which the department itself is actively supporting, has hit a few roadblocks. He hasn’t yet been able to bring the omnibus to a vote in the full Senate but said he is optimistic Congress will pass new veterans legislation this year.

  • Veteran suicide rate up 30 percent since 2001

    In today’s Top Federal Headlines, the Veterans Affairs Department releases results of its analysis of over 55 million records spanning over 35 years related to veteran suicide.

  • Better DoD, VA collaboration at center of Clinton’s veterans policy

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is pushing for better integration and communication between the VA and Defense Department in her veterans policy plan. She proposes restructuring the Veterans Health Administration but specifically opposes efforts to privatize VA health care.

  • VA to vets: Tell us what works for you

    A new VA center seeks emerging therapies to enhance veterans’ physical and mental well-being.

  • Nick Dahl: Unlocking VA’s prison payment problem

    When a veteran goes to federal prison, his or her payouts from the Veterans Benefits Administration are supposed to go down. But, they don’t always, and that has cost VBA tens of millions of dollars. Nick Dahl, director of the Bedford Audit Operations Division of the VA’s inspector general office, tells Federal Drive with Tom Temin about a new report that tells how VBA could fix the problem.

  • Anura Fernando: VA teams with UL on setting health IT standards

    The Veterans Affairs Department and Underwriters Laboratories have signed an agreement to develop cybersecurity standards for health devices, such as pacemakers. Anura Fernando, principal engineer for medical software and systems interoperability at UL, fills in Federal Drive with Tom Temin.

  • J. David Cox: Union objects to VA health-care recommendations

    The congressionally-appointed Commission on Care has issued its final report on how to overhaul the Veterans Benefits Administration. It calls for greater use of local, private sector networks to augment the work of VA hospitals and clinics. The recommendations have also drawn the fire of the American Federation of Government Employees. J. David Cox, AFGE’s national president tells Federal Drive with Tom Temin why he objects.

  • Nancy Schlichting: How the VA can improve health care delivery

    Poor access to health care at the Veterans Affairs Department came to light two years ago and sparked nearly continuous upheaval ever since. Appointed by Congress, the Commission on Care has issued its final recommendations for overhauling how VA delivers its basic mission, providing health care for veterans. Commission Chairwoman Nancy Schlichting gives Federal Drive with Tom Temin a highlight.

  • OSC whistleblower cases hit record highs in 2015

    More federal employees turned to the Office of Special Counsel with prohibited personnel practice or whistleblower complaints in 2015, and the agency resolved more cases than any other year in its history.

  • RIFs, a new CIO and 3 other takeaways from VA Commission on Care

    Among the VA Commission on Care’s 18 recommendations are proposals that could have major implications for the Veterans Health Administration workforce, from its size and scope to its overall organizational structure. VA Secretary Bob McDonald said the department will respond to the commission’s report in the coming weeks.

  • VA Commission on Care releases long list of recommendations

    In today’s Top Federal Headlines, the House passes a bill to extend Veterans Affairs’ expedited removal process for senior executives to all SES members and the VA Commission on Care releases its long list of recommendations for the agency….

  • Repackaged House bill extends same controversial VA firing procedures to all SES

    The House passed a bill that would change the way agencies discipline and remove federal employees and members of the Senior Executive Service. One provision would put all SES members under the same, expedited disciplinary process that senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department had until the Justice Department challenged its constitutionality.

  • VA watchdogs: Results, responsibility needed for agency IT updates

    Leaders at the Veterans Affairs Department pledge to Congress that the money and time they’ve been given to help overhaul the agency’s IT systems will not be in vain.