A new VA center seeks emerging therapies to enhance veterans’ physical and mental well-being.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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….
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.
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.
Veteran preference is in the news again, with new legislation proposing new limits. Former Homeland Security Chief Human Capital Officer Jeff Neal says that’s a big deal, becausey veteran preference is a kind of third rail of civil service reform.
Most of the attention focused on the Veterans Affairs Department in the last couple of years has had to do with firing people. Giving VA more flexibility to demote or get rid of people who perform poorly. But now a bill looks at something a little more positive: how to recruit and hire top talent at VA. Tim McManus, the vice president for education at the Partnership for Public Service has studied the bill, and joins Federal Drive with Tom Temin with analysis of H.R. 5526.
The Veterans Affairs Department says it’s earning back trust and confidence from the veterans it serves, and employee engagement within the department is also improving. This comes roughly 10 days before the VA Commission on Care is expected to pitch a major overhaul to the department’s health care and personnel systems.
Veterans Affairs Secretary Bob McDonald says Congress needs to support the agency through reform legislation and full funding if lawmakers want to see the transformation so many of them are calling for.