Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

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Stocker Steve
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Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

Postby Stocker Steve » Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:08 am

I have several senior Korean vet relatives who seem to be stuck in the VA system:
- One has decent health and it seems to work OK for him. Periodic check ups and lots of pills.
- Another has multiple chronic conditions and gets a lot of phone calls from nurses. Since he is hard of hearing -- this does not work very well.
- A third appears to have dementia and is in a slow moving pipeline of tests, retests, referrals, and an occasional phone call from a nurse. Since he is easily confused this is not working well either.

I have asked if/when they should pay up for some (better) private health care? They have the money but "free" is tough to compete with... :nod: Any tips on getting better VA service, or situations where one should just walk away from the VA system?
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Re: Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

Postby farmguy » Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:23 am

I am with the VA in St. Cloud and Alexandria Minnesota, Viet Nam vet. I can honestly say that I have had no complaints, treated well and in an efficient respectful manner. Alex is a smaller facility so it is much easier to navigate. farmguy
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Stocker Steve
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Re: Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

Postby Stocker Steve » Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:08 pm

farmguy wrote:I can honestly say that I have had no complaints, treated well and in an efficient respectful manner. farmguy


That is great. My question is more around what are good options if you live in a remote area and need specialized healthcare?
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Re: Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

Postby bball » Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:54 pm

I have found, in my professional career, that nothing moves quickly with the VA and virtually everything needs approval or authorization. As vets age, and their healthcare needs become more immediate, the VA becomes a less effective option for treatment due to the delays. We have gone through this with my wife's grandfather(WW2 vet) and I see it regularly at work when we attempt to transfer care from our facility to a VA facility. The care at the VA facilities are generally very good...if you can get in.
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Re: Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

Postby bbirder » Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:09 pm

Stocker,
I am in the VA system and see a Dr there every six months, receive most of my prescriptions thru them. I am also on Medicare as I assume your friends are. There is nothing to stop you from seeing any private practicioner you want. I see more than one and the VA has never blinked an eye. In fact my VA Dr is aware that I see others and has told me that if they prescribe some new scripts just let him know and he will order them for me. Bottom line, if they need specialized care and have Medicare go for it. It does not disqualify you.
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Re: Tips for Working with VA Health Care ?

Postby msplmtneer » Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:36 pm

I am in VA health care also and I haven't had any problems yet, but if they need care that they can't get at their local clinic or they are more than 50 miles from a VA faculy they what is called Veterans Choice.
Here is their phone # 1-866-606-8198. :tiphat:
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