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Progress on Veterans Crisis Line improvements already underway

23 Feb, 2016 no comments News

The VA Office of Inspector General’s February 11, 2016 report on the Veteran’s Crisis Line reflects issues found there as of the end of December 2014.  It is important for Veterans and our key stakeholders to know that VA undertook actions to strengthen Veterans Crisis Line operations long before publication of the inspector general report. The goal is to make the Veterans Crisis Line nothing short of a world class crisis response center. Before outlining these actions, I want to reiterate that the Veterans Crisis Line in Canandaigua is staffed…

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Going beyond the numbers to better serve Veterans who are homeless

12 Feb, 2016 no comments Health
Going beyond the numbers to better serve Veterans who are homeless

As a doctor, I learned that data on a chart or in a report could only tell me so much about my patients. Talking with them face-to-face is how I got beyond the numbers, and grasped the true status of their health and well-being. Now, as VA Under Secretary for Health, I take a similar approach with the Veterans that VA cares for and serves, including those who are homeless. That’s why I’m heading out tonight with VA leaders, staff and community volunteers for the 2016 Point-in-Time (PIT) Count: To…

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Veterans should remain on high alert for IRS impersonators

12 Feb, 2016 no comments News
Veterans should remain on high alert for IRS impersonators

As tax-filing season begins, Veterans should be aware of people contacting them who claim to be from the Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury. These IRS tax impersonators have been using phone calls and emails to take millions of dollars from taxpayers in every state in the country. The callers tell intended victims they owe taxes and must pay using a pre-paid debit card, money order or a wire transfer. The scammers threaten those who refuse to pay with being charged for a criminal violation, a grand jury indictment, immediate…

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VA nurse (Army Veteran) loses 215 pounds

12 Feb, 2016 no comments Health

Television audiences nationwide were amazed to see a Washington, D.C. VA Medical Center nurse shrink from 531 pounds to an astounding 316 pounds. The Desert Storm Army Veteran shared his story and life-changing transformation last year on ABC’s Extreme Weight Loss. John Robinson’s journey began about four years ago as a simple road trip to accompany a friend who was auditioning for the television show.  While there, the show producers convinced John, a former offensive lineman with Winston-Salem State University and the New Jersey Red Dogs (Arena Football League) to…

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The Post-9/11 GI Bill: It can change your life

12 Feb, 2016 no comments News
The Post-9/11 GI Bill: It can change your life

A college degree is a must-have if you want to be a strong candidate for consideration at a job with VA. As an Associate Director for Recruitment Marketing at VA I know how important the GI Bill® is while earning that degree. Earning a college degree seems like an expensive proposition, but for today’s Veteran that shouldn’t be seen as unsurmountable. Especially since, according to a Pew Research Center report on higher education, a college diploma is more valuable than ever. Among the findings: A college education is worth more today:…

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