At least the VA has a plan…

Unlike a number of other locations/organizations…

As the number of active COVID-19 cases among its patients declined slightly in late May, VA announced a three-part plan for resuming operations at its facilities in the coming months. The effort will largely depend on local COVID-19 conditions, including a declining number of patients with symptoms, a reduction in those testing positive and widespread availability of testing. While the VA Central Office has drafted a tiered plan for operations, decisions will be made at the local level and may not be in line with other state or federal reopening goals, VA officials said. “A central planning solution for resuming regular operations makes no sense here because some areas of the country will take longer to recover, while other areas have seen minimal cases,” VA Secretary Wilkie said in a release. “That’s why we’re letting local conditions dictate our next steps.”

The first phase, to occur within the next month, will largely consist of assessments by VA facilities to determine the risks and impact of increasing operations, such as non- emergency procedures like clinical visits and lab tests and admissions to spinal cord injury units. Officials will also explore the capacity for community health care providers to resume seeing veteran patients. In this phase, VBA will increase virtual hearings and formulate plans to resume face- to-face compensation and pension exams, while the National Cemetery Administration will prepare for resuming memorial services and burials that will be held later.

Phase 2 will include expanding non-emergency procedures and medical visits to hospitals and clinics; reopening the department’s Fisher Houses; resuming memorial services and burials with military honors, with limited attendance based on local conditions; and in-person services at VBA regional offices, by appointment. The final phase will build on the others: resuming visitor access to all VA health facilities, including nursing homes, expanding services at VHA and VBA locations, and resuming all other normal operations. VA officials said the work will be done with employee health and safety in mind, and all criteria and parameters “must be met before starting the phases and may precipitate a return to an earlier phase.”

“The pandemic is not over, and VA continues to provide response efforts,” the plan notes. “The timeline for moving through this transition process will be dependent on the
ability to minimize and control exposure and infection levels and maintain a constant decrease over time.” VA’s cemeteries, benefit administrators and Board of Veterans
Appeals will use the same approach in determining when and how to resume activities such as interments and face-to-face meetings with veterans about their status, it said.

As of May 8, 8,137 veteran VA patients were confirmed to have contracted the novel coronavirus since the start of the pandemic and 619 had died. In other words, 7.6% death rate, MUCH lower than the nursing homes in WA, NY, NJ, and other places.


At least the VA has a plan… — 11 Comments

    • Gah, I didn’t catch that and I’m a math guy. And I already sent that tidbit to a friend who works at the VA. Now I have to send a retraction.

    • Sadly, that 7.6% rate is still better than many of the nursing homes in the states that were forcing acceptance of the infected.

  1. Depends on the age distribution and other aggravating conditions to include service-related injury. I suspect the 65+ group showed most deaths, andthe rest being 25-45 with breathing, compromised immunity (many bugs, many causes), or mobility issues.

    All it’d take is a couple of active cases to shed virus and start a fire in the paint locker.

  2. Although the VA having a plan, tailorable to local conditions, makes me wonder if the apocalypse is closer than we think.

    • Since President Trump took over, there has actually been real reform occurring. Well, except for the stuff the Donks got blocked from happening by using lawfare and liberal judges.

      Now if this had happened during the Lightbringer’s reign of terror, that would definitely have been a sign of End Times.

  3. That seems to me to be a pretty good rate. I’m 67, and according to a graph in the Business Insider (recently updated, but I don’t see the actual publication date), the death rate for my age group of 65-74 is 10.4%.

    I’m glad, glad, glad that the VA is planning to re-institute more of the normal services. My first-born son (age 37) was retired medically from the Army in 2015, after his run-in with a Taliban 105 in 2013; he still struggles with ____, ____, and ____, despite huge improvements.

    About two months ago, he wasn’t able to receive appropriate medical care for what the ER said was COVID-19, because facilities weren’t available. Therefore, he self-quarantined in his bedroom and gritted it out. (NOTE: his PCP said it probably wasn’t COVID-19, but was not able to offer an alternative diagnosis.{also note: he refused to have us notified about what was going on until he was over it.}) It would have been nice to be able to take him to the VA hospital in Decatur, where I have received excellent care in past years.

  4. Hey Old NFO;

    *wow* the VA making sense…..I am impressed. Perhaps one of the best things President Trump did was put reform to that troubled agency.

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