VA Choice Program A Failed Joke Says Senator

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Veterans Choice Program

Benjamin KrauseLast Friday, GOP Sen. Mark Kirk admitted the VA Choice Program is a failed joke in a letter to Secretary Bob McDonald despite attempts to fix it.

How is it that all attempts to fix VA require additional efforts to fix the fixes? Talk about job security where contractors and employees are added to the payroll to fix the problems created by deficient employees no one can fire.

RELATED: Jon Stewart Nails It On VA Choice Program Absurdity

OIG INVESTIGATES VA CHOICE PROGRAM PROBLEMS

Sen. Kirk’s remarks were in response to an OIG report indicating Colorado Springs VA failed to add 56 veterans to the Veterans Choice List (VCL). Addition to the list would allow those veterans to access non-VA health care. Just getting added to the list is taking months, which ameliorates the benefit of speedy access to health care the program was intended to confer.

In a letter to Secretary Bob McDonald, Sen. Kirk wrote:

“I consistently hear reports that the Department of Veterans Affairs is delaying the process of veterans’ requests to use the Choice Act, delaying the approval of provider participation in Choice, and delaying payments to participating providers.”

VA CHOICE PROGRAM UNDERCUT

The agency has grossly hindered any attempts to increase accessibility to non-VA care the program was intended to provide. Many veterans believe VA insiders are attempting to undercut the VA Choice Program to redirect funds while ensuring veterans are stuck in the system.

RELATED: VA Choice Program Reversal Increases Access

Previous claims from anti-veterans rights supporters claimed veterans did not want non-VA care and pointed to the lack of usage of the program as evidence. We now know the lack of use is really the result of sabotage within the agency to harm veterans by withholding care for private agendas.

Sen. Kirk continued his letter:

“Given the VHA’s demonstrated inability to provide even basic care, let alone comprehensive services, I find it particularly disappointing that VHA continues to stymie the private sector’s attempts to address veteran patient needs.”

THROW OUT THE BATHWATER?

Perhaps this is an instance where we need to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Here, the baby is likely the special interest of union employees and big bonus receiving health care executives.

When is it time to rock-n-roll with that bathwater?

Source: http://dailycaller.com/2016/02/06/gop-senator-vas-choice-program-still-obviously-a-failed-joke/

Don Karg
Don Karg
02/09/2016 Dear Benjamin Krause, The Court papers are something to view. The Cocktails remain the same and the treatments are not available [Waiting Periods being shuffled]. The engagement and integration throughout the system is not seen. That is why this Choice Program is a Joke and Attorneys throughout this nation call the whole damn thing a “Sad Joke.” But is not a “Sad Joke” it is Treason at its best and few utter the word boldly. Enjoy the read, Sincerely,… Read more »
namnibor
You asked, “When is it time to rock-n-roll with that bathwater?” Pretty soon but I predict that does not happen anytime soon. Why? Because the VA has already quite quickly figured out “The Choice Act” is a HUGE cookie jar of a$$et$ always there for the plucking. No one is holding the VA’s face against the wall, demanding accountability aggressively and we have already seen the recent song and dance that the VA calls accountability….NOT. Wait for it….I predict the… Read more »
namnibor

I should add that we Veterans are the “shrimp” in that “Gumbo”. No Bob, I did NOT say “Dumbo”…clean out those ears and get back to whatever you were not doing 🙂

crazy elf
crazy elf
@namnibor Did you hear where Shinazi, the doc who took over the VHA portion of VA, RESIGNED on, I think, Feb 1st or 2nd. Because the Congressional Committee wanted answers over that HEP-C “miracle drug” he allegedly came up with. And sold to a drug company for millions of $$$$! All while he worked with VA equipment and on VA property, allegedly for just a few hours a day. He didn’t last long at all as the new “Chief in… Read more »
crazy elf
crazy elf

P.S.
Where is all this “diverted monies” going?
I have a theory. It’s NOT going within the halls of VA! Therefore, it’s NOT going anywhere which will help veterans!

namnibor
I ha not read that until today about Dr. Shinazi’s resignation. I guess when Pleading The Fifth is **just not good enough**, you make a hissy-fit and resign….but still collect Million$ from your VA Developed Drug that he sells back to VA for top dollars??! Amazing, simply amazing. @crazyelf- Pretty sure VA Trolls are posting on yesterday’s article and one of the two is not so obvious, asking where you live and your local newspaper…something seriously stinks in the wood… Read more »
subordinateblog

Some thing needs fixen

James

The choice program is contractors two months still no reply.except to tell me someone will contact me probably the disruptive committee.

Daniel Gray
Daniel Gray
Hmm, a joke? Naaa I call it what it is, a clusterf**k! Card says that you have to call before using it, or that the VA will not pay for the doctor or hospital visit. So I guess that means if I am having a heart attack I have to call the VA BEFORE the ambulance? Card says the VA has the right to refuse payment. Ok then why in the he!! did you give it to us to use… Read more »
namnibor

You got that right, it is a “cluster ****”, and engineered with tons of red tape in a complex spider web in a way only the VA could muster up.

crazy elf
crazy elf

I understand McCain had something to do with the original bill. I believe that answers our VA’s “Cluster Fμ€k”!

crazy elf
crazy elf

Yea. I gave two newspapers here in Florida. Hope “Sunshine” isn’t. If s/he is, oh well, good luck finding me lmao!

91Veteran
91Veteran
The Choice card is administered by HealthNet, and the VA told me they consider HealthNet to be a third party payer for any Choice appointments, so the VA could care less if you are getting treatment or not, or getting billed. When I called HealthNet yesterday, I was told they are Veterans Choice, which has nothing to do with HealthNet. She claimed Veterans Choice acts as the middle man between VA and HealthNet. This was a disaster from the word… Read more »
namnibor
Congress giving the VA a blank check/fund transfer and expecting the VA to “do the right thing” is also insane. Our President stated he had FULL FAITH in VA Sec. and The VA to “do the right thing”. Define “thing”, please? Sad to hear of these nightmares you all or most at least, are dealing with. That would stress me out beyond belief wondering if the VA was going to pay the bill timely, then get sent to collections, and… Read more »
Sunshine

To anyone who is reads this can you give me your name of Local Newspaper because I want to find out if I can put I need in Classified ADS how to improve Veterans Healthcare. ……Semper Fi Thanks.

crazy elf
crazy elf

@Sunshine
My two local newspapers are;
1.) “The Daytona Beach News Journal”

2.) “The Orlando Sentinel” out of Orlando, Florida

Sunshine

crazy elf Thanks. ….SEMPER FI Stay Healthy.

Arnold Cabral

Have you crazy elf have you put your belief in your newspaper about your feelings about how to improve Veterans Healthcare. ….Semper Fi.

Timothy
Timothy

Daily Courier Prescott, Az.

How come I keep getting bills from providers that Choice sent me to for treatment, stating its been over 90 days with no payment so I’m responsible for it now. There goes my Credit Rating again due to the VA, for the Second, Third and Fouth time.

Sunshine

Timothy i know for a Fact you can place a Classified AD in the Daily Courier i did its not expensive. ….please reply back. ….SEMPER Fi liived in Prescott Valley, Arizona i go to PRESCOTT VETERAN MEDICAL FOR MY HEALTHCARE NEEDS.

James

Nice scam.forcing veterans to go back to the VA.by not paying the Bill’s.

I bet the VA will continue not to pay and veterans will have no choice.but to go to the VA.

And the VA keeping a list of all veterans that used the choise program and report those veterans as being disruptive.so they can punish them for using outside doctor’s.

Look at what they have done to veterans so far.I put nothing passed them.

Sunshine

DID YOU GET MY MESSAGE Timothy.

91Veteran
91Veteran
I have been carefully noting what the VA and Choice says regarding billing because I fully expect to get billed if I ever get an appointment. Choice blames providers for not properly billing, so they go after the easy money which is veterans. I am told by the VA that it is up to the veteran to contact the provider and Choice to make sure the billing is coded properly. That is bullshit. If Choice has provided an authorization number… Read more »
Arnold Cabral

Timothy do you work for Daily Courier which Veteran Medical Center you used Prescott, Phoenix, or Tucson hopefully you as Veterans can hooked up to Give these Politicians Hell.

Matt Sherwood
Matt Sherwood

I have been waiting since May of 2015 for Healthnet to pay for an MRI that I was authorized to have, now the hospital is coming after me. This program is a joke, I was authorized 26 chiropractic appointments with the same program. My chiropractor now refuses to see me until he gets paid from the 1st 5 appointments.

namnibor
@Matt You should contact your Congress Representatives and your local news and main stream news about your situation. I would contact Rep. Miller, whom is on Congressional Veterans Committee….does not matter in this case if you are one of his constituents in Florida, Rep. Miller being on the Congressional Veterans Committee makes him open game to each and every Veteran. Hope that helps. I know all that fine print on the “Choice Card” makes it about 5 ways the VA… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
Write up your Choice experience in as detailed a way as possible and mail them in a letter to Jeff Miller with a copy to your Congressman. The Government Accountability Office will be conducting an investigation into the Choice program starting this spring, and as many veterans as possible need to send them their comments so Congress knows what a disaster it has been. Several Senators and Congressmen have requested that investigation because they have been hearing from their constituents… Read more »
NamVet1969
NamVet1969

VA’s governmental bureaucracy is too entrenched and rigid to change, and, will remain this way as long as it, and, its unions, are isolated from free market forces.

Alan Cote
Alan Cote

I learned today that 2.4 Billion dollars were taken from VA to help Syrian refugee’s displaced in their civil war. Our government is paying them to come here and giving them Walmart gift cards to help them buy furniture and clothes.

js03

You hit it on the nose.

Dump the Unions and you will solve most of the problem. Once they can fire people for cause, accountability will improve.

Unions protect their own, not the Vets, they don’t fight for the taxpayer who foots the bill, they get the deal and then look away. They cant lose their jobs.

Andrea
Andrea

I have a low number of specialty providers in my area, even lower that accept Choice Program, but they would take the old Fee Basis. My massage Therapist is still waiting for their first 12 payments, but they won’t deny me treatment because of that, thankfully.

Timothy
Timothy
Good to hear you even got your approved. After going to a massage therapist for a while under Fee-Basis, Choice has turned my many request by my physician down because they say it now has to go to a licensed Physical Therapist which we all know won’t just do massage. They state there are no Massage Therapist in Network but I found after calling, that’s not the issue as much as they won’t approve licensed massage therapist unless they are… Read more »
Sunshine

RIGHT ON Timothy Choice Card is a waste of money and time.

Bruce Wallace
I don’t know what the Senator is complaining about, the Choice Program works great for me, uh, well, okay. Only because I choose not to go to the VA for anything anymore. This is because the Disruptive Behavior Committee and List system works so well too, and they use it to F with vets to cut their work load down knowing many of us will do the same thing I did, as in NEVER GO BACK TO THE VA FOR… Read more »
Ovez Japanwalla
Ovez Japanwalla

Same here. Northport VAMC, seems upset with me , FOIA- Financials, personal audit, submitted to VOIG , Director resigns, ( actually transferred) Chief Information Officer Retires. Now, Wilkes-Barre VAMC, October 2015, seeking Homeless Assistance, VA Police kind enough to ride the elevators with me, kept my car safe in parking lot.
Soon, going to spread my charm with Philadelphia VAMC. Any advice?
Hey, anybody else feel like a Targeted Individual ?

James
1 in a million.can’t even get them to call back with an appointment. I wish they would let me see everyone on the outside.but so many stories of the VA not paying and the veterans stuck fighting the VA to pay and after you call and call they will get pissed off and report you to the disruptive committee for complaining. Just do away with it and let veterans see whom ever they want and cut off the middle man… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
I read today the article in the Colorado Springs Gazette about the delays in care there. Right after reading it I called Senator Cory Gardner’s office and asked for his veterans affairs case manager. Based on that call, I have written up my experience with delayed care here in western Colorado, and in the lack of care using the Veterans Choice program. The Choice program is a giant disaster with no oversight by Congress, but Congress is finally waking up.… Read more »
yesIcompainloudly
yesIcompainloudly
I was approved for choice 1st program back in July for vascular surgery on my carotid artery. As you know, Healthnet is the company contracted by the VA to administer the program. Healthnet , which is a private company that does work for the Federal Government (they do Medicaid programs for states too) and is considered to be one of the top 10 worst companies in the U.S. (in company with Time Warner Cable and Comcast) for shitty customer service,… Read more »
James
You have a right to be mad.please be aware if you should contact the VA with your concerns. Make sure you don’t get your blood pressure up.the VA is quick to say you were disruptive and then your blood pressure will really go up. Some veterans don’t have to do anything and they were reported as being disruptive and punished and the VA does not care How you feel. This program was doomed from the start.it was the VAs plan.so… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
I won’t say I am happy to hear of your problems with HealthNet, but I am happy to hear you are holding them accountable. I have read a number of stories about how bad they are in paying claims in the civilian world and how bad their customer service is. I seriously despise a company like that taking so much money from the taxpayers, then screwing those same taxpayers. Given their history, I cannot fathom how such a company with… Read more »
crazy elf
crazy elf

Hey everyone.
My wife sent this article to me. It’s full of “drug abuse by VA employees”, “drug charges against VA employees”, giving heroin to elderly veterans “to speed up their death”, and much, much more! It’s definitely worth googling;

“Board reverses firing of another VA executive”
by Jazz Shaw

Also, when y’all Google this. There’s a bunch of reports by different individuals concerning this. If you’ll send this to Ben, I’d be grateful!
Maybe Beenie Baby can explain this one!

crazy elf
crazy elf
I will not respond to Beenie Baby. She evidently is a Democratic Liberal. She also is not researching the many reports coming out from many news sources. Which include military sources, VA-OIG, Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Denver Post, Los Angeles Times, VAWatchdog dot org, DAVReform dot org. and many more! She also referenced these “sources” as not being reputable! She also “claims” the numerous “veterans suicide rate…” (22 each day) cannot be blaimed entirely on the… Read more »
James
I think elf many veterans take their lives by the VA not treating them.maybe are $1 over the limit to qualify for care. Told they must be service connected for treatment.regional office denying their claim.making them feel like liers. Calling them drug seekes.their lazy.why don’t you just kill yourself. If veterans don’t know the secret word.I feel suicidal. If they don’t say I’m suicidal.the VA will make an appointment and send them on their way. Were will the homeless get… Read more »
namnibor
My favorite of Beenie so far is where she infers that “…Veterans CHOOSE to be Homeless…”, and while there is a % of any Homeless Populace that may well ‘choose’ to live totally off the grid, this is NOT true at least 90% of time. I have kept quiet and watched you all feed the troll….but since you mentioned something over here, I had to let out my inner steam about her generalized comments…almost in like she and hers are… Read more »
crazy elf
crazy elf

@namnibor & James
Did y’all Google the article I gave here? It’s brand new? I think it said Jan. 29th 2016!
The article even “talks” about how Gibson will not be sending her back to her position. Unless the judge orders it.
Y’all gotta read it. Read a couple of the articles. Each one has a little different spin.
You’ll love the mess VA got themselves into on this one!

Don
Don

Every program initiated by the VA fails! Sound programs cannot be effectively implemented by VA employees! Veterans are held hostage for medical care that benefits VA staff, VA Doctors and VA researchers! Give Veterans the liberty to obtain medical care privately rather than facing delays and death at the hands of the VA.

Todd B
Todd B
The worst part of this who thing is that I have had issue with the veterans Choice program and Senator Mark Kirk is my Senator from my state of Illinois. I have tried to get hold of him via phone calls and emails and have never gotten a response from him or his office. I luckily or unluckily have got a response from my congressman office. The issue that they state is that The VA Choice program is not monitored… Read more »
yesIcomplainloudly
yesIcomplainloudly
That’s RIGHT. Healthnet is administering this fucked up program with no oversight from anyone. The VA is just now assessing all the complaints coming into them from veterans on the program, and of course, the VA has NO ANSWERS for the veterans because they know LESS than the veterans on how this AIN’T working for anyone. By the way, senators (small s) do not respond to veterans in most any state. Representatives do so because they have to act like… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
In some respects, I think senators are listening a little closer now to vets than they used to. I think McCain, and senators in Wisconsin found out how quickly things can go sideways on them when a VA scandal breaks publicly, and vets start reporting they had contacted a senators office about problems and never heard from them. When I called my senators office yesterday and asked for his vets affairs case manager, she sounded rather concerned about what I… Read more »
James
Good luck.my experience is people will be glad to forward complaints to different agencies for the veterans.but that’s all that gets done. They return it to the very people doing the harm and those employees answer their own inquiries.even when they are the problem. Told by senators Bennett’s office.we can ask questions.but cannot do an investigation or force the VA to complete an investigation. The director of the Denver vamc told his office that they never coded my official medical… Read more »
yesIcomplain loudly
yesIcomplain loudly
I know what you are saying. It ultimately comes down to how the veteran approaches the senator’s office, how good verbally you can hang it, the type of person you happen to get on the phone, whether the senator is a Dem or Rep (Dem. senators offices will usually not want to tangle with Obama’s pick of BMcD; Rep. senator offices will listen and conduct as with you), etc. I’ll bet you are dealing with a republican senator’s office. Anyway,… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran

I certainly will provide an update. I will call tomorrow, then next week I will start calling daily.
Have you found it easy to get a supervisor on the phone? If I could get one on the phone I think I could rattle one enough to get them to provide some revealing information.
That has happened every time I have called so far because they get tongue tied and can’t answer my questions.
Yes it was a Republican senators office.

yes I complain loudly
yes I complain loudly
@ 91Vet: When the rep that first answers your phone call to the toll free number (of Choice), my tactic is to say something real nice like “I really like your name” or “you sound like you spent all day dealing with veterans complaints….isn’t this Choice program ridiculous? It certainly is wearing on all you reps, I could imagine”. They will then open up and be in agreement with you and in many cases will do whatever you ASK. I… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
Good answers. I haven’t worked my way to a supervisor yet, I figured I would see how many times they would give me the same BS excuse. I may have commented on this, but I found out a few days ago that the Choice provider wouldn’t even see me without an MRI first. I called my Primary Care doc Wednesday, and they said they would submit the request, and I would get a call from radiology. I expected to wait… Read more »
subordinateblog

You my friend, have style

KT
KT
You are correct in that Healthnet does not really have anyone following up on them. That it is why it is imperative that the Veterans constantly call Healthnet to make sure that they are making their appointments. Being a case manager at the VA, I am told that once a Veteran is switched over to a Choice Provider I am pretty much “hands off”. Well, ethically I just can’t do this because I need to make sure that my patients… Read more »
Don Avant
RE: How is it that all attempts to fix VA require additional efforts to fix the fixes? The reason is that the VA thrives on incompetence …And the reason for THAT is civil service protections….It’s difficult to impossible to fire an incompetent worker or manager so the VA has filled up with them. AND they all protect each with such vehemence because if firing incompetents becomes easier, THEY will be out of a job…Incompetence has become a permanant feed-back loop….and… Read more »
Will Bentley
Will Bentley
While a great many Veterans have had problems with Choice, I have used it repeatedly for various ailments here in San Diego without any problems whatsoever. I’m not saying that the VA, or Choice, or TriWest or other regional contractors, or providers, don’t have problems with Choice…only that my own experience with over 20 separate visits to two different providers has been smooth and crisp. My providers have commented, when I asked them specifically, that the paperwork to/from the VA… Read more »
James

Can we asked Why you left the VA for treatment on the outside.

Gary Carriger
I have experienced the Veterans Choice Program first hand. In September of 2015 my primary care doctor determined that I had numbness and tingling of the nerves in both my right and left arms. She submitted a consult to the neurology clinic. After 30 days, October 6, 2015, I received a phone call that Veterans Choice would get me a more timely appointment. I was asked to provide the names of a couple of hand surgeons in the area. In… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran

Gary, please write up a detailed explanation of this and provide it to Rep. Jeff Miller who chairs the House VA committee.
The Government Accountability Office will be investigating the Choice program this spring. Provide those comments to your Congressman and ask that they be included in the GAO investigation.
They need to hear what a massive disaster that program has been.

Tracy Molina
Tracy Molina

Thats terrible I remember the pain before my carpal tunnel surgery. The veterans choice program doesn’t always pay their bills, even ones pre-authorized. I would find a workmens comp clinic, they fo a lot of carpal tunnel cases. That is wear i got my carpal tunnel surgeries 100 percent paid for. Im so tired of the VA and the bs veterans choice program not doing their job.

Arnold Cabral

Tracy Molina if you have something to you believe that Veterans Healthcare need to be improve telled your Congress telled them plus you must know Veterans Friends tell them to do the same….SEMPER FI

Jill Raduziner
Jill Raduziner
VA Choice is a joke! At first I thought it might be a good thing. However, trying to play by the rules and seeking medical care closer to home, I have had two cases of total frustration. Firstly, a $171 medical bill for an office visit on a Sunday, in which case I called Veterans Choice before going. The clinic I went to “doesn’t do business with the VA”! Secondly, a vicious circle of playing the game of setting up… Read more »
Jill Raduziner
Jill Raduziner

September 2015, not September 2016.

91Veteran
91Veteran
I kept detailed notes of every time I called Choice, which is run by HealthNet. After about 3 weeks of getting the same excuse and no appointment, I wrote an email with all those details and emailed my Congressman and Senator. At around day 45 or 50, I was told by Choice I would have to start over because the VA screwed up the consult. I emailed an update to the Congressman and Senator and asked them to inquire. I… Read more »
James

Shut down the VA

Jill
Jill
So finally after several weeks of going round and round with even a visit to my primary VA facility, which BTW is >40 miles from my home (hence VA Choice, right – HAHA), I think I may have resolution on my bills. It only took calling the numbers on the bills numerous times, who told me they still hadn’t received payment. I told them I didn’t want the bills going to collections, so they put the bills on hold and… Read more »
arnieandcaroline13

Jill if you did War Time service called Veterans Affairs their telephone number is 1-800-8271000 if you are Diabled your eligible for Veteran Pension plus if your not their is others benefits you can get do not surrender you serve our Country. …..Ooray….Semper Fi.

91Veteran
91Veteran
Ben had a post here about the VA announcing some new 800 number for providers to call to resolve problems with Choice. The head of the Patient Advocates told me about that number a couple weeks ago because I asked him several questions about the VA paying the bills for my Choice appointment. He very clearly stated the number was for providers to call to resolve billing problems, and it was being implemented to try convince private doctors to start… Read more »
James

VA is hurting veterans

arnieandcaroline13

James my advice to you if you don’t like the The Veterans Choice Card first called try to asked them who passed The Choice Card to be
part of Veterans Medical Centers than voice your belief remember do it in assertive way why you don’t like them….Good Luck. …Semper Fi

Scott
Scott
I had an aggressive prostate cancer which resulted in surgery on August 25th. Thinking that my hospital bill and all other surgeon bills have been paid, I received a surprise in the mail this past Friday. I got a bill from surgeon for his services which are now 6 months old. I am scheduled to for more cancer surgery on April 12th with the same surgeon. Immediately upon receipt of the bill I was embarrassed beyond belief. How can this… Read more »
arnieandcaroline13

Why when I make a comment on to improve Veterans Healthcare nobody answer me back ….I lwill try one more time…..How many Veterans try to called their Congressmen to filed to see if their complaint is true or not that their is part of Congressmen Job.please reply ……Semper Fi.

James
According to Senator Bennett’s office out of Colorado, ” This office can make an inquiry to government agency and that’s all we can do, we can not force a government agency to conduct any investigations or tell them to change anything. So our Senators office is just a catch all for complaints and hold no power to change things. If you don’t believe me call his office and ask for Hale, his Assistant and ask him what their power of… Read more »
Don
Don

I have experienced exactly the same thing with Rep Karen Bass and Rep Maxine waters in California. In addition their staffers have no interest in assisting veterans. In the case of of Karen Bass she voted against oversight of the VA. At one point the office of Rep. Julia Brownley had a staffer who was a veteran and tried to do more. When this returned to school, Rep Brownley office was same as Rep’s Bass and Waters.

Arnold Cabral

Asked your Congressman not your Representative their are not the ones who makes the Laws for Veterans Healthcare even the Senators don’t make the Veteran Medical Center Healthcare Laws…..only Congress does.

Don Avant

James…Hate to tell you this but the House of Representatives IS part of Congress…Just saying…

Arnold Cabral

I am going to the Daily Courier newspaper going to ad in on how to improve Veterans Healthcare. ..Semper Fi.

James

Don’t understand

Don
Don
The VA does not want the Choice Program to work. They want to keep captive within the VA to preserve their jobs, bonuses, etc. In comparison to most VA services, the private sector is far superior and the VA does not want Veterans to experience and compare it. Then there is the issue of medical education. At the VA, you are frequently treated by trainees from local medical schools who pay the VA to train on you. Going into the… Read more »
James

It just could be Bob behind the mask, doing it just for kicks.

KT
KT
Don- I’m going to have to disagree with you on this one. The VA does want the Choice Program to work–believe me–I work for the VA and I deal with the Choice Program and Healthnet–Every. Single. Day. The concept of the program is a great idea; however, the execution is HORRIBLE! The problem is is that no one is fully educated on what everyone’s roles are. There are too many hands in the pot. I am case manager that handles… Read more »
James Stamulis
James Stamulis
Quite frankly that is baloney. They do not want it to work for they lose control over the veterans and that is why that in all the government run health care like medicare, medicaid etc the only people who get no choice for their doctors is us vets. Even my wife gets to choose her doctor because she gets champ V.A. from being my wife yet i continually am denied the choice program even though the V.A.’s own specialist that… Read more »
James

2 months still waiting for choice

James Stamulis
James Stamulis

You are 100% spot on Don.

Johnathan Post

Funny, because it seems to be working. Veterans Choice covered just about every expense from my motorcycle accident last year. I had to pay for the prescriptions.. that was it. Now I’m switching primary care physicians, and within a week I get a call stating the VA couldn’t see me within 30 days, and so I’m being referred to a private physician, will all costs covered.

For a joke, it seems to be working pretty damn well for me.

Arnold Cabral

Johnathan Post did you do War Time if you did you can get Veteran Pension if can’t work at all……..Semper Fi

Robert Whalen
Robert Whalen
The Veterans Choice Program worked expediently for me in regard to dermatological care for skin cancer. The outside provider was 3 miles from my residence, provided excellent care and was prompt on follow-up visits. Major PROBLEM though is that the provider has NOT been paid for any of the procedures or biopsies. It has been 14 months and numerous calls to VA, Tri-West and Veterans Choice. Apparently only the consultation was paid for. This doctor is owed $3,200. When contacted,… Read more »
91Veteran
91Veteran
It does seem to work well for a few veterans in some parts of the country, but is a disaster for most veterans in many parts of the country…just like the VA, I was referred to Choice by the VA, and after 57 days of calling Choice and getting my Congressman involved, Choice finally called to schedule an appointment with the doctor the VA had referred me to. I figure I am one of the lucky ones who used Choice.… Read more »
Brian Carroll
Brian Carroll

Beware my friend Choice sent me to a doctor they made the appt now wont pay the 700.00 bill and i AM IN COLLECTIONS.

CONSIDER THAT WHEN USING CHOICE.

91Veteran
91Veteran
Did you pick the doctor or did Choice? If Choice picked the doctor, then Choice was aware that they had an agreement with that doctor, and as a part of that agreement, they are not allowed to bill the veteran. We all know what reality is like though. You need to find out if that doctor was chosen by Choice, then go to your VA and demand to see the “Choice Champion” at your VA who is supposed to help… Read more »
James
same here Parkview knows I have been in contact with choice, every month and get the same old story. Parkview stated we were getting ready to send it to collections. Since you have kept in touch with us, we are going to drop it back a month. Told me they spoke with the provider caring for me and they also have not been paid. We as veterans should be able to start a law suit against the VA Choice, They… Read more »
Brian Carroll
Brian Carroll
James my suggestion is to call/ write your senator and congressman. Choice is absolutely doing more damage than good to us vets, They are responsible for ruining my perfect credit (50 years ) never been late and always paid my bills . Let them ruin it I refuse to pay the bill choice owes. I will die before i use the choice plan again. sooner or later Washington will have to settle up with all of us and if someone… Read more »
James

I am writing to scott tipton about the billing and how they can turn a veteran away when an outside doctor choice writes them. wanting a veteran to travel 400 miles for a prescription.

Undone
Undone

Received 8.5k in bills this week for approved visits via veterans choice. Pissed off doesn’t begin to describe how I feel. Those procedures were 9 to 10 months ago.

Arnold Cabral
Arnold Cabral

How many Veterans on here to put their beliefs how to improve Veterans Healthcare in their Local Newspaper and in the VFW.DAV, and American Legion Newspaper. ….please respond back. ….Happy Memorial Day.

kbear704
Arnold, I am in the same boat. I have been receiving non stop bills for care the VA choice was supposed to cover. Some of them even went to collections. I’m having to spend time I don’t have calling around to try and get this resolved. Now I’m eligible to use VA Choice again, but they haven’t been able to find a provider that will accept the program. I don’t blame them. I had a c-section in Jan. and I… Read more »
Jill
Jill

Yes, I was dealing with a VA Billing Specialist to resolve a bill that still hasn’t been paid. I finally just paid it.

Undone
Undone

I can’t afford 8.5k for services the VA approved. Not paying them is a flat out tort on their part.

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