Veterans Affairs MVP Genome

Holy Batman, the Department of Veterans Affairs “Million Veteran Program” genomic database just eclipsed 500,000 veteran volunteers making it the biggest in the world.

The database, launched in 2011, catalogs the DNA extracted from veterans who have volunteered for the program. Researchers believe the database may help solve mysteries that have eluded researchers in the past in disease prevention and treatment.

When veterans volunteer for the program, they provide researchers secure access to their electronic health records. They also agree to be contacted about future research. Samples of their data are supposedly coded to protect their identity.

Perhaps that explains why your VHA health care records from CPRS are such a mess? Rather than focus on making sense to outside readers, VA has created an extrapolation system engineered to make research easy?

In 2011, I spoke with some of the inside VA contract officers responsible for coordinating deals with government contractors.

They lauded the program that was said to revolutionize medical research.

When I asked if a participant veteran can look at the research or use the system to evaluate the likelihood of a disease or injury being service-connected, they blinked at me blankly.

No one had apparently thought that veterans who are making the research database possible may also want to see how their information is being used.

The contract officers did not have an answer.
But a quick look at the Million Veteran Program (MVP) website explains:

“It will not be possible to give participants results of the blood tests. Due to regulations under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA), we are legally unable to return research results to participants. Results from the blood tests will not be placed in participants’ electronic health record. Participants should discuss any health concerns with their doctor or other health care provider, who can arrange any necessary and appropriate tests.”

Would it kill VA to make data like this available to the veteran in the event that it benefits their disability compensation claim?

How is it that Veterans Benefits Administration is still using antiquated data on TBI and related while they brag about how advanced their research is out of the other side of their mouth?

Source: http://www.providencejournal.com/news/20160821/veterans-journal-million-veteran-program-is-now-largest-genomic-database-in-world

Seymore Klearly
Anyone who listened to the VA and volunteered is a fool. Currently, DNA collection is mandatory in all fifty states for certain felony crimes, mostly sexual assaults and homicides. 47 states also require DNA samples to be taken from all convicted felons. Also, some states have also implemented mandatory DNA testing for juvenile offenders. Some states have even gone so far as to require mandatory DNA testing for all suspects who have been arrested. For example, in California, all suspects… Read more »
91Veteran

Your comment brings a question.

Suppose I knowingly or unknowingly participate in this database. Along comes a Dr. Shinazi type who is looking for a payday with a new pill, and he happens to find I and many other veterans have a genetic predisposition for a disease contracted in service.

How quickly do you think a VA provider would act in convincing you the only treatment available just happens to be a new drug being pushed by someone looking for a payday?

gary owen faas

The DNA can also be used to see if you’re related to any criminal DNA database since it can seek out suspects with related DNA, such as brother ,father, sister, child. When you give your own you expose relatives too. They will have no say if a search is made to see similar genetic profiles.

namnibor
The VA can try to boast all they want but The Human Genome Project is REAL SCIENCE, rather than the junk science the VA is attempting to perform and you cannot tell me that these Veteran profiles will not be utilized to help develop newer BioWeapons for the DoD Industrial Complex. Hell, the VA might even GIVE unsuspecting Vets a little something ‘extra’ while supposedly taking a “genetic sample”, **just** to see how that Veteran fairs with that new BioWeapon…but… Read more »
James
Now many suicides are not actually suicide. But the VA doing testing on new drugs and the dead veterans are the result. Something fishy here to me. 22 veterans commit suicide each day. Then changed to 20 a day. I personally. So not think that the suicide story. Is the real story. ! I think the VA is using the veteran population as Ginny pigs and trial and error on the drug’s they use for mental health problems. That would… Read more »
Crazy elf

I NEVER trusted the VA before. What makes VA think I’ll begin to trust them now!
Like namnibor and Seymore eluded to, how many vets were actually “volunteers”?

Iratevet24601

There was a DoD contract for all of us veterans so…

namnibor
Wouldn’t it be really *swell* in an ideal world if the freaking VA would concentrate on Gulf War Illness, Agent Orange, PTSD, Veteran Suicide Prevention, instead of branching-out and reinventing the wheel? “Reinventing The Wheel”…I say this because as aforementioned, “The Human Genome Project” which started back in 80’s to present day has ALREADY done EXTENSIVE Genetic Probability Mapping and Historical Data that is even utilized in computer online apps and companies that show these markers. Hell, the entire medical… Read more »
redturtle984
Namnibor, The non VA medical profession is governed by a arcane notion that medical ethics play a role in decisions about studies like these. There are huge ethical concerns and therefor constraints about how this data is collected, from whom, informed consent, and a litany of ethical concerns validated by historical reference. Humans have learned that physicians must adhere to a strict ethical standard. The grotesque consequences receal themselves again and again throughout history when we dispense with this idea.… Read more »
91Veteran
You being up a good point…using this database to deny care. What if I submit a claim for service connection, and the VA denies it claiming it is a pre-existing condition based on a genetic predisposition for a certain disease? This is a very real scenario. Some years ago, there was research into Gulf War research, several projects dealing with genetic testing. Early research was showing some Gulf War veterans were showing signs of a genetic predisposition to being affected… Read more »
redturtle984
91Veteran, The likely scenario of denying care is far more insideous and luring for them. Let’s say your genes show a likelihood of a terminal illness which you have yet to contract. When the question comes up, “Can we give this man a life saving transplant?” you know what the answer will be. A lifetime drinker and alcoholic cannot get a transplant until they demonstrate abstinence. The answer to the above question is, “…yes, because the alcoholic has shown abstinence… Read more »
Iratevet24601

Volunteer, volunteerED, volunTOLD (after the fact)

redturtle984
The Nazis were also keenly interested in determining the appropriate human through genetics. They correctly believed that any individual derermined to be genetically “faulty” would be an unnecessary burden on their government system. They believed also that using genetic information would improve the human condition. They also created Protcol Akton T4 Committees which were formed to determine who had a life worth living and who would benefit from relief from that life. Many persons were flagged by this committee. The… Read more »
Ronald Nesler

VA receives tax money to provide safe, dignified health care to military veterans. Providing FREE research to for profit corporations, who SELL health care that veterans can NOT afford, is NOT in VA’s charter. NOTE TO VA: First things first, answer the phones, tell the truth and no alcohol, no cocaine and no marijuana while on duty. Then we can talk about subsidizing your corporate cronies.

91Veteran
How can they use antiquated data while claiming cutting edge research? Easy. Sell access to the research data to whoever is willing to pay for it. Nobody pays for old TBI data. Why not give access to veterans? Well, that would negate any exclusive access to those willing to pay for it. Why give access to veterans when they could potentially find out they have had a serious health problem for years, and the VA missed it in favor of… Read more »
Don

It would be interesting to see if your name/DNA is on the VA’s list of “Volunteers”??

Nate NaRLey

a lot of veterans did not volunteer for this program i didn’t and if i found out there this particular survey that my blood samples where collected i will go to court over this. am not a felon nor did i sign any release documents stating that am a test subject either . veterans i would do the same . ben might have another story

Dina Padilla
Since Kaiser is the military, I just want to add to this that many of the female employees (most of the employees are female and minorities) were given vaccines, even when pregnant. The other is kaiser demanding that I give blood for a test that already had been done by them some years earlier upon filing for an employment ) or get fired. Kaiser stated in that demand letter of having to take the blood test that it was their… Read more »
NiteWish
Newborn DNA screening program in all the States/ District of Columbia/ its territories/Worldwide turn the samples over to 3rd parties unless you sign a form to have the sample destroyed. Held in office buildings are the DNA databank of every person born. Law enforcement can request it. Private companies can buy it. VA is not the only go to place for researchers but when the DoD is involved its concerns are weapons, staying a step ahead of friend-enemy’s & eventually… Read more »
dennis
I went to the MyHealthyVet web site on this and clicked on MVP. Then I clicked on Participation and scrolled to the question: How will the survey completed by participants be stored? It says each sample is given a Certificate of Confidentiality and it also more or less states that the sample cannot be subpoenaed or used by any other agency. Wheter any of that means anything or not I don’t know because we all know how the VA likes… Read more »
namnibor
A “Certificate of Confidentiality” to the VA is about as noteworthy as whatever prize was found in that particular VA employee’s cereal box that morning and just as forgettable. The VA refuses to even follow the Laws and Regulations set-forth for the VA to follow so I hardly foresee the VA honoring any such “Certificate of Confidentiality”. Especially when I have been told in past by VA medical staff that we Vets have NO privacy at the VA. (honestly was… Read more »
namnibor
Yeah…that comment was a ‘bit’ dark, but this entire idea of the VA doing ‘research’ on Veteran’s DNA means each of the top 20 highest bidding Big Pharma companies as well as herbicide companies (DuPont, anyone), will all have their hands on that DNA. In the same sense I would not trust the VA going stem cell research with Vets. Why? Because it seems very logical for the VA to work on what they have problems with rather than a… Read more »
GHerbert2016

It better be purely voluntary…and accurate; which the VA usually has a little trouble with.

James

Or else what.? All they have to say. When asked about it. Under council’s advise. I plead the fifth. !

Work’s every time. !

namnibor

Not to worry at all folks. This genetic soup is just the VA attempting to produce a never-ending-self-replicating meat loaf for their no star cafeterias in VAMC’s.

For this to be successful the VA need only genetically clone *any* AFGE Upper Management and you will have that loafing meat. 🙂 Just make sure not to clone the VA OIG Master Masturbator please! 🙂

Crazy elf
And some of y’all on here, plus almost all others in America, believe the German Nazi’s (medical and scientific experiments) actually lost the war! Not so! How many were brought here? Not all were brought to trial. How many continued experimenting on U.S. citizens? What is occurring after WWII is just a continuation of what occurred during the war! Think about all the chemicals, biological and others being used for war and civilian use! (For example: If y’all aren’t aware,… Read more »
Crazy elf

If y’all think WWII Nazi’s lost the war, think again!

Seymore Klearly
The article that Ben links to his article provides the following quotes from Dr. David Shulkin the Under Secretary for Health Veterans Health Administration. To me it makes it very clear Dr. Shulkin is only concerned with research and not Veterans Health. “We believe MVP will accelerate our understanding of disease detection, progression, prevention and treatment by combining this rich clinical, environmental and genomic data,” said Dr. David Shulkin, VA Undersecretary for Health. “MVP will allow the nation’s top researchers… Read more »
91Veteran
Shulkin is saying nothing more than a sales pitch. Hey Dr. Bigbucks, now do we have a deal for you! For the low, low rate of only 100,000 a year, you can have a license to access this data. Of course access cannot be exclusive, but your findings are completely proprietary and exclusive to you. Included with this great deal is access to the very medical, treatment and exposure records of each of the test subjects, so you will know… Read more »
namnibor

I was just listening to “Rats in a cage” by Smashing Pumpkins while reading your post. Fitting.

namnibor

“Bullet with butterfly wings”- Smashing Pumpkins

Seymore Klearly
Hey 91Veteran, Her is another scary thought about the VA and this Genomic Database. In 2008, by China’s own admission, over 95 per cent of transplants came from executed prisoners. Many of the organs are taken from prisoners of conscience, mainly the persecuted Falun Gong religious minority. This is due to the Falun Gong abstinence of drug or alcohol use and their belief in maintaining a healthy diet. In China when Falun Gong members are arrested a blood sample is… Read more »
Vangie
Hi, haven’t been here in a while as I’ve been taking care of my husband. The VA keeps sending this crap p to our home and I distrust these crooks so much I would never a allow this with my husband. These are the same people that have diagnosed my husband with a genetic predisposition to kidney and colon cancer, with no testing and he would be the first in his family to have ever had this. This is just… Read more »
91Veteran

That’s interesting. If they ask you again, you should say you might be interested in this testing, then ask them how they know he has a genetic predisposition to those diseases.

Seems to me they have already done some testing.

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