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The Department of Veterans Affairs is now seeking contractors to create a replacement website for all its different websites – vets.gov, myhealth.va.gov, ebenefits.va.gov, etc – under one umbrella.

Recently, VA paid Ad Hoc LLC around $40 million to create and maintain its new vets.gov website that is somewhat of a replicate of the previous ebenefits.va.gov website. Ad Hoc is the same firm that supposedly fixed the Healthcare.gov debacle.

Now, the agency is trying to consolidate its redundant websites under one big website. The goal is to create a one-stop shop for all veteran services by spending [insert mystery amount?] of taxpayer dollars.

Why?

“What we hear consistently from veterans is ‘I’m confused and I don’t understand why the VA doesn’t act like one organization,’” Marcy Jacobs told Nextgov in a June conversation. “[We’re] really trying to change the conversation with the veteran and make it easier for them to interact with the VA.”

RELATED: How Much Was Vets.gov?

Jacobs is the head of Digital Services at VA. She led the revamping of online applications, connecting of websites, etc, over the past few years.

SEE IT: Modernization Solicitation

The new overhaul is part of the VA Digital Modernization Strategy. This is an agencywide attempt to spend more taxpayer dollars to streamline online services in a way that should already have been accomplished. The project is slated to run 12 months with an optional 12-month extension.

I did not have a chance to track down how much the project is projected to cost, so if you happen to find the dollar amount, please report back here.

Source: https://www.nextgov.com/it-modernization/2018/07/va-rethinking-its-entire-online-presence/150177/

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19 Comments

  1. And in another development VA leadership is once again asking congress to streamline the allocation of funds for VA. VA proposes that C-130 transport planes with pallets of “funding” be airdropped over VA facilities on a regular basis instead of the cumbersome method of voting on good ideas and spending just what is needed.

    Air drops could be scheduled weekly or daily as the agency determined necessary with an option for up to three flights per day. Pilots even now are being recruited from the finest islamic nations ever to populate small islands and atolls. VA ensures Congress that all air lifted bales of cash will be used to provide the finest care there is at VA for our veterans.

    Now… back to you Ben.

    • This new idea to spend 40 Million Dollars to re=organize things reminds me of the “reorganization” plans I viewed while stationed at HQMC/Pentagon…..Stirring the shit in the toilet bowl but never pushing the flush lever. All bullshit by bureaucrats paid to stir shit but never achieve results……………………..

  2. This is no different than purchasing shitty toilet paper in order to save $$$ but then having to using 3x the amount to achieve a half-wiped asshole….much like the VA and it’s purchase orders of websites by the assholes working there.

    “Let’s produce a super sheet of toilet paper to finally wipe that ass in one swipe!”–(only to later require a much BETTER asswipe to fix what the previous asswipes could not)

    Morale of post: The VA and toilet paper have as much in common as multiple shitty websites of which none can communicate with each other so yet another website is produced…much the way VA does all medical procedures…forgetting the patient on other side of scalpel or end-users of scatterbrained websites.

  3. How about us Vets that are hurting from improper medical care, and the intentional infliction of emotional distress?

    Most corruption in VA is at the Medical Center level. Each VA Medical Center basically has its own inside rules besides VA Policies. Which VA very loosely follow.

    New website? Right, can’t wait to see how well this doesn’t go.

  4. Excuse my negativity and sarcasm, it’s that I’m just so excited how well the VA treats Veterans, and how well the machine is greased in favor of VA AFGE employees and management. Frigging traitors.

  5. According to an interview with Scott Blackburn in May 2018 on Government Matters website, “https://govmatters.tv/top-it-priorities-for-next-va-secretary-cio/”, the estimated cost for EHR transition alone would be around $4Billion. From what I can gather from the GMsite, the White House has embarked on a thorough revamping of the digital systems throughout the government offices.

    ~~~ There are interesting Q&A topics in this link from March 2018 with Marcy Jacobs, some with links that could benefit in individual “vet.gov” issues. At that time, she was also interested in feedback regarding IT improvements.
    “https://www.rallypoint.com/command-post/marcy-jacobs-from-the-va-here-for-a-live-q-a-march-21st-at-3pm-et-what-questions-do-you-have-about-the-va-s-digital-experience”
    “*** THIS Q&A HAS ENDED ***

    Marcy Jacobs is here to talk about the about the digital experience of the VA.

    She is the Executive Director of the Digital Service at VA. She leads a team of engineers, designers, and product specialists focusing on helping VA solve their most complex Veteran-facing technical challenges. She is currently focused on Veteran facing tools (Vets.gov, education tools, claims process, appeal status, simplifying digital landscape to make finding information more clear/simple).”

    • This interview “https://govmatters.tv/congress-facing-upcoming-deadline-for-big-spending-bill/” from July 2018, discusses the $1.6Billion still needed to implement VA healthcare projects against the time-crunch of the House on vacation and FY-19 looming.

      • Ok, Rosie,
        Whether it’s “$4 billion” or “$1.6 billion”. It’s still a lot of Taxpayers Funds going into some people’s pockets!
        I wonder how the VA and AFGE in Washington DC will split it up?

    • @ Elf,
      I get it, trust me! I know! It’s a never ending spending spree!
      From what I gather, the White House is revamping the entire U.S. Digital Systems infrastrusture that has lagged behind in upgrading, and the VA is part of that process.
      I wanted to pass along information I dug up, from the commentaries of two people directly involved in planning where the project would be headed, as of a couple of months ago.

      The first link has a video interview with “Scott Blackburn, former acting CIO at the Department of Veterans Affairs, discusses what VA initiatives should be prioritized and what might happen with the VA’s electronic health records contract….”, discussing about half way in, the $4Billion allotment and the breakdown of why and what needs upgrading.

      The link with Marcy Jacobs has some interesting info in the Q&A discussion, granted, not everyone will find it relevant in their situation.

      The July link, has a video interview with “Leo Shane III, deputy editor of Military Times, and David Hawkings, senior editor of CQ Roll Call, discuss the congressional issues keeping a FY19 funding bill from advancing, and the first day on the job for new VA Secretary Robert Wilkie….”, discussing the additional $1.6Billion still wanted to see the project through at this point. Keep in mind, VISTA itself hasn’t had software/security updates for several years.

  6. No amount of money, mergers, changes in websites, combining, or anything else will change the fact we at times are dealing with liars, sociopaths, narcissist, psychopaths, Sadist, well trained pathological/habitual liars, activist/militants, loyal VA “teammates,” contractors, a failed socialist styled medical system, screwing around with our files-pharmacy for fun, covering up for scum-bags and deleting information that can be used to prove how they may have treated people horribly for whatever reasoning they have. To withhold, delete, change or scrub want they want. Same with civilian care when covering up for VA issues or civvy hospitals and clinics being not legally bound to even release files on multiple request.

    So the problems and causes are wide-spread throughout the nation’s health care institutions. Problems too many to count in health care civvy or VA and none ‘at the top’ (DC, Congress, Senate, House, med boards, IT companies, contractors, all the ‘professionals’, LEOs, the insane) give a damn. All they want is $$$$, total control, to see suffering, death and loving it. System crashes, malfunctions, crystal ball algorithms, Kiosk malfunctions, file sharing, being “lost” in some system, “third party” or more file and info sharing or exposed/leaked records, hacking, human errors by accident or intentional. Games over “identity politics” to retaliation. On it goes. Hear Charlie Brown’s teachers voice yet from the VA and lost totally corrupt gubbermint and health care institutions? Wah wah, wah wah wah whit wah.

    Anybody think this is all a joke? Not reality? Want just a little proof of it all? Then offer up some aid to get me my needed simple two months or so of files from Union Hospital, their staff, their city council family members, the activist, who really run health care… politics, $, greed, controls, retaliation in concert and for life. Or ask why civvy care lied about a broken jaw in their own files and refused X-rays to prove that and more. Wanna see totalitarian, fascist, Democrat-Socialism in action? IN a so-called “red state?” Supported by all and both parties involved? Ha. Then we are the ones on the terrorist list and attacked by local governments, lefties, and beyond? I can show you in a day how fucked up, censored, and corrupt things actually are in this country and locally.

    Have a great day but we don’t live in America any longer.

    Not just for the criminal justice system that is also killing us off or forcing us to suffer. The VA and stupid was on pain meds too, among other issues.
    “https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2018/07/31/the-unitd-states-is-the-largest-prison-camp-in-the-world/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=the_united_states_is_the_largest_prison_camp_in_the_world&utm_term=2018-08-01”

  7. If the online commercial website Nextgov is to be believed, “The Veterans Affairs Department is looking for a team of developers to consolidate its far-flung agency websites into a single, user-friendly online portal. The vendor would lead a complete redesign of the agency’s primary website, VA.gov, which would include building a new content management system within the VA Enterprise Cloud and migrating content from existing sites to the new platform, according to the request for information” (“https://www.nextgov.com/it-modernization/2018/07/va-rethinking-its-entire-online-presence/150177/”).

    According to the VA, “VA requires Contractor support to design, develop, and maintain various aspects of the VA Application Programming Interface (API) Development and Operations, including but not limited to platform design, API development and maintenance, developer documentation, and product management best practices to work with teams internal and external to VA, using modern software development methods and tools. VA is taking an API-first strategy to deliver the high quality digital experiences our users expect. A single set of APIs will power every VA digital service, and these same APIs will be exposed to approved third parties to build products and applications on top of VA services and data. These APIs across every vertical of VA’s business will enable VA users to receive a consistent, high quality experience across all VA communication channels (e.g., digital, phone, mail, in-person, etc.)” (“https://www.fbo.gov/index?s=opportunity&mode=form&id=3def2b67b242dd02616f67f454179c2e&tab=core&_cview=1”).

    The contract proposal, posted July 30, 2018 (solicitation number: 36C10B18Q2732), further states, “It is anticipated that this acquisition will be conducted under the simplified Acquisition Procedures (SAP) in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 13.5. Accordingly, this effort cannot exceed $7M.”

  8. Oh fine. Mess it up. It is under one umbrella now if you have prime eBenefits and start from the benefits side. You can then go to health care and check appointments, order RX etc.

    They always mess things up when they work on it. Lose documents etc. But the Benefits side doesn’t let you download your online work. I can’t get a copy of the claim I submitted.

  9. Vets.gov has my very much alive husband down as deceased and subsequently closed a pending appeal. It’s been over a month of attempts to have it fixed and it’s still there. No one appears to have a clue how it got there or how to remove it. So excuse me if I appear to be somewhat critical of their IT folks or whatever plans they have to address their technical inadequacies,

  10. VA is a fucking joke. None, and I mean NONE, of their IT specialist computer shit works for veterans! They don’t
    Back when a VHA hack tried to get me to use “MyHealthEvet dot whatever its called”! It wouldn’t let me on it! Afterwards, my wife found out everyone was having a hard time getting on it. Millions of taxpayers monies down the drain.

    Now, this new “asshole in charge” is trying to get more fucking money to fuck up another computer shit for veterans! Will it work? That I doubt very seriously!

    #fuckva
    #fuckafge
    #ftw

  11. “A Vietnam Vet Killed An Intruder Who Tried To Strangle His Grandson, Then Police Shot Him”
    Joshua Gill | Daily Caller News Foundation | 12:41 AM 08/02/2018


    A war veteran shot a naked intruder who tried to strangle and drown his grandson in the bathtub
    911 calls described the veteran and his stepson as white men and the naked intruder as a black man
    Police arrived on the scene and shot the veteran when they found him armed in his own home

    Colorado police shot and killed a decorated Vietnam War veteran in his home after he killed a naked intruder who tried to strangle his grandson.

    Richard Black, 73, awoke Monday to find that a naked intruder had broken through his door and was trying to strangle his 11-year-old grandson. Black and his stepson attempted to wrest the man off of the boy but, after failing to separate them, Black retrieved his 9mm handgun and shot the man twice in the chest. Aurora police, responding to several 911 calls, then arrived on the scene and reportedly shot and killed Black in his own home. (RELATED: Bodycam Footage Of LAPD Hostage Shooting Released)

    “Mr. Black did everything right. His actions saved his grandson’s life. He should be in the mayor’s office getting a commendation for his heroism. Instead he’s in the morgue,” said attorney Siddhartha H. Rathod, according to The Associated Press.

    Black’s wife, Jeanette, had called the police during the altercation and described the intruder to authorities as a black man and her husband and son as white men, so as to avoid confusion.

    Police described the incident from their perspective and said that officers responded to a 911 call saying that an intruder was breaking into the house. They arrived to a “very chaotic and violent scene” and upon entering the house “encountered an armed male.” They shot first and asked questions later, determining afterward that the armed male was the homeowner.

    Police subsequently found the grandson in the bathroom with severe injuries along with the body of the intruder. The boy is expected to make a full recovery.

    Rathod said the intruder, who has not yet been identified, was partying at another house before he ran across a five lane road, entered Black’s house, attempted to choke the grandson and then carried the boy into the bathroom where he tried to drown him in the bathtub. Black and his stepson wrestled with the man, broke a vase over his head and even jabbed his eyes, but nothing fazed him. That’s when Black shot him.

    Police Chief Nick Metz expressed frustration over not being able to release more details concerning the incident, including 911 calls and body camera footage, but also gave his condolences to the Black family.”

    Full Article At: “http://dailycaller.com/2018/08/01/vietnam-vet-naked-intruder-shot/”

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