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 Veterans Benefits

  1. Mismanagement alleged at VA appeals board

    A senior attorney at the Board of Veterans Appeals told lawmakers Wednesday that managers at the agency covered up delays in appeals processing and doctored records to protect their performance bonuses.

    • Sep. 10, 2014
  2. VA Secretary Robert McDonald testifies before the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Tuesday on a report about patient care delays at the VA's Phoenix medical center. MANDEL NGAN / AFP/Getty Images

    Investigations still open at 93 VA facilities

    The Veteran Affairs Department's review of the wait times scandal at its Phoenix facility is over, but lawmakers and investigators are promising that department officials will still face intense scrutiny and criticism in coming months.

    • Sep. 9, 2014
  3. U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert McDonald speaks during a news conference at Veterans Affairs Department Monday, Sept. 8 in Washington, DC. Secretary McDonald shared stories of veterans he met across the country. He also outlined his key priorities to better serve veterans. Alex Wong / Getty Images

    McDonald launches 100-day VA reform plan

    SitRep video: Veterans Affairs Secretary Bob McDonald said the recurring complaint he heard during a month-long listening tour across America is that his department's culture is still too closed and unfriendly.

    • Sep. 8, 2014
  4. U.S. soldiers carry a wounded comrade through a swampy area during action in Vietnam in 1969. The Defense Department has agreed to reconsider the bad-paper discharges for thousands of Vietnam-era veterans who may have suffered from combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder but were kicked out of the military in the era before that became a diagnosable condition. National Archives / AFP

    DoD willing to reconsider discharges of Vietnam vets with PTSD

    The Defense Department has agreed to reconsider the bad-paper discharges for thousands of Vietnam-era veterans who may have suffered from combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder but were kicked out of the military in the era before that became a dia

    • Sep. 3, 2014
  5. California lawmakers vote to protect in-state tuition for veterans

    California lawmakers have approved legislation to offer in-state college tuition for veterans who were stationed in California immediately before being discharged.

    • Aug. 30, 2014
  6. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert McDonald speaks during a news conference a the Palo Alto VA Medical Center on Aug. 20 in Palo Alto, Calif. Marcio Jose Sanchez/The Associated Press

    VA wait times have decreased, new data show

    The Department of Veterans Affairs has reduced by half the number of veterans waiting more than three months to see a doctor since a scandal erupted at the agency in spring over delays in health care, according to data released Thursday.

    • Aug. 29, 2014
  7. Veterans Affairs Hospital in Montgomery. Montgomery Advertiser

    Alabama VA employee accused of sexually abusing patient

    A Veterans Affairs Southeast Network employee who works at the Tuskegee VA medical center and was charged with sexual abuse of a veteran patient in February is still receiving a paycheck.

    • Aug. 28, 2014
  8. Concerns arise about opening online exchanges to veterans

    While giving all honorably discharged veterans online exchange shopping privileges would be an added benefit, there are questions within the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments about whether some of the profits should also go back to veterans' progra

    • Aug. 27, 2014
  9. President Obama speaks about veterans issues at the American Legion's 96th National Convention on Aug. 26 at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, N.C. Charles Dharapak / AP

    Obama announces veterans mental health efforts, but most aren't new

    In his speech before the American Legion on Tuesday, President Obama touted new initiatives intended to improve mental health treatment and support for service members and veterans.

    • Aug. 26, 2014
  10. President Obama speaks about veterans issues at the American Legion's 96th National Convention on Aug. 26 at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, N.C.. Charles Dharapak / AP

    Obama to announce VA initiatives today at American Legion convention

    The White House is unveiling a slate of executive actions Tuesday designed to ease troops' transition from military to civilian life and boost veterans medical-care options in the wake of scandals at the Veterans Affairs Department.

    • Aug. 26, 2014
  11. People walk past a homeless veteran in Hollywood, California, in 2012. Data from the Department Housing and Urban Development's annual point-in-time count of homeless Americans showed 8,000 fewer homeless vets since the 2013 count. Frederic J. Brown / AFP via Getty Images

    HUD: Number of homeless veterans continues to drop

    The number of homeless veterans dropped under 50,000 last year, the fourth consecutive year of decreases since White House officials refocused efforts on getting that population into stable housing.

    • Aug. 26, 2014
  12. VA Secretary Bob McDonald visits the Phoenix VA Medical Center on Aug. 9. Department of Veterans Affairs

    No proof deaths caused by delay in VA care, IG says

    Veterans Affairs leaders say they're relieved that investigators have found no evidence of patient deaths connected to serious medical appointment delay problems at the Phoenix VA Health Care System, but said the months-long review still points to numerou

    • Aug. 25, 2014
  13. Consumer Watch: For vets, it pays to shop around for life insurance

    A 75-year-old veteran wrote in to express frustration that rates for Veterans' Group Life Insurance increased in July for those 70 and older, noting that it's hard to find comparable private-sector coverage at that age.

    • Aug. 20, 2014
  14. Report: VA employee took recovering vet to crack house

    Although a Veterans Affairs police officer determined that a Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System employee took a patient to a crack house and helped him buy illegal drugs, the worker is still employed more than a year after the incident.

    • Aug. 18, 2014
  15. Mike Simester stands next to his tractor on his 10-acre farm in Muscatime, Iowa. Gannett

    Veterans look to farming to grow and heal

    Mike Simester had always dreamed of a being a career soldier.

    • Aug. 17, 2014
  16. VA Secretary Bob McDonald visits the Phoenix VA Medical Center on Aug. 9. Veterans Affairs

    VA chief: Firings of workers a deliberate process

    The Veterans Affairs Department is in the process of holding bad employees accountable amid a scandal about long wait times for patients and other problems, VA Secretary Robert McDonald said Thursday, but he declined to say how many people were being fired and who they were.

    • Aug. 14, 2014
  17. More than a hundred employers and community leaders attend the Fort Bragg Veterans Jobs Summit on Tuesday at Fort Bragg, N.C. The two-day summit is held in partnership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundations Hiring Our Heroes program, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Department of Labor, and the U.S. Army. Sara D. Davis/AP Images for U.S. Chamber of Commer

    Vets in workforce ramp up as military gears down

    About 1,200 soldiers were ordered and urged by Fort Bragg brass to prepare Wednesday for their future mission: transition to a civilian job.

    • Aug. 13, 2014
  18. VA Secretary Bob McDonald visits the Phoenix VA Medical Center on Aug. 9. Veterans Affairs

    Vets awaiting primary care at VA can now seek private physician

    Veterans waiting for a primary care appointment at a VA medical facility may now be able to get one at a private physician under a program that allows veterans to seek medical treatment outside the Veterans Affairs Department.

    • Aug. 13, 2014
  19. VA takes big strides in treating military sex trauma victims

    It was in 1990 that 22-year-old Melissa Davis went to the Veterans Affairs Department office in Houston to seek treatment for depression.

    • Aug. 12, 2014
  20. Senate bill calls for research on families of troops exposed to toxins

    More research is needed on the health of the children and grandchildren of troops exposed to environmental pollution and chemicals while they served in the military, several U.S. senators say.

    • Aug. 12, 2014
  21. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald, right, meets with DAV national commander Joseph Johnston on Aug. 9 at the DAV 2014 National Convention in Las Vegas. David Becker / AP

    New VA secretary touts fixes to veterans group

    Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald addressed a veterans group for the first time since taking over the troubled agency last month, calling his plans to fix it 'an opportunity we can't miss nor underestimate.'

    • Aug. 10, 2014
  22. Robert McDonald, testifies before the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee on July 22, 2014 at his confirmation hearing. Win McNamee/Getty Images

    VA will open scheduling books to outside audit

    Veterans Affairs Department officials will open their scheduling books to outside reviewers in an effort to get an independent assessment of how to fix medical center wait time problems, VA Secretary Bob McDonald said Friday.

    • Aug. 8, 2014
  23. Deputy Veterans Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson speaks during a press conference during a visit to a Denver veterans hospital, on Wednesday. Gibson said that the VA's scheduling problems and personnel investigations can be cleared up in two years. Brennan Linsley/The Associated Press

    VA executive: Wait times can be fixed in 2 years

    Long wait times for veterans to get health care can be cleared up in two years, along with investigations of employees accused of falsifying data to hide the problem, Deputy Veterans Affairs Secretary Sloan Gibson said Wednesday.

    • Aug. 6, 2014
  24. Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald testifies before a Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee hearings to examine his nomination to be Secretary of Veterans Affairs on Capitol Hill in Washington on July 22. The Associated Press

    VA Secretary Robert McDonald coming to Phoenix on Friday

    Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald is scheduled to visit Phoenix Friday, his first stop at a VA medical center since being nominated and confirmed to the cabinet post last month.

    • Aug. 6, 2014
  25. Post-9/11 GI Bill turns 5

    Seventy years ago, the original GI Bill provided a bridge to the middle class for veterans returning from war who may have otherwise found limited opportunity in the civilian world.

    • Aug. 4, 2014
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