Top 10 Veterans Stories in Today’s News – October 21, 2011


Veterans! Here’s your Top 10 News stories of the day compiled from the latest sources


We encourage you to browse our list so that you can take what you want and keep what you need


1.    Veterans’ Mental Healthcare Quality Varies by Region.  Medscape  — The mental health care provided by the US Department of Veterans Affairs for veterans is as good as or better than that reported by the private, Medicare, or Medicaid systems. But US veterans with mental health or substance-use …
2.    PHL govt appealing claims of Filipino war veterans.  GMANews.TV  Aquino said a few months ago, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario met with United States Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki to ask for a more liberal system in processing the claims of Filipino veterans. …
3.    Agencies available Friday at National Guard Armory.  Jackson Sun  In an effort to better serve military veterans, the Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs has been hosting programs across the state offering education and assistance. A Veterans Outreach Program will be held from 10 am to 2 pm Friday at the …
4.    County Dedicates New Veterans Affairs Office.  Council Chairman Jack Whelan (right at podium) welcomed World War II veteran Jack Fetterolf (left at podium) to the dedication on Oct. 18 of the Veterans Affairs office in the Delaware County Government Center lobby. …
5.    U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Awards Contract for Nationwide Deployment.  PR Newswire   — The Sanford Guide, recognized as the essential reference for infectious disease treatment, announced that the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Veterans Health Administration has deployed the Sanford Guide Web …
6.    Mobile Vet Center works to help homeless veterans.  Southeast Missourian  Exact figures are hard to measure, Bowlby said, but the US Department of Veterans Affairs estimates about one-third of the adult homeless population are veterans. The department says the nation’s homeless veterans are predominately male and the …
7.    Former American POWs return to Japan to visit site of internmentTime doesn’t heal all wounds. If it did, 88-year-old Harry Corre wouldn’t be in Japan right now.
8.    Heading for Asia, Panetta is urged to solve Japan basing dispute.  Move quickly to solve the smoldering dispute over air bases on Okinawa, Virginia Sen. Jim Webb urged Defense Secretary Leon Panetta ahead of his first visit to Asia as secretary.
9.    White House honors veterans charities.  The White House on Thursday honored the founders of three veterans charities with the Citizens Medal, recognizing their “exemplary deeds of service for their country.
10.   Vets Mobilize Against Defense Cuts.  Washington Post “The nation’s largest veterans groups, angry that lawmakers usually friendly to defense are open to cuts in military spending, are mobilizing their memberships to pressure Congress to preserve veterans’ benefits. The American Legion, which has 2.4 million members, sent a letter Wednesday to all members of Congress, warning against cuts that it says would gut the US military and compromise the well-being of veterans.” The “letter follows a ‘call to action’ issued Tuesday by the Veterans of Foreign Wars to its 2 million members, which raised an alarm about recommendations made to the Joint Special Committee on Deficit Reduction.”


More Veteran News


  •   Bill Would Boost Access To VA Loan Program For Surviving Military Spouses.  Huffington Post  Chris Birk, director of communications for the Veterans Affairs Mortgage Center, notes, “Thousands of surviving spouses currently ineligible for VA home loan benefits would gain access to the program if a US House bill passed Wednesday becomes law. The VA Loan Guaranty program has helped more than 18 million service members become homeowners since 1944.” Birk adds, “A tighter lending climate has made the VA loan program increasingly popular.”
  • Private Hospitals To Gain Access To Vets’ Medical Records.  AOL Government The “Department of Veterans Affairs has reached the final stretch of what’s been a long effort to employ technology that allows private hospitals access to veterans’ medical records that can be used to evaluate health history and deliver better care.” Work on the Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record (VLER) pilot projects is part of VA’s attempt to “overhaul its image and provide the best care for America’s veterans and protect the security of their records.” In an interview with AOL Government, VA Chief Information Officer Roger Baker “said his agency expects to go nationwide with VLER in 2012.” VA Secretary Eric Shinseki “also commented on the new technology, saying it will enhance VA’s “ability to continue providing veterans with high quality health care.”
  •  VA Observes Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  US Navy Seals  “October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and as an entity that serves a number of female citizens, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is fully participating in the observance by encouraging female Veterans to proactively confer with their respective health care providers regarding breast cancer screenings.” In a news release, VA Secretary Eric Shinseki said his agency “has an outstanding breast screening program.” Shinseki urged “all women Veterans to talk to their providers during Breast Cancer Awareness Month about receiving the appropriate screening.”
  •  Care For Mental Health Patients Drove VA Costs.  Washington Post  “Checkpoint Washington” blog reports, “With troops returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan, the cost of medical care for veterans is expected to skyrocket in coming years. A study released Wednesday” by RAND Corp. and the Altarum Institute “suggests that a huge chunk of those costs could be devoted to treating the invisible wounds of war.” What the study “found was telling: the Department of Veterans Affairs spent nearly three times as much on services for vets with mental illness or substance abuse than on those without such conditions.”
  •   Unprepared For Wave Of Severely Wounded, Bureaucracy Still Catching Up.  Huffington Post  “Over a decade of war, the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs have been scrambling to catch up with the care that the severely wounded need, and with some notable exceptions and scandals, they have largely succeeded.” But the “huge bureaucracies” at both agencies “still pose significant problems for the severely wounded.” David Wood, writer of the “Beyond The Battlefield” series, said he spoke to Robert Petzel, VA’s undersecretary for health, about such problems. Wood said Petzel “told me that whatever problems veterans have encountered with VA medical care are in the past.” Wood also noted care improvements made by both VA and the US military.
  • New Combat Vet PTSD Support Group In La Pine.  KTVZ-TV  “Local veterans and the Central Oregon Vet Center offer a new” post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) “support group for war zone veterans in La Pine.” The “group meets every Tuesday from 10:00 until 11:30am at the conference room of the County Services Building (51340 Hwy 97).”
  •  Veterans Protest Outside Of VA Hospital.  WANE-TV  On Tuesday afternoon, veterans protested outside the Veterans Affairs hospital in Fort Wayne. The protesting “vets said they have to travel to Indianapolis and Chicago for special medical services that the Fort Wayne facility doesn’t provide. They said this is happening because the Fort Wayne VA doesn’t have voucher funds for them to see private healthcare providers in the area.” In a statement responding to the protest, the VA Northern Indiana Healthcare System said, “VA purchases medical care or services from community providers for eligible Veterans when the care needed is not available within its network of VA Medical Centers, clinics or medical care facilities shared with other agencies.”
  • Vietnam Vets Execute First Phase Of “Operation Stand Down.”  Clarksville (TN) Leaf Chronicle   “Middle Tennessee homeless veterans” will be able to attend “Operation Stand Down early next month.” The event will be held in Nashville “on Nov. 3-5.” Doctors “and dentists from Vanderbilt University, the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and other agencies will give physicals and provide needed care” at the event.
  •  VA Seeks To End Homelessness Among Vets.  Warner Robins (GA) Patriot   “The Department of Veterans Affairs is launching outreach initiatives in 28 cities to end homelessness among veterans by 2015. The outreach sessions – including one in Atlanta on Oct. 29 – will highlight local services for homeless vets, their families and for veterans at risk of becoming homeless.” In a news release, VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki said, “Those who have served this nation as veterans should never find themselves on the streets living without care and without hope.”
  • Homeless Shelter For Veterans Could Be Opened By Spring.  Lisbon (OH) Morning Journal, “If all goes according to plan, by this spring, homeless veterans in Lorain County will have a place to sleep for up to two years until they can get a job and permanent home. Daniel Gillotti, chairman of the by-laws committee of the local Valor Home, updated county commissioners at their meeting” this week, saying Valor Home Lorain County will “be looking for veterans that just need a boost to become self supporting.” Money for the project “comes as part of federal grants announced last year” by US Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki.
  •    Women Veterans To Be Honored In Oct. 29 Event.  Muskogee (OK) Phoenix  “The Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs will host the 27th annual Oklahoma Women Veterans Recognition Day on Oct. 29 at the Embassy Suites Hotel…in Oklahoma City. The event is a joint venture for the state and federal VA departments and is one of the largest women veterans outreach programs in Oklahoma, according to a media release.” Speakers at the event include “Dr. Patricia Hayes, chief consultant for the Women Veterans Health Strategic Health Care Group at the Department of Veterans Affairs.”
  •   Haitian Amputees Inspire US Service Members.  Washington Post  On Monday and Tuesday, cheers “erupted on the sidelines of a practice field outside RFK Stadium as Sandy Jean Louis Louiseme, the youngest member of a Haitian soccer team composed entirely of amputees, dribbled toward the goal. Amputee soccer has rhythms, and risks, all its own, which became clear when Louiseme collided with the goalie” of the US National Amputee Soccer Team. Louiseme’s “squad, Team Zaryen, scrimmaged with the US national team Tuesday as part of a five-day ‘Haitian Inspiration Tour,’ in which the amputees, victims of last year’s earthquake, held clinics in amputee soccer for US service members who have lost legs while stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq.”
  •   VA Employee Coaching Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team.  CBS Evening News  “Dave Van Sleet has spent 32 years working” at Veterans Affairs “hospitals fitting prosthetic limbs on wounded soldiers.” Now, he is leading a team of wounded Iraq and Afghanistan veterans on a national tour of exhibition softball games against “able-bodied teams.” The team’s “message is reflected” in its “motto– life without a limb is limitless.”
  •   Pr. George’s Community Center, Services Brochure In Works For Seniors, Veterans.  Washington Post


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