Top 10 Veterans Stories in Today’s News March 30, 2012

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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.    Senate begins probe of Army’s handling of PTSD casesFearing that the Army may be mishandling the matter, the top senator on the veterans affairs panel said Wednesday that she has begun an investigation into whether military hospitals across the country are denying treatment to service members with post-traumatic stress disorder because of cost considerations.
 
2.    Guardsman, killed saving Afghan girl, hailed as a heroA Rhode Island guardsman who died saving a young Afghan girl is being hailed as a hero by his fellow soldiers and officials back home.
 
3.    Air Force advisers say Afghans making progress in base defenseMany nights at Kandahar Air Field, residents are roused from bed by the high-pitched, rising tone of the indirect-fire alarm. A rocket or mortar is arcing through the air, and it’s time to hit the deck. A small group of Air Force advisers is working to disrupt such attacks, not to mention more spectacular ones.

4.    Veteran founds group to help others who served.  Durham Herald Sun  “I think that the organization as is, right now, the board and volunteers are focused on helping end homelessness among veterans in accordance with the federal mandate to end it by 2015.” In 2009, President Obama and US Department of Veterans Affairs …

5.    College-Bound Vets Face Challenges Beyond Tuition.  WNYC  Since the Post 9/11 GI Bill went into effect in August of 2009, some 700000 student veterans, service members and their beneficiaries have used the bill to pay for college or training institute tuition, according to the Department of Veteran Affairs …

6.    Hiring Our Heroes: Veteran Says He’s At “The Best Point” In a Long Time.  NBC Los Angeles  “I have been taking these classes in anger management,” McCarthon said. Lolita Lopez reports on local businesses that are employing our heroes. For veterans Anthony Timmons and Ronnie McCarthon, finding steady work is a struggle spanning decades.

7.    Women Veterans Conference to meet this weekend.  Statesman Journal  Call the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs at (503) 373-2000 and press 0. Nearly 400 female veterans from thoughout the state will be in town this weekend for the 2012 Oregon Women Veterans Conference. The event, staged every two years, …

8.    Veterans Service Program held at Ross Park Apartments.  Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch
Greg Peterson spoke to a group of about 25 veterans and their spouses about the services that are offered by the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs. By Terri Buller, Staff Writer Greg Peterson of the Brown County Veterans Services Office was on …

9.    DynCorp International Recognized for Commitment to Veteran-Owned Businesses.  MarketWatch  — DynCorp International today announced that it has been recognized for the sixth year in a row as one of the United States’ 10 best corporations for veteran-owned businesses. The list, compiled by the …

10.  Veteran Home Buying 101.  Patch.com  But when it comes to buying real estate in Northern Virginia, you may be surprised to hear that veterans can do better. Most credit unions and Internet lending companies are taking up to 60 days to process Veterans Affairs Home Loans.

 

Have You Heard?

Defense Finance and Accounting Service – DFAS

Beware-scam letter! A letter is making the circuit purporting to be from DFAS asking military member’s fiancées to register in our system entitling them to benefits in the event of the member’s death. All for only a $350 fee. Bottom line, save your money. It’s not true, it’s not a DFAS letter, it’s a scam. Please let your fellow Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and families know the score.  DFAS policy is we will not send unsolicited email messages with attachments.

 

More Veteran News

 

  •  House Subcommittee Approves Bill To Ensure Veterans’ Continued Employment At TSA.  CQ  “Frustrated with re-employment practices for military personnel returning from active duty to jobs at the Transportation Security Administration, a House Veterans’ Affairs subcommittee advanced a bill Wednesday that would ensure veterans continued employment with the agency.” The Economic Opportunity Subcommittee also approved HR 4048, which “would clarify that VA contracting officers may use the Federal Supply Schedules to meet acquisition goals for small businesses owned and controlled by service-disabled veterans.” Lawmakers on the panel “also approved legislation (HR 4051)…that would direct the Veterans Affairs Department secretary to provide off-base transition training to veterans and their spouses.”
  • VA’s Gould Puts Systems Into Service For Vets.  Federal Computer Week  The “IT experts at the Veterans Affairs Department have been working hard to ensure that veterans have fast, reliable access to health care services. Their recent innovations include the Blue Button system, which enables veterans to download their personal health records; Fast Track, which is reducing the backlog of claims related to Agent Orange exposure for Vietnam era veterans; and a VA/Defense Department initiative for creating a shared electronic health record for service members from active duty through veteran status.” W. Scott Gould, who “functions as VA’s chief operating officer, is credited with providing the vision and leadership that made their success possible.” Gould offered details of that success in an interview with Federal Computer Week.
  •  Remote Patient Monitoring Set For Domestic, International Growth. FierceHealthIT “A pair of recently published reports assess the expected financial value of the patient monitoring market both on a national and a global scale. In the US, an iDataResearch report predicts, the patient monitoring market will be worth nearly $4.2 billion by 2018,” while its “worldwide counterpart is expected to grow to $8 billion by 2017, according to GBI Research report.” The “former report’s authors point to increased awareness of the benefits of remote monitoring, as well as big spending by the Department of Veterans Affairs, for domestic growth thus far.”
  •  Contractor Blames VA For Hospital Construction Delays. Federal Times  “When the Veterans Affairs Department broke ground on a $717 million, 1-million-square-foot hospital in Orlando, Fla., in October 2008, it expected to be finished by October 2012. But shifting project requirements, poor communication and a lack of oversight have delayed the project at least a year and driven the cost up $120 million, according to the contractor in charge of the project.” On Tuesday, the contractor offered details on this at a House Veterans Affairs Committee hearing. The Times adds, “VA has consolidated oversight of construction projects under his office and hired additional site engineers to oversee major projects…said” Glenn Haggstrom, executive director of VA’s office of acquisitions, logistics and construction.
  • Details Offered On How Suspect Could Have Left Afghan Base.  New York Times Details that have emerged about how Staff Sergeant Robert Bales could have left the base to embark on the deadly shooting spree he allegedly committed in southern Afghanistan. Both Afghan and US officials are indicating that, unlike most nights, Afghan soldiers and not US troops were guarding the Panjwai outpost. They speculate “that it might have been easier for Sergeant Bales to walk past an Afghan security guard than an American guard.” Sergeant Bales’ civilian lawyer, John Henry Browne, “said the sergeant has limited memories of that night and has suggested that he has” post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
  •   Houston VA Hospital Seeks Iraq, Afghanistan Veterans For PTSD Study. Houston Chronicle  “Armed Sources” blog reports, “Researchers at the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center and Baylor College of Medicine are looking to recruit 40 to 50 Iraq and Afghanistan combat veterans to participate” in a post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) “funded by a grant from the VA Rehabilitation Research and Development Program.” The study “will evaluate how psychotherapy treatment changes neural functioning in veterans with PTSD.” Veterans, who “will be compensated $10 per hour for interviews and $20 per hour” for taking part in the study, “will play computer games while inside a functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging” (fMRI) machine.
  •  Psychiatric Hospital To Begin Construction At Mather Field After Delay.  Sacramento Business Journal  “Construction of a $5 million, free-standing psychiatric hospital with 16 beds is expected to start in May. The Department of Veterans Affairs initially expected to break ground last spring and be done in 14 or 15 months, but the project didn’t get funded, VA spokeswoman Robin Jackson said.” The Business Journal pointed out, however, that the project is “in the 2012-13 federal budget.”
  •   New Counseling Center In Wausau For Veterans.  WAOW-TV  A “new counseling center is available for veterans who are finding the transition to civilian life difficult.” The Wausau Vet Center Outstation is run through the US Department of Veterans Affairs. Organizers, however, “say the counseling services offered there are confidential. Veterans who need to talk are paired with other veterans.”
  • AMVETS Urges Affirmative-Action Status For Vets. Army Times  “A major veterans group wants federal affirmative action laws expanded to include veterans among the classes of Americans that are specifically protected from employment discrimination.” Under AMVETS’ plan, “laws barring discrimination on the basis of gender, religion, race, disability or sexual orientation would be altered to include veterans among the protected classes.” AMVETS “has been pushing the idea in talks with lawmakers and with other veterans groups.”
  • VA Shifts Focus On Female Veterans Research.  Stars And Stripes  “During a stop in Wyoming on Tuesday, Veteran Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki said that his department has improved in caring for the needs of female veterans, but must do more to prepare for the next generation of military women about to leave the service.” Stars And Stripes adds, “VA research focused on women’s health needs has…seen dramatic increases in recent years, with $75 million for 60 separate studies in 2011 alone. In a roundtable with reporters on Tuesday, VA research officials said those efforts will continue to increase in coming years,” with a shift in focus “from general medical investigations to practical accessibility questions.”

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