The administration has announced that more veterans will be able to use private facilities since the VA system is overcrowded, but hospitals are concerned it could strain their systems.
Modern Healthcare: Hospitals Brace For Billing, Treatment Challenges Serving Veterans
A new federal policy to refer more veterans for care outside the overwhelmed Veterans Affairs Health System could end up straining some non-VA hospitals with lags in reimbursement and patients who have needs that civilian providers aren't accustomed to treating. Over Memorial Day weekend, the White House and the VA announced that more veterans will be able to use private medical services in order to address long wait times reported in several areas throughout the U.S. In Phoenix, the department's inspector general concluded, in a report issued Wednesday, that 1,700 veterans in need of care were kept off the facility's official wait list and the average wait time was 115 days, although VA guidelines say veterans should get appointments within 14 days of the date they ask to be seen (Dickson, 5/28).