McDonald: Hiring thousands of new VA clinicians will be difficult | Study finds high skin cancer risk, low awareness among troops | McDonald seeks better online VA tools for veterans
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September 10, 2014
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McDonald: Hiring thousands of new VA clinicians will be difficult
Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald said on Monday that it will be difficult to find and hire the tens of thousands of physicians and other health care professionals needed to reduce VA wait times and improve care. He also said the VA would simplify the department's hierarchical structure, continue removing benchmarks that unintentionally affected data on waiting times and embrace a culture that welcomes constructive dissent. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (9/9)
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Military Health System
Study finds high skin cancer risk, low awareness among troops
A study presented at the recent World Congress on Cancers of the Skin found that military personnel are at higher risk for skin cancer than the general population due in part to deployment locations, but only 22% of service members polled said they were "very aware" of the risk. Moreover, nearly a third of those polled said they have no access to sunscreen, and 62% said they had experienced a sunburn while deployed abroad. Modern Medicine/Dermatology Times (9/9)
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Veterans Health Administration
McDonald seeks better online VA tools for veterans
Veterans should be able to access Department of Veterans Affairs programs through a single website, VA Secretary Robert McDonald said Monday. A team of experts is working on narrowing down the number of VA websites by November, he added. NextGov (9/9)
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Veterans advocates: Obama's mental health measures don't go far enough
President Barack Obama's initiatives to improve mental health care for veterans have come under fire by some advocate groups, who say the measures don't go far enough. Obama's initiatives include awareness campaigns and more funding for brain-chip treatments for PTSD. Government Executive (9/3)
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National Health Care
Lawmakers ask HHS for updates on MSM blood donation policy review
A group of more than 60 lawmakers led by Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., signed a letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell seeking changes to the nation's lifetime deferral policy for blood, organ and tissue donations from men who have had sex with men. The letter asks HHS for a written response about the agency's policy review within 30 days. The Hill/Floor Action Blog (9/8)
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Health and Medical Research
Respiratory virus raises concerns across U.S.
Human enterovirus D68, a virus that causes serious respiratory sickness, has been linked to dozens of pediatric illnesses in the Midwest and may be spreading. Cases have surfaced in at least 12 states, and although enterovirus appears seasonally, D68 is an uncommon strain. There seems to be an unusual spike in incidence this year, coupled with increased severity. In just one month, a Kansas City, Mo., pediatric center handled more than 300 cases of children with respiratory illness, and 15% of the patients were treated with intensive care. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (9/9), The Kansas City Star (Mo.) (9/8), CNN (9/7)
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Other News
Recovering Warrior Task Force Annual Report
The FY2014 Recovering Warrior Task Force Annual Report has been released. This is the final report and concludes their congressionally chartered term. Thank you for your support and input over the last few years! Read the report.
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Check out the latest Military Medicine articles from the online AMSUS Journal library
Lengthening Military Tour Lengths: Cut Costs, Improve Morale, and Improve Patient Outcomes and other journal articles are free to AMSUS members and subscribers who have registered and subscribed to access more than 100 issues of Military Medicine journals online. Subscription rates and membership eligibility are available on the AMSUS website.
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Talent is God-given; be humble. Fame is man-given; be thankful. Conceit is self-given; be careful."
-- John Wooden,
American basketball coach
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