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VA Northern Indiana Health Care System

 

VA Makes Wait Times Transparent for Veterans

Honor Americas Veterans by providing exceptional health care that improves their health and well-being.

This tool provides Veterans with data they need so they can make informed decisions about their healthcare.

By Department of Veterans Affairs
Thursday, April 13, 2017

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is taking unprecedented steps to increase transparency with the launch of a new Access and Quality Tool that provides Veterans with an easy-to-use, easy-to-understand way of accessing patient wait time and quality of care data. This tool not only provides Veterans with more information about VA services, it increases accountability and ensures VA is held to a higher standard.

“Veterans must have access to information that is clear and understandable to make informed decisions about their health care,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. David J. Shulkin. “No other health-care system in the country releases this type of information on wait times. This allows Veterans to see how VA is performing.”

The tool allows Veterans to access the average times patients are waiting to be seen in their local area; how Veterans describe their experiences scheduling primary- and specialty-care appointments at specific VA facilities; timeliness of appointments for care needed right away; and the quality of health care delivered at VA medical centers compared with local private-sector hospitals. The Access and Quality Tool is the most transparent and easy to understand wait time and quality data website in the health-care industry.

“This tool is another example of VA leading the way,” said Acting Under Secretary for Health Dr. Poonam Alaigh. “No one in the private sector publishes data this way. This tool will instill a spirit of competition and encourage our medical facilities to proactively address access and quality issues while empowering Veterans to make choices according to what works best for them and their families.”

VA will continue to make improvements to this tool based on the feedback it receives from Veterans.

The Access and Quality Tool can be found here.

Watch this video to learn how the tool can be used.

Facts:

The Access and Quality in VA Healthcare tool is the most transparent and easy to understand wait time and quality data website in the health care industry. This tool provides Veterans with data they need so they can make informed decisions about their healthcare.

What is the Access and Quality Tool?

This tool allows Veterans to access the most transparent and easy to understand wait time and quality measures across the health care industry. That means Veterans can quickly and easily compare access and quality measures from their VA facility to other VA’s and make informed choices about where and when they receive their healthcare.

What can Veterans find in the tool?

  • How long patients are waiting to be seen in their VA
  • How Veterans describe their experiences scheduling primary and specialty care
  • Timeliness of appointments for care needed right away
  • Information about the quality of healthcare delivered at every medical center compared to local private sector hospitals.  

Will Veterans be able to use this information to choose their healthcare facility?

Yes. This information informs Veterans about timeliness of care at VA facilities. The tool helps Veterans compare VA facilities to each other on wait times, veteran experiences with access, and other topics.

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