The VA Announces New Initiative to Recruit Medical Professionals

On August 29, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald announced the new Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) initiative to recruit “the best and the brightest” medical professionals to work for the VA. The VA’s hope is that this effort will increase access to quality care for veterans.

The VA’s Medical Professional Recruitment Efforts

The VA has already begun steps to take veterans off of waiting lists and increase access to care. Recruiting a larger medical staff will enable the VA to provide the care that veterans need and deserve.

Some of the efforts the VA will take to accomplish this initiative are listed below.

  • Secretary McDonald will give talks to clinicians and clinicians-in-training.
  • The VA will foster partnerships between local facilities and academic institutions, loan repayment programs, and scholarship programs.
  • They will partner will the Department of Defense (DoD) Health Affairs and all the service branches to recruit recently discharged health care professionals.
  • They will also streamline the credentialing process for VA and DoD healthcare providers.
  • The VA plans to offer VA providers salaries that are competitive with academic and private practice institutions.
  • They will collaborate on a new nursing academic partnership (VA Nursing Academic Partnerships or VANAP) that aims to build mutually beneficial relationships between nursing schools and VA facilities.

In a nutshell, Interim Under Secretary for Health Carolyn M. Clancy explains the foundation of this new recruitment effort: “In order to recruit and retain the highest quality medical professionals, VA needs to be competitive with other healthcare systems, and ultimately that is how we provide the best care to our Veteran patients.”

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