New program aims to improve care for Native American veterans

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As part of our ongoing commitment to reducing health care inequities, VA is creating a new umbrella office to manage health care for Native American veterans. We are also expanding a recent program to help Native American veterans in rural areas gain easier access to VA health care.

VA serves the most diverse group of veterans in history, and we are committed to hiring a workforce that reflects that diversity. With this initiative and others, we are working to develop system-wide goals and objectives around diversity, inclusion, equity and access.

Better care for tribal areas

The new Office of Tribal Health will manage health care for all Native American and Alaska Native veterans, from those living in urban areas to those on rural reservations.

We also plan to expand our Rural Indigenous Veterans Health Care Navigation program, which began in 2020, to several new facilities.

This pilot program aims to reduce barriers to health care services in rural areas by matching Native American veterans with peers in their communities – a role similar to that of our existing case managers. These peers will help Veterans access culturally appropriate care.

The positions help veterans continue their individual treatment efforts and set recovery goals. This can take the form of learning and practicing new skills, helping veterans monitor their progress, helping with specific treatments, or modeling strategies based on the specialists’ own experience. All of this is done in order to support these veterans and help them defend themselves.

Go where you need it most

While there are many AV installations in urban areas, rural AV operations, such as those on reserves, are just as valuable, sometimes even more so. Our providers in rural areas can have a huge impact on the health of the whole community and can see the outcome of their care more holistically.

To strengthen staffing at these institutions, our Office of Rural Health has initiated programs such as the Rural Interprofessional Faculty Development Initiative (RIFDI). This program is designed to attract providers and improve clinician job satisfaction and retention. Through RIFDI and related workforce initiatives, approximately 70% of the most rural VA medical centers have added resident physicians.

Benefits for you and yours

While working to care for a cross section of our veteran population, you have access to an excellent range of benefits when you work at VA. Whatever your role, you have access to:

  • Flexible hours. Our employees benefit from 13 to 26 days of paid/personal leave, as well as 13 sick days per year with no limit on accumulation. We also celebrate 11 federal paid holidays each year.
  • Robust insurance options. You can choose from a number of health plans and all of them cover pre-existing conditions. Your spouse, domestic partner and children may also be eligible. Additionally, VA pays up to 75% of health premiums, a benefit that can continue until retirement.
  • Generous retirement packages. VA employees have access to the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). Similar to a 401(k) savings plan, the TSP allows employees to defer tax on a portion of their income each year. The government automatically contributes 1% of your salary, with additional matching contributions up to a total of 5%. For retired military personnel, these benefits are in addition to a full monthly retirement allowance or pension.

Rural living itself offers benefits less common in urban areas: more privacy and personal space, less traffic, a greater sense of community and access to the great outdoors, and lower cost of living. inferior.

Work at VA

As VA strives to better care for Native American veterans nationwide, you have the opportunity to join the team and be part of this mission.

REMARK: The positions listed in this article were open at the time of publication. All currently available positions are listed on USAJobs.gov.

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