VA launches online patient portal for veterans

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs announced the launch of an online patient portal this month that will provide service veterans with digital access to their patient statements.
By Nathan Eddy
11:04 AM

Users can access their statements through AccessVA, the department’s platform for accessing VA's online services, using their secure information for DS Logon, ID.me or MyHealtheVet Premium.

The online statements will include a summary of services Veterans receive at any VA medical facility.

By using the Veteran Patient Statement selection on the AccessVA homepage, veterans receiving VA care for non-service connected conditions can view, download and print their patient statements, which are available on AccessVA for up to six months.

The VA also noted the department would continue to mail Veterans paper statements.

"VA is committed to leveraging technology to help Veterans access their patient information quickly and conveniently," said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie said in a statement. "We believe these advancements will help Veterans manage their healthcare in more efficient ways."

The announcement follows a series of key changes the VA has made to increase transparency and ensure Veterans have the best information regarding the performance of VA health care facilities.

These include links to comparative tools relating to wait times, quality of medical care and patient experience ratings, which are available via the website home page for each VA hospital.

The VA has embarked on a number of wide-ranging digitalization projects this year, including the launch of VA’s Electronic Health Record Modernization (EHRM), an initiative to migrate Veteran health data to a new system that will link in with the Department of Defense’s patient records.

Another major project was the creation of the National Artificial Intelligence Institute, which will use AI research and development for real-world impact and health care outcomes for Veterans.

The department has also made a major push in the area of telemedicine, expanding telehealth services to the 40 percent of Veterans living in rural areas.

The VA recently opened its latest telehealth pilot site, part of the department's Accessing Telehealth through Local Area Stations, or ATLAS, initiative, which will provide clinical services including primary care, mental health and social work.

Looking ahead to 2020, the VA, Board of Veterans’ Appeals and Office of Information and Technology are working towards nationwide availability of virtual hearings for Veterans next year, allowing access using their mobile phone or laptop through the VA Video Connect app.

Nathan Eddy is a healthcare and technology freelancer based in Berlin.
Email the writer: nathaneddy@gmail.com
Twitter: @dropdeaded209