VA Maryland Health Care System
Annual Physicals: A Win-Win
|Are annual physical exams an unnecessary hassle or a chance to catch health issues before it’s too late? Within the Veterans Health Administration, a complete history and physical examination is a win-win for every Veteran patient enrolled in the VA health care system. Known as vesting exams, a complete history and physical examination by an authorized VA provider will vest Veteran patients in the VA system for three-full years. Funding for VA services is directly tied to the number of Veterans enrolled in and receiving medical care through VA.
This is part of the Veterans Equitable Resource Allocation (VERA) funding model that determines how much of VA’s congressionally appropriated medical care budget is distributed to the various VA networks across the country. The budget for the VA Maryland Health Care System is directly tied to the number of Veterans enrolled in and vested in the system. Veterans who are active in the VA healthcare system, but who do not receive a full history and physical, are not considered vested, and the VA Maryland Health Care System is not fully reimbursed for their health care.
The next time you are contacted about completing a history and physical examination at the VA, consider this:
The rest of the exam includes checking your vital signs and general appearance. How is your memory? Does your skin appear healthy? Can you easily stand and walk? Checking your extremities, heart and lungs.
A complete history and physical exam is an opportunity for you and your provider to pay attention to prevention, screening and your overall health. It’s also a great way to build a relationship with your health care team. And within the VA health care system where funding for medical care is directly tied to how fully engaged Veteran patients are in the system, completing a history and physical exam is another way to help a fellow Veteran and ensure future funding for the VA Maryland Health Care System.
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