Tag Archives: data

Veterans Benefits Administration Work Load Score Card

Veterans Benefits Administration Score Card

 VA Score Card Cases

As of Saturday, November 3, 2007

The VBA keeps a running Monday morning workload  scorecard which you can download, print or review.   The card reflects data only 2 days old.  Here is what they say about it:

The Monday Morning Reports are a compilation of work load indicators reported by Veterans Benefits Administration field offices. VBA’s Office of Performance Analysis and Integrity is responsible for compiling these spreadsheets. Questions or comments should be e-mailed to VBA’s Office of Field Operations, which is responsible for regional office management.

The Regional Offices are clustered according to organizational groupings called Areas. There are four Areas within the VBA field structure: Eastern, Southern, Central and Western. Reports are in Excel. You may download free viewer software to view the reports.

You can access their site with this link to the VBA Scorecard Index.  It has weekly lists for their workload every Monday from the current week all the way back to 1999!

The Scorecard shows cases pending for every city with a VBA field office in the US.    It also shows how many cases are over 6 months old. 

VA Score Card Cases

For example, on November 3, 2007, there were 404,561 rated cases pending of which 102,267 were older than 6 months (25.3%) and 178,267 non-rating cases of which 51,261 were older than 6 months( 28.8%).  The rated cases pending were about 6,000 more than this time last year.

The chart extends downward for all the field offices a total of 64 lines below those shown here. 

The field office with the biggest backlog was in Houston with more than 19,000 cases and 30.9% backlog.  A few examples of  the worst percentage backlogs ranged from Detroit (38.4% rated, 49.2% non-rated), Jackson Miss (42.2% rated), Houston (30.9/34.8%), LA (30.6/29.0%) just to pick some busy places in each part of the country.

VA Score Card Claims

 The total Compensation and Pension (C&P) cases in the Work in Progress system ( WIPP)  was  647,479 of which 170,355 were over 6 months old.  Other information you may be interested in is

VA Score Card Appeals

All of this data is available on a week-to-week basis for each field office in the country.  It may be useful to look at your field office to see where you stand and how they are doing – otherwise, it is just numbers on their scorecard.

I hope this access link is useful to someone.  Click on any chart to get an update.  It is truly amazing how many veterans are being held up for treatment by this terrible backlog. 

6 Months and Waiting

Give Me a Break,

These are Our Heroes

 

(Score Card?  I give them an F)

 

Oldtimer

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GPD – Grant and Per Diem Program for Homeless Vets

GPD Transitional Housing Program

for Homeless Veterans

The GAO did a study of the Grant and Per Diem Program in 2005 and reported it in late 2006.  The information below came chiefly from that study – a 59 page PDF file.

GPD flowchartThe Grant and Per Diem Program (GPD)–VA’s major transitional housing program for homeless veterans–spent about $67 million in fiscal year 2005. It became VA’s largest program for homeless veterans after fiscal year 2002, when VA began to increase GPD program capacity and phase out national funding for the more costly contracted residential treatment-another of VA’s transitional housing programs. To operate the GPD program at the local level, nonprofit and public agencies compete for grants. The program provides two basic types of grants-capital grants to pay for the buildings that house homeless veterans and per diem grants for the day-to-day operational expenses.

 cup of coffeecup of coffed quote

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                    

Capital grants cover up to 65 percent of housing acquisition, construction, or renovation costs and require that agencies receiving the grants cover the remaining costs through other funding sources. Generally, agencies that have received capital grants are considered for subsequent per diem grants, so that the VA investment can be realized and the buildings can provide operational beds.

Per diem grants support the operations of about 300 GPD providers nationwide. The per diem grants pay a fixed dollar amount for each day an authorized bed is occupied by an eligible veteran up to the maximum number of beds allowed by the grant. Generally under this grant, VA does not pay for empty beds.

VA makes payments after an agency has housed the veteran, on a cost reimbursement basis, and the agency may use the payments to offset operating costs, such as staff salaries and utilities.  By law, the per diem reimbursement cannot exceed a fixed rate, which was $29.31 per person per day in 2006.  Reimbursement may be lower for providers receiving funds for the same purpose from other sources.

On a limited basis, special needs grants are available to cover the additional costs of serving women, frail elderly, terminally ill, or chronically mentally ill veterans. Although the primary focus of the GPD program is housing, grants may also be used for transport or to operate daytime service centers that do not provide overnight accommodations. 

 According to VA, in fiscal year 2005, GPD grants supported about 75 vans that were used to conduct outreach and transport homeless veterans to medical and other appointments. Also, 23 service centers were operating with GPD support.

Barracks Style Bunk BedsMost GPD providers have 50 or fewer beds available for homeless veterans, with the majority of providers having 25 or fewer.  Accommodations vary and may range from rooms in multistory buildings in the inner city to rooms in detached homes in suburban residential neighborhoods. Veterans may sleep in barracks-style bunk beds in a room shared by several other participants or may have their own rooms.

In fiscal year 2005, VA had the capacity to house about 8,000 veterans on any given night. However, over the course of the year, because some veterans completed the program in a matter of months and others left before completion, VA was able to admit about 16,600 veterans into the program. 

Homeless vets per yearOldtimer’s Comments:  The GAO found that the VA’s GPD program was the VA’s largest homeless program beginning in 2005, spending $67 million on 194,000 veterans, a whopping 94 cents a day per homeless veteran – you can’t buy a vet a cup of coffee for that.   It assigned a van to outreach more than 2500 homeless vets per van.   It provided support to 23 service centers with an average of 25  or fewer beds, something like 600 beds total while in actuality much of the money went to vans and administrative costs, so the figure per vet is quite low. 

The curious thing about the chart above, provided by the GAO, is the sudden disconnect between 2003 and 2004.   A sudden loss of 121,000 homeless vets in one year!  The VA says it “improved its counting methods,” now relying on the Continuum of Care program under HUD.   The CoC program is a count of all homeless.  Unfortunately, there is no consistent query relating to veterans in their survey.   There is no consistant directive requiring VA centers to use a particular counting method.  The GAO says that, “in 2005, more than twice as many local VA officials used HUD counts as was the case in 2003.”  That indicates some do and some don’t.   No one knows within tens of thousands how many homeless veterans there are.

Considering The VA has capacity to house 8000 veterans on any given night in 2005, the other 186,000 homeless veterans on those same nights had to fend for themselves.  Considering that 8000 beds times $29.31 per night means the VA should have spent $85 million on the bedded veterans over a year’s time, but could not as they only had $67 million to spend, much of which went to the vans and overhead.  Obviously there were considerable empty beds during the year due to underfunding or inefficient turnover in available beds.

More on this report later.

Oldtimer

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