December 2, 2022

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Priority Open Recommendations: Department of Veterans Affairs

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What GAO Found

In May 2021, GAO identified 28 priority recommendations for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Since then, VA has implemented 8 of those recommendations by, among other things, taking actions to publicly report data on COVID-19 in state veterans homes.

In May 2022, GAO identified 2 additional priority recommendations for VA, bringing the total number to 22. These recommendations involve the following areas:

  • veterans’ access to timely health care,
  • veterans community care program,
  • human capital management,
  • appeals reform for disability benefits,
  • quality of care and patient safety,
  • veteran suicide prevention,
  • VA health care system efficiency, 
  • acquisition management, and
  • VA’s capital planning.

VA’s continued attention to these issues could lead to significant improvements in government operations.

Why GAO Did This Study

Priority open recommendations are the GAO recommendations that warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies because their implementation could save large amounts of money; improve congressional and/or executive branch decision-making on major issues; eliminate mismanagement, fraud, and abuse; or ensure that programs comply with laws and funds are legally spent, among other benefits. Since 2015 GAO has sent letters to selected agencies to highlight the importance of implementing such recommendations.

For more information, contact Jessica Farb (202) 512-7114 or farbj@gao.gov.

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