Department of Veterans Affairs

Army veteran Robert Galang participated in a clinical trial to manage the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation treatment at the Long Beach, Cal. VA.
Libby Denkmann / American Homefront

An agency pilot program aims to bypass regulations that can make it hard for veterans to get cutting-edge medical treatment.

Veteran John Sherer doesn't drive and relies in part on DAV transport to access medical care.
Sarah Harris / American Homefront

Approximately 5 million veterans live in rural America, and almost sixty percent of them rely on VA healthcare. But accessing that care can be a challenge.

Former Marine Josh Onan talks with George Kevin Flood, a staff psychiatrist at the San Diego VA. Onan is taking advantage of a year-old program that makes VA care available to people with less-than-honorable military discharges.
Katie Schoolov / KPBS

Last year, the VA began offering mental health treatment to vets who don't normally qualify for V-A care. Since then, fewer than 200 people have used the program.

Janine Lutz displays her Memorial Wall, which she built with photos of veterans who killed themselves. She said the VA's policy shunning medical marijuana is leading to needless deaths.
Julio Ochoa / American Homefront

Though medical marijuana is legal in most states, the Department of Veterans Affairs will neither recommend nor prescribe it because of a longstanding federal law.

The Department of Veterans Affairs National Call Center in Canandaigua, N.Y., pictured in this 2013 photo, is one of three operated by the VA.
Department of Veterans Affairs

The VA has opened more call centers and hired hundreds of additional responders after complaints that some callers experienced long hold times or were sent to voicemail.

Participants in Oxnard Family Circle's Adult Day Healthcare program get transportation to and from home on weekdays.
Libby Denkmann / American Homefront

The number of veterans in the VA healthcare system who are 70 or older is expected to grow 30 percent in the next eight years.

Congress mandated the card in 2015, but provided no funding. So the VA struck a deal with Office Depot.

President Donald Trump shakes hands with acting Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie after announcing he will nominate him to lead the department during an event on prison reform in the East Room of the White House, Friday, May 18, 2018.
Evan Vucci / AP

As the Senate considers Robert Wilkie's nomination for VA secretary, veterans groups worry that the agency's leadership gap has slowed its work.

Army veteran Adam John Halvorsen and his girlfriend, Angela Del Castillo, were the first participants in a Safe Parking Program on the West Los Angeles VA campus.
Libby Denkmann / American Homefront

In the first program of its kind in the nation, the West Los Angeles VA has opened its campus to veterans who sleep in their cars. Officials say it's a less-than-ideal starting point to help homeless vets.

Vietnam-era veteran Diane Fike selects vegetables at the Austin, Tex. VA food pantry. Studies have found a growing number of veterans are food insecure, including many who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Carson Frame / American Homefront

More than 1.4 million veterans of all ages rely on government food assistance, but food insecurity is disproportionately common among post 9/11 veterans.

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