In my post yesterday, as a tribute to our nation’s veterans, I wrote about how Florence Nightingale was history’s first true advocate for the healthcare of soldiers and veterans. Today I want to say thank you to the men and women of the Veterans Health Administration who serve by taking care of those who have served.
In her recent book Wounds of War: How the VA Delivers Health, Healing, and Hope to the Nation’s Veterans Suzanne Gordon wrote that “study after study has shown that the quality of VHA care is equal to or superior to private-sector treatment, and its holistic approach tailored to the particular problems of veterans is not easily reproduced elsewhere.”
Among other things VHA has implemented Walking the Post, also known as WECARE Rounding, as a way for VA medical center leaders “to build relationships, verify consistency of care, gather feedback and follow up on opportunities for improvement. The Veterans Experience Office created a toolkit to make it easy for VA facilities to implement the program.”
Merrill Goozner, Editor Emeritus of Modern Healthcare, wrote about the challenges facing the VA healthcare system in a 2019 editorial, but then concluded: “Yet something entirely unexpected has happened at the VA’s health system in recent years. The number of vets turning to the government-run healthcare system has gone up steadily due to rising demand for its specialized care. Giving them access to private-sector care has not reversed the trend.”
Values Coach has worked with more than a dozen Veterans Health Administration facilities, and I am consistently impressed with the spirit of ownership reflected by the professionals who work in these organizations, most of whom refer to the people they serve as “our Veterans” or “my Veterans,” and not just as “the veterans.” I also have noted how in writing the word most people capitalize “Veteran” when it refers to a specific individual or group – another way of honoring those they serve for their service.
So on this Veterans Day I would also like to give a shout out to the men and women who serve those who have served. Thank you to the 375,000 people who care for our Veterans!
At Values Coach our purpose is transforming people through the power of values and transforming organizations through the power of people. We do that by helping leaders build a stronger Culture of Ownership on a Foundation of Values.