Hey, VA got a lot done under really tough conditions in the last several years. That includes dealing with increasing IT workload regarding the GI Bill, more web-based access to benefits, and processing a lot more vets entering the system from current wars and also Vietnam.
That’s a lot more than anyone knows, and it’s a good time to step up to recognize these guys. It’ll be really hard to replace them, to continue the momentum at VA which started in 2009.
Part of that is addressed by the new form of the VA Innovation Initiative, the VA Center for Innovation. The deal has a lot to do with working with employees, vendors, and others for suggestions from folks with boots on the ground.
For example, employee suggestions have led to Disability Benefits Questionnaires, which show real promise addressing a part of the disability backlog. (Disclaimer: in 2009 I helped judge the employee innovation effort as a civilian/nerd.)
Vendor innovations have a lot to do with medical gear that wounded warriors could wear that reports sensor readings via smartphones to VA databases. That could, in turn, be included in Blue Button files which make it way easier for doctors to share current data.
All this is a much bigger deal than I can articulate; the country really does owe a lot to Peter and Roger, and I already see the VA Center for Innovation getting stuff done.
You can read more on Peter, Roger, and the VACI: