Wednesday, March 23, 2011

DOD AND VA HEALTH CARE Federal Recovery Coordination Program Continues to Expand but Faces Significant Challenges

Why GAO Did This Study

In 2007, following reports of poor case management for outpatients at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, the Departments of Defense (DOD) and Veterans Affairs (VA) jointly developed the Federal Recovery Coordination Program (FRCP) to coordinate the clinical and nonclinical services needed by severely wounded, ill, and injured servicemembers and veterans. The FRCP, which continues to expand, is administered by VA, and the care coordinators, called Federal Recovery Coordinators (FRC), are VA employees. This report examines

(1) whether servicemembers and veterans who need FRCP services are being identified and enrolled in the program,

(2) staffing challenges confronting the FRCP, and

(3) challenges facing the FRCP in its efforts to coordinate care for enrollees.

GAO reviewed FRCP policies and procedures and conducted over 170 interviews of FRCP officials, FRCs, headquarters officials and staff of DOD and VA case management programs, and staff at medical facilities where FRCs are located.

What GAO Recommends

GAO recommends that VA direct the FRCP Executive Director to establish systematic oversight of enrollment decisions, complete development of a workload assessment tool, document staffing decisions, and develop and document a rationale for FRC placement. GAO received comments from DOD and VA; VA concurred with GAO’s recommendations.

Full Report
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