The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA), Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) delivered performance improvements made for the fourth quarter of fiscal year (FY) 2019 during a late October live webcast.
The presentation included advances in processing Veteran claims and an overview of VBA’s eight business lines known as programs: Disability Compensation, Appeals, Pension and Fiduciary, Insurance, Education, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment, Home Loan Guaranty and Transition and Economic Development.
“The programs serve 4.9 million Veterans and family members and provided $29 billion in benefits in the last four months of FY 2019,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “VBA will build on the year’s successes in the new #BestYearEvercampaign to further improve service to Veterans.”
Examples of targets met or exceeded for the fourth quarter of FY 2019:
- Compensation completed claims 29 days sooner than its goal of 125.
- Veterans Pension claims completed in an average of 103 days ahead of the 125-day mark.
- Survivor Benefits completed in an average of 91 days, better than the projected 125 days.
- Insurance claims completed in 3.3 days, less than the four-day target.
- Fiduciary performed more than 27,000 field examinations, beyond the target of 21,000.
- Education processed original applications in 23 days, faster than the 28-day target.
- Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment met its promise to hire 169 counselors who have been instrumental with increasing the number of positive outcomes for Veterans seeking employment, education and independent living.
- Home Loan Guaranty provided all funding fee refunds by Sept. 30.
- Transition and Education Development surpassed its 95% customer satisfaction goal.
Two initiatives mentioned will be realized in the coming months. The remaining provisions of the Colmery Act, which will be implemented by Dec.1, provide changes to education programs including aligning the monthly housing allowance to a student’s campus location. Also confirmed are awards for Blue Water Navyclaims set to begin Jan. 1, 2020.
The Oct. 31, VBA webcast and previous webcasts can be viewed at benefits.va.gov/stakeholder.