Time to Change VA Enrollments

My appointment at the VA La Jolla medical center is in 68 minutes. Google is telling me with current traffic that it will take 33 minutes. I just want to get enrolled with the local VA system and get a picture taken for my Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC). So, total time burn to accomplish this will be about two hours. Last week, I spent 90 minutes trying to get this done at the Mission Valley VA Clinic. I had not made an appointment (I tried calling but got caught up in auto attendant hell) and the clinic only had one guy doing enrollments. Five guys were in front of me. With each enrollment taking 45 min, the math looked bad and I left. There’s got to be a better way.

And there is. VA Secretary Bob McDonald’s MyVA initiative has five objectives to include “Improving the Veteran experience.” I see in the near future a system where Veterans video conference with a VA enrollment specialist through their home computer. After processing the enrollment paperwork, the ID picture can be taken thru the Veteran’s webcam and sent directly to the VHIC card processing vendor. The whole process should take 30 min max, and in my case, saves me 90 minutes and 44 miles on my car. I know this future system will be developed because Three Wire has explored and is currently architecting such a system using readily available commercial products that conform to the Veteran Administration’s security requirements. And I know there are hundreds of other innovative companies out there that are coming up with similar ideas. So if is not Three Wire, it will be some other company that will come up with unique ideas to address this important objective of the MyVA initiative. Either way, the Veteran wins, and that’s what’s important.

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