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04 NVCAG Recommendations

04 NVCAG Recommendations

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04 NVCAG Recommendations
04 NVCAG Recommendations

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Published by: Canadian_Veterans_Ad on Apr 09, 2012
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Current Status of New Veterans Charter Advisory Group Recommendations as of October 21, 2011
 Attachment #4
Recommendation Has recommendation been implemented? NotesStrengthen family Support Services
1.1 Take Steps to create andmaintain a respectful, family-centredculture in all Veterans Affairs CanadaprogramsPolicies have been
clarified to direct that clients’ family members may be included in counselling and/or
education sessions, in support of a Veteran client’s treatment plan, case plan o
r rehabilitation plan.The Operational Stress Injury Network has standardized family screening, assessment and treatment forfamilies of Veterans receiving treatment at the clinic.The department has developed an expanded outreach strategy that will focus on reaching Veterans, Servingmembers, families and Veterans organizations.The department has worked Veteran to improve access to and awareness of mental health services inNewfoundland by the creation of the Family Community Covenants which will: 1) recruit and strengthenservice provider capacity; 2) improve supports to staff; and 3) build strong working partnerships with theprovince, Non-government organizations and key communities.Spouses and partners are now eligible for the Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation Award.Revised case planning guidelines were implemented in June 2010 and now include the family in theinterviewing process and development of the case plan.Family participation is encouraged at Transition Interviews and during the d
evelopment of the client’s case
plan.Veterans Affairs can provide benefits tofamily members to the extent that they are
beneficial to the Veteran’s treatment plan,
case plan or rehabilitation plan.The department has no legal authority toprovide benefits directly to familymembers.In order to directly provide benefits tofamily members, Veterans Affairs wouldneed to seek an authority change throughParliament.1.2 Fill service gaps to ease thetransition to civilian lifeVeterans Affairs has worked with DND to enhance continuity of care and align programs and policies to ensureCF members, Veterans and their families receive services in an integrated way from the point of injury/illness,through the transition and re-establishment to civilian life.24 Integrated Personnel Support Centres have now stood up on or near Canadian Forces Bases/Wings. Over100 VAC client services staff are now co-
located with DND/CF staff to support member’s recovery,
rehabilitation and reintegration into the military or transition to civilian life.20 case managers have recently been added to areas of highest need, under the Legacy of Care ProgramTransition interviews are now being offered to medically releasing reservists and voluntary releasing reservistswho deployed to a Special Duty area/operationRegional Issues Resolution Officers positions have now been established. These personnel streamline benefitsprocessing for high needs clientsVAC now has a dedicated unit for applications involving serious injuriesVAC has worked closely with DND toaddress gaps in order to ease transition tocivilian life.
- 2 -
Recommendation Has recommendation been implemented? Notes
1.3 Improve access to skilledknowledgeable health care providersVeterans Affairs has made efforts to educate and inform family physicians on Operational Stress Injuries andother mental health issues pertinent to Veterans and their families.Veterans Affairs has increased the number of registered mental health service providers to over 2000.
Veterans Affairs provides support to family physicians in their work with Canadian Forces Veterans.
The World Health Organization mental health education program has now included a model on PTSD.Veterans Affairs has created an information resource for physicians on Dementia.
Veterans Affairs hosted a Webinar series in Newfoundland.
The National Centre for Operational Stress Injuries is working with national psychological and psychiatricbodies to produce training information regarding the needs of Veterans and families.
Veterans Affairs hosts a National symposium every three years on Operational Stress Injuries and trauma.
Progress has not been made in improvingaccess to health professionals in areas of the country where there is a physicianshortage. This is a national issue whosescope extends beyond the mandate of Veterans Affairs.1.4 Provide more support for familymembers caring for VeteransSupport to families through the Veterans Independence Program is already available to Veterans whenrequired because of a service related disability.Training programs for caregivers,additional respite care and acomprehensive caregiver compensationprogram have not been developed.In order to increase benefits to caregivers,Veterans Affairs would need to seek anauthority change through Parliament.1.5 Provide more support forsurvivors and families of the fallen
develop programs tocover the cost of professionalbereavement support services,extend VIP to surviving spouses andfamilies for one year automaticallyand tailor VIP benefits to meet theneeds of surviving spouses andfamilies. (child care)From 2006-2011, the bereavement support program, HOPE, was run through OSSIS but now is part of the DNDJoint Personnel Support Unit program.Pastoral Outreach services are now available for situations where Veterans and their families are dealing withend of life issues, including bereavement.Changes to Veterans IndependenceProgram eligibility and services have notbeen considered for survivors and theirfamilies.The department has no legal authority toapprove Veterans Independence Programto survivors of the fallen.In order to directly provide benefits tofamily members, Veterans Affairs wouldneed to seek an authority change throughParliament.
- 3 -
Recommendation Has recommendation been implemented? NotesEnsure financial security
2.1 End the legacy of insurance basedapproach to economic benefitNote
the recommendationspecifically recommends that theEarnings Loss program be needsbased and that it be de-linked fromSISIP.
Disagree with recommendation
When the New Veterans Charter was implemented in 2006, the Earnings Loss benefit calculation wasdesigned to mirror the SISIP-LTD income replacement benefit calculation in order to ensure consistency andprevent Veterans from being disadvantaged by receiving one benefit over the other.VAC has the authority to supplement programs and benefits through the New Veterans Charter where thereis no entitlement through SISIP-LTD.
The rehabilitation program is needs-based.Veterans who either medically release andapply for the program within 120 days of release or who experience a servicerelated problem that is causing problemswith re-establishment are eligible for theprogram.
A portion of this recommendation is toexpand eligibility for the AccidentalDismemberment Insurance Program toreservists. This is a DND program and does
not fall within VAC’s mandate.
2.2 Ensure disabled Veterans receivea fair, equitable income consistentwith a normal military career
Partially disagree with recommendation
Analysis has been done on this issue, and VAC has determined that raising the Earnings Loss benefit to 100%would not be in line with the principles of modern disability management or the design of otherGovernment-administered earnings replacement programs.Incorporating a career progression factor into an income replacement benefit is not an industry standard.Other than the courts, to date, VAC has not found any other programs that use this type of factor to increasebenefits over time.Recent changes to the New Veterans Charter have resulted in eligible Canadian Forces Veterans from theRegular force, Class C reserves and Class B>180 days receiving a minimum of $40,000 /year Earnings Lossbenefit. Class A and class B < 180 days will receive a minimum of $24,300/year Earnings Loss Benefit.Recent changes to the New VeteransCharter have improved Earnings Lossbenefits.2.3 Increase access to the PermanentImpairment AllowanceChanges have been made under the Enhanced New Veterans Charter Act increase access to PermanentImpairment Allowance2.4 Ensure non-economic loss awardsare comparable to those offered incivil societyThe Department feels that the non-economic loss awards are comparable to those offered in civilian societyPayment options for Disability Awards are now in place. Disability Award recipients can now opt for one lumpsum payment, a series of annual payments or a combination of a lump sum and annual payments.Financial assistance for financial advice remains available.
Veterans Affairs commits to frequentmonitoring of comparable systems toensure that amount payable for non-economic awards remain relevant.

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