Tonight, I decided to order my Official Military Personnel File. I have been out of the Navy for a few years, and I thought it about time to get my records in order. The method to order them is pretty simple. You trot your fingers over to this website, and a few clicks later, Wah-lah! Your record will be on its way!
Now this site is very interesting. It is our National Archives; it is the repository of all important documents of our nation. As a genealogist, I take great pleasure in looking back into history, so I decided to poke around and see what, if anything there was to see.
Strangely enough, I ran across some extremely interesting information about the Department of Veterans Affairs. What I found is that, for years, we taxpayers and vets have been lied to.
On the Archives website, it is laid out very specifically whose records went where after a service member leaves the military. It is also excruciatingly detailed as to specifics regarding things like a well-known fire that destroyed millions of records in 1973, how to get very old records of your ancestors or even Elvis Presley’s military record.
There is also an amazingly detailed description of how, back in the 1990’s, the Department of Defense stopped including health records in the member’s personnel files. The Archives’ statement then goes on:
After this change, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Records Management Center, in St. Louis, MO, became responsible for maintaining active duty health records and managing their whereabouts when on loan within the VA. Call the VA toll free number at 1-800-827-1000 to identify the current location of specific health records and to find out how to obtain releasable documents or information.”
So my friends, I have two big questions for the VA and Congress;
- Where the hell is the almost $1 trillion that have been spent since 2011, to allegedly transfer health records from the DoD to the VA? (By the way, as of a few weeks ago, Congress has now demanded that the VA and the Department of Defense stop spending money to build an interoperable “electronic health record” and just go each build their own…with another $252 billion appropriated for this next wave of dysfunction and abysmal failures without repercussions.
- Why does the VA continue to blame the Department of Defense for delays in receiving veterans’ health records, when they already have them? What is their next excuse as to why they can’t properly rate claims in a timely manner?
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