No veterans preference for military vets who work as nurses at the VA hospitals.

  1. We need to get a law changed. Title 38 USC 7401 (1) lets VA Hospitals ignore Veterans Preference for health care professionals. If you served as a medic or corpman and want to continue your medical career as a MD, PA , Nurse or NP etc, at the VA hospital, They DONT count your veterans preference. The VA has DISCRETIONARY power to appoint regardless of veteran status. YOU MUST CONTACT congress, the VFW, the DAV and the Legion and both houses of Congress to get this law changed. CONTACT the POTUS also. JOIN me to get this law appealed for fairness in hiring of qualified veterans to work at the VA. Only TOGETHER will our voices be heard.
    Thoughts ?
  2. Visit patrick1rn profile page

    About patrick1rn

    Joined: Feb '06; Posts: 437; Likes: 303
    Family Nurse Practitioner and Author of: My Journey as a Combat Medic: From Desert Storm to Operation Enduring Freedom; from US
    Specialty: Family Nurse Practitioner


  3. by   just_cause
    Very interesting. Great post. Hope to hear more about this-
  4. by   traumaRUs
    Hmmmm. Veterans preference is typically awarded on a point system: 5 points for certain medals, dates of service, 10 points for disabled vets who are service connected.No....they don't have to hire vets but Veterans Preference is a program. It doesn't mean vets get preference.
  5. by   patrick1rn
    Thank you TraumaRUs for sharing what veteran preference is. You are correct, the VA --- a federal agency whos mandate is to take care of veterans does not have to count veterans preference when it comes to hiring of nurses, doctors, NPs or PAs. I should share that this veterans preference applies only towards veterans when they apply to federal jobs. It is hypocritcal that the one agency charged with caring for veterans is the same institution that does not have to enforce this preference to qualified candidates. I suggest you look at VA for Vets traumaRUs
  6. by   ckh23
    Very hypocritical. I have already emailed my reps.
  7. by   caliotter3
    This was one of the policies that turned me off when I first looked toward the VA for employment.
  8. by   elkpark
    Several vets-who-were-nurses commented in conversation with me that the VA in the area used to live in did give vets preference. However, I'm not sure what it is you're asking for. That the VA should be required to hire someone who may be less qualified/experienced/credentialed than a non-vet applicant for healthcare provider positions? The VA shouldn't be allowed to hire the (otherwise) best qualified person for healthcare positions? I'm not sure that's something I consider "fair." I would like to see the best educated and credentialed, most experienced people caring for our vets, regardless of those individuals' military service.
  9. by   caliotter3
    The person who was hired for a healthcare position that I applied for was not a licensed nurse at all. My nursing education made me the better qualified/experienced/credentialed person for the listed job. The fact that I was a veteran, with 'veteran's preference', that did not exist, only made me that much more qualified to take care of fellow veterans. I will never seek employment with the VA again. Nor will I be in any hurry to obtain medical care at one of their facilities.
  10. by   elkpark
    (Cal -- in case I wasn't clear, I was responding to the OP, not to your post specifically.)
  11. by   CaliBoy760
    Caliotter3, I take a slight offense over your post. I am a nurse and a veteran working for the VA who also gets their health care through the VA. However, the vast majority of practitioners and bedside care providers, are NOT veterans. So your insinuation that the VA is staffed with a bunch of under-qualified vets in caregiver positions who got their jobs over more qualified applicants based on their veterans preference is patently false.
  12. by   patrick1rn
    I want to clarify several points:

    1. I am a veteran, a combat veteran and retired from the Reserves and served active duty and I have a 10 point veteran preference.

    2. The statue that I quoted is true. The VA hospital system has discretionary authority in ignoring veterans preference when hiring qualified health care providers such as a nurses ( RNs and Nurse Practitioners) MDs and PAs and some other health care positions. I did not make this up. This does not mean that someone who is not qualified for a position can apply for the job. That is not the reason for veterans preference at all.

    3. I have worked at the VA as a RN and still do part time as a RN, but not as a NP even though I have applied many times to work in positions that I was qualified for. I have worked full time as a NP in primary and urgent care, so I know what I am doing.

    4. In any other federal health care position, veterans preference would apply such as working for the military as a civilian nurse or MD or nurse practitoner. Fed bur of prisons, Dept of state, etc. but the va has " discretionary" authority in hiring.

    5. I have been told by hiring authorities at a VA hospital if two applicants seek a job and both are equally qualified, then the candidate with veterans preference would get the position. I know that this is a lie since I applied for a position and the lesser qualified candidate got the position. I know this person who applied for the same job as I did and she was a brand new NP and I have had several years experience as a NP

    6. This is not a pitty party posting for me to feel sorry for myself.. I know that life sucks and I drive on.. I was a paratrooper medic who served in combat and this isnt anything..

    7. I do want veterans preference to be applied equally when applying for healthcare positions in the federal govt esp the VA and I want this discretionary authority to be changed.. It does not mean that a position will not be filled when non veteran applies for a job at the VA as a MD, NP or PA or RN. I do want veterans preference to apply though..

    8. Sorry Non Veterans, but I served in two wars.. and some other things, Veterans Preference is a benefit for guys like me who served in the military and want to cont to work doing federal service. If your mad that we have veterans preference then I dont know what to tell you.

    9. Veterans Preference does not mean that the least qualified candidate gets the job... In order to even apply for a job as a NP or PA or MD or RN, you have to be certified or about to be certified.. as least for RN s and NPs I know this to be true. They dont just hire anyone..

    10. When I say nurse here I mean RN, not LPNs.. LPNs are entitled to the full veterans preference when applying.

    I just wanted to clarify where I was coming from when I posted the original posting.
    I enjoy the debate and comments and welcome it. Ultimately though I want this discretionary authority that the VA has to be changed legally. I am a realist though, they are going to hire who ever they want to hire and stack the odds against you if they dont want to hire you.
  13. by   PolecatEZ
    Mr Patrick RN, allow me to enlighten you on why this policy is in place and unlikely to change.

    The basics: Most people wrong-headedly believe that the VA, as a whole, exists to aid and support veterans in disbursing their benefits to them and caring for them, etc, etc.

    The grand irony is that this organization exists to do the opposite. They exist due to the political expediency that benefits must be disbursed, but there needs to be an official gate-keeper for this endeavor.

    Which leads to the reason for this policy regarding veteran's preferance. They simply don't want the foxes guarding the henhouse. They want the foxes lined up with hat-in-hand outside the henhouse, and if they give them a few eggs at a time, many will just give up and go away. It saves Uncle Sam money in the red-headed stepchild department of our armed forces, freeing up funding for big shiny useless weapons programs.

    Basically, veterans might be too sympathetic and helpful to their brothers-in-arms, making them a poor choice in general for VA work. They weasel around this principle with the policy you listed above, and in nursing its much less impacted than their other departments, such as GI Bill benefit disbursement (good luck finding a vet there) or home loan approval, for example.

    The VA is ugly business in general, and makes necessary to this day veteran's advocacy groups such as the VFW and Legion. If the VA did not actually have this mission to deny benefits at every opportunity, including hiring preferance, these clubs would have no need to exist.

    Good luck on your mission, god speed.
  14. by   caliotter3
    Quote from CaliBoy760
    Caliotter3, I take a slight offense over your post. I am a nurse and a veteran working for the VA who also gets their health care through the VA. However, the vast majority of practitioners and bedside care providers, are NOT veterans. So your insinuation that the VA is staffed with a bunch of under-qualified vets in caregiver positions who got their jobs over more qualified applicants based on their veterans preference is patently false.
    Reread my post. I am a veteran and I was definitely more qualified for the position for which the less qualified person was hired. Don't misjudge and make statements based upon your own misunderstanding of what was actually said. Patently false? You know the situation I posted about?