Jan 20 2015


A meeting of the Texas Hill Country Veterans Council was held on January 20, 2015 at the Administrative Conference Room at Kerrville VA. Attending the meeting were:

Vicki Marsh, President
Bill Bacon, First Vice President
Members Bill Cantrell, Emilio Rendon, Gary Noller, Maggie Baker
Paul Gregory, Chief Administrative Officer Kerrville VA
Guests Susan Junker, Cord Switzer, Dennis Birchall, Gary Powers

The meeting was called to order at 0900 by President Marsh.

Vicki Marsh mentioned the Peterson Regional Medical Center (PRMC) as pertains to emergency or urgent care for veterans since KVA no longer has such facilities on a 24 hour basis. Paul Gregory asked that facts and details be obtained from PRMC such as claims denied, etc.

Other issues discussed included the commitment to hire a Doctor for the Green Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT) with the understanding that the deadline for the search is March 2015. As concerns a Neurologist, Audie Murphy is also short. The problem is the disparity between VA salaries and civilian salaries.

A new Dental Hygienist has accepted the position at KVA as has a Speech Pathologist. The boarding process has begun for the hygienist. A Speech Therapist has been identified. An Audiology technician has been identified for a permanent position. An Optometrist is coming on staff in July 2015 and an Optometrist from Audie Murphy’s Data Point Clinic is coming to Kerrville to see patients on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

Drs. Howell and Shomatsu’s replacements are on board in the Geriatric Extended Care Medicine Clinic. An Executive Nurse has been identified but has not made a decision to accept the position. Panels (patient loads) for the PACT’s average 1,163. The new ceiling for the PACT’s is 1400. Paul Gregory was unaware that one PACT had 1308 in December 2014.

Del Rio-area patients have a choice between using VA facilities in San Antonio or Kerrville or using the Choice Card.

A lengthy discussion was held concerning the "Choice" legislation. Every facility has a "Choice Champion" assigned to assist veterans with using the Choice Card. The Choice Champions at KVA are Paul Gregory and Terry Garza . They are also patient advocates.

Taking Notes,

Bill Bacon

Comments to us or the V. A. would be greatly appreciated.