Old 12-08-2014, 09:37 PM #1 (permalink)
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Default VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Got an interesting letter from the VA today saying they had been notified of my husband's death. It went on to say if the notice of death was erroneous, and the veteran is NOT deceased, he should contact them directly! We have also received two calls since his death, wanting to schedule appointments! I have very little to say bad about the VA, as they were wonderful to him- But for crying out loud, he died in a VA hospital! You'd think their computers would pick up on this! Nuff said! Just frustrating to deal with this kind of stuff!
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Old 12-08-2014, 11:27 PM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

There are two VA's. The Veterans Administration and the Veterans Administration Medical System. One is on Mars... the other is here. It's sad you had to receive that letter.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:44 AM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Good grief! That must have been quite a shocker. So sorry they added to your sadness.
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Old 12-09-2014, 05:48 AM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Donna, I am so sorry you got a.letter like that. After my sister passed away, her insurance company sent her a quality of care survey. Hugs to you Donna and know the insurance morons are everywhere. Steph
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Old 12-09-2014, 06:48 AM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

So sorry. It hurts worst when the grief is fresh. But it may keep happening. several years after my dad died he got a letter supposedly from his pcp ( but really from office) saying he need to book a colonoscopy
He was 1 dead 2 if he had been alive he would have been over the age for a colonoscopy 3 he had had surgery before ever becoming this doctor's patient and had no colon to be scoped!
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Old 12-09-2014, 09:57 AM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

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So sorry. It hurts worst when the grief is fresh. But it may keep happening. several years after my dad died he got a letter supposedly from his pcp ( but really from office) saying he need to book a colonoscopy
He was 1 dead 2 if he had been alive he would have been over the age for a colonoscopy 3 he had had surgery before ever becoming this doctor's patient and had no colon to be scoped!
Now that's funny!


The VA computers don't easily communicate with each other for a variety of reasons. I straightened out the VA in the cases of my dad and my wife, but some businesses are still trying to communicate with them both from time to time.

In fact, I discovered another thing. At my bank, it seems it always took two tellers to do even the simplest task. I discovered that my accounts are noted as "Death Alert," requiring a supervisory oversight because she was still on the account in one of their databases. So a supervisor was required for every transaction!
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Old 12-09-2014, 10:33 AM #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Thanks for sharing your stories, Stephanie, Mike and Nikki. Guess we do need to laugh over some of the stupidity!
Did speak to the VA this morning- this was a standard form letter- and they know it is not the best wording! Maybe we need to get a job with some of these places and teach them how to deal with death issues! Guess we qualify for that as well as experts on ALS!
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Old 12-09-2014, 12:01 PM #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

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Maybe we need to get a job with some of these places and teach them how to deal with death issues! Guess we qualify for that as well as experts on ALS!

I actually did work at the VA during the time my wife had ALS. Whenever I tried to improve their systems, my supervisors got really mad. Stupidity is rewarded by the system, so it's amazing anybody gets anything right over there.

Try not to take it personally. Inefficiency happens. In fact, it took over five months to "kill" my dad in the VA healthcare computers. And I worked there!
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Old 12-09-2014, 01:05 PM #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

So going by Mikes reply the answer seems to be - you should just laugh.

I remember the call I got a few months after Chris passed. The short version is that it was someone from a section of our bank, following up on a letter he had sent (which I would have tossed in the bin) offering Chris life insurance. I informed him Chris had died and he said - oh I'll take him off my list then, and he wished me a nice day...

yeah right

The world is full of bafflement
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Old 12-09-2014, 01:27 PM #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Mike, hope you have no guilt over the 5 months it took to "kill" your dad in the system! Thanks, Tillie! I AM laughing now. ( but I still hate stupidity and inefficiency!). Thanks everyone for always adding something to brighten a day!
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Old 12-09-2014, 03:16 PM #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

It's the way the Veterans Administration (not the medical staff) was when I began dealing with them in 1985, the way they are today... and the way it will always be. It's a bureaucratic monster with well entrenched bureaucrats who can't be fired, reprimands in their files are meaningless and nor will affect their retirement packages. I was told it has also become a government dumping ground to meet hiring requirements (some Action thing) filled with people who are not really qualified to do the job they have been given. Key word... given.

It is... what it is.
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Old 12-09-2014, 04:24 PM #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Let's not forget the other fact here. There's three ways to do things. 1. The right way 2. The wrong way and 3. The government way. If there's any way the government can screw things up, it will.
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Old 12-09-2014, 11:30 PM #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Have decided each day's mail will have "unwelcome" surprises! Today's mail contained an advertisement from a monument company encouraging me to get a "permanent expression of love and remembrance ". The topper was the full size picture of a grave stone with our family name on it, and then my husbands name engraved on it and MINE as well. Is that tacky or is that tacky! Must be obituaries bring out people who prey on others' grief. I am amazed that they considered that a good sales technique! On my to do list for tomorrow will be to write to this company and politely tell them their advertisement sucks!
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Old 12-09-2014, 11:38 PM #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Definitely write and tell them!

TIP - don't change your fb status to widowed .... boy does that start the trolls rolling!
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Old 12-09-2014, 11:42 PM #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: VA computers- should I laugh or cry!

Good advice, Tillie. A recently widowed friend also told me NOT to remove hubby's name from bank accounts for a year, in case any checks came in his name! Don't imagine there are too many "check fairies" out there waiting to give us money, but you never know!
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