Maximilian

Creator


Terminal Lance “Welcome to the VA”

June 21, 2016

You keen observers of Terminal Lancian culture might have noticed that this strip was previously published in the Marine Corps Times newspaper a couple of years ago. However, I felt like today this was an appropriate strip to put up after having dealt with the VA healthcare system myself just earlier today.

I feel like picking on the VA is fairly low-hanging fruit at this point, but this is still a real issue. Here’s the thing, we all know that the hospital staff (nurses and doctors, etc) are not the problem. They are doing their best with the limited resources they have, and quite often do it admirably. The issue is with the layers of bureaucracy that veterans have to go through to even get to see them.

Generally speaking, my experiences with the VA haven’t actually been that bad. When I was living in the bay area, I never had to wait more than a few days for an appointment, and it was like any other doctor’s office I’d ever been to. This morning, having some lingering medical issues, I decided to try my hand at possibly getting looked at by a doctor.

The conversation on the phone went something like this:

“Hello, I would like to see a doctor.”

“Okay, does early or late September work better for you?”

“…It’s June.”

That was basically it. Luckily, and weirdly, I was actually able to just get seen as a walk-in after waiting a couple of hours at the VA itself. Again, when you actually get into it, the staff and doctors are great, but actually getting there is the challenge.

But of course, I’m not saying anything that everyone doesn’t already know.

It would just be great if there was some kind of effort to fix it.