Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

McCaffery offers MHS view with Blue Star Families panel

Thomas McCaffery (center) participated in the Blue Star Families Panel at American Red Cross National Headquarters Feb. 26. He is seen here with Amy Goyer (left), family and caregiving expert at AARP, and retired Army Lt. Gen. Patty Horoho (right), CEO of OptumServe. The panel discussed timely, quality health care for service members and their families. (Photo by MHS Communications) Thomas McCaffery (center) participated in the Blue Star Families Panel at American Red Cross National Headquarters Feb. 26. He is seen here with Amy Goyer (left), family and caregiving expert at AARP, and retired Army Lt. Gen. Patty Horoho (right), CEO of OptumServe. The panel discussed timely, quality health care for service members and their families. (Photo by MHS Communications)

Recommended Content:

Access to Health Care | Military Health System Transformation | MHS GENESIS

Thomas McCaffery participated in a Blue Star Families panel at American Red Cross National Headquarters Feb. 26. As the assistant secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, McCaffery briefed the audience on how the Military Health System is changing to help military families receive timely, quality health care.

Blue Star Families held the event to discuss results of the annual Military Family Lifestyle Survey, BSF’s yearly “snapshot” of military families. It offers insights to military and national leaders, as well as local communities.

“An organization like this is critical in terms of connecting military families with our fellow citizens,” McCaffery said of BSF’s work on the survey.

Hisako Sonethavilay, director of applied research at BSF, agreed. “We’re really dedicated to ensuring that research like ours is done in a way that we’re able to … really make some change for military families,” she said.

Survey respondents highlighted relocation, employment and sense of community for military families, and resources for children with special needs as particular areas of concern. Suicide and mental health were also important to respondents. About 40% of surveyed military, veteran, National Guard, and Reserve family respondents said they had attempted or seriously considered suicide in the past year. Nearly half of this group did not get professional help, with 48% of them indicating they did not seek help out of fear for their careers or those of loved ones.

McCaffery urges service members and beneficiaries to use the many resources throughout the Department of Defense that target mental health care.

“Seeking mental health care is no different than seeking care for any other serious health condition,” he said. “You need to seek out services. You need to consult other professionals and ask about those services.”

Multimedia efforts like the Real Warriors Campaign encourage service members to seek treatment as a sign of strength. Real Warriors also provides resources for service members to seek treatment. Programs like InTransition ensure treatment continues as service members and their families move between medical facilities.

These tools are readily available for beneficiaries to use. More changes are underway as a part of the MHS transformation to improve readiness and the quality of health care.

The Defense Health Agency began assuming administrative responsibility for all military hospitals in October 2019. Results from the survey show these changes need to happen. Respondents said finding timely, specialty medical care after a relocation can be challenging.

“One of the benefits of consolidating the management of our facilities is a common, standardized experience,” McCaffery said, “so you can know how to get your prescriptions, how to get lab tests, and most importantly how to get those referrals to specialists.”

MHS GENESIS, the military’s official electronic health record, also helps address this need. As families move from location to location, their records will be stored in one location. Easy access to medical records, from point of injury to treatment, should speed the referral process for families.

McCaffery stressed that patient-centered care is a top DHA priority. Results from the Military Family Lifestyle Survey help leadership create processes to improve care across the services.

“We have to do this together,” Sonethavilay said, “We want to help the [DoD] and military leadership advance military family outcomes…and also understand that there is a critical component to making sure that your civilians have an understanding as well.”

“Our patients are our top priority,” McCaffery agreed. “Everything the MHS does works to enhance the patient experience. We’re going to treat the health system not as separate systems, but as one enterprise.”

You also may be interested in...

DoD Directive 6010.04: Healthcare for Uniformed Services Members and Beneficiaries

Policy

This directive reissues DoD Directive (DoDD) 6010.04 (Reference (a)) to update established policy and assigned responsibilities for administering Title 10, United States Code (Reference (b)). It serves as the joint document for administration of healthcare benefits required pursuant to Reference (b), and is issued by the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and Health and Human Services

DCOE Annual Report 2014

Report
7/16/2015

Annual Report for the Defense Center of Excellence - 2014

Recommended Content:

Cognitive Rehabilitation Therapy | Traumatic Brain Injury | Posttraumatic Stress Disorder | Suicide Prevention | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives | Deployment Health

First Call Resolution and Do Not Call Back Policy

Policy

This policy requires first call resolution for all patients requesting appointments at all Air Force medical treatment facilities. Under this policy, beneficiaries will not be asked to call back for an appointment.

First Call Resolution and Expeditious Reply to Patient Policy

Policy

This policy requires first call resolution for all patients requesting appointments at all National Capital Region Medical Directorate medical treatment facilities. Under this policy, beneficiaries will not be asked to call back for an appointment.

First call Resolution and Do Not Call Back Policy

Policy

This Army OTSG/MEDCOM policy identifies responsibilities of MTF commanders, primary care, specialty care and other stakeholders identified in the appointing process to ensure patient satisfaction for our beneficiaries; outlines use of alternative portals such as Army Medicine Secure Messaging, Nurse Advice Line and TRICARE Online; specific procedures are also identified to correctly transfer calls in accordance with existing access to care standards, referral management protocols, and proper use of managing clinic schedules to ensure appointing success the first time one of our patients seeks access.

TBI Awareness: Memorial Box

Video
3/27/2015
Image of a memorial box.

US Army Sgt Fox explains how his memorial box has helped him heal and remember meaningful events and people in his life.

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury

Dr. Heechin Chae on The Mystery of the Brain

Video
3/23/2015
Dr. Heechin Chae on The Mystery of the Brain

Traumatic brain injury expert, Dr. Heechin Chae speaks on the mystery of the brain.

Recommended Content:

Traumatic Brain Injury | Traumatic Brain Injury

Non-Availability of Patient Appointments at Medical Treatment Facilities

Policy

This policy is to be implemented immediately to ensure patients are not told to call back the next day for an appointment.

DoD Instruction 6490.15: Integration of Behavioral Health Personnel (BHP) Services Into Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Primary Care and Other Primary Care Service Settings

Policy

This instruction establishes policy, assigns responsibilities, and prescribes procedures for attainment of inter-Service standards for developing, initiating, and maintaining adult behavioral health services in primary care.

  • Identification #: DoD Instruction 6490.15
  • Date: 11/20/2014
  • Type: Instructions
  • Topics: N/A

Air Force Instruction 44-176: Access to Care Continuum

Policy

This publication implements AFPD 44-1, Medical Operations. It provides guidance and procedures for Access to Care (ATC) operations within the Air Force Medical Service (AFMS). It establishes the roles, responsibilities, definitions and requirements for implementing, sustaining and managing ATC for AFMS Medical Treatment Facilities (MTFs).

Interagency Task Force on Military and Veterans Mental Health

Report
10/24/2014

On August 31, 2012, President Obama signed Executive Order 13625 directing the Departments of Defense (DoD), Veterans Affairs (VA), and Health and Human Services (HHS), in coordination with other federal agencies, to take steps to ensure that Veterans, Service members and their Families receive the mental health and substance use services and support they need.

Recommended Content:

DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Health Care Delivery Subcommittee Update Sustainment and Advancement of Amputee Care Tasking

Presentation
6/3/2014

Presentation to the Defense Health Board: Health Care Delivery Subcommittee Update Sustainment and Advancement of Amputee Care Tasking

Recommended Content:

Quality and Safety of Health Care (for Healthcare Professionals) | Access to Health Care | Extremity Trauma and Amputation Center of Excellence | Warrior Care

Military Health System Prescription Transfer Procedures

Policy

Effective immediately, all Department of Defense (DoD) military treatment facility (MTF) outpatient pharmacies will accept patient requests for prescription transfers from another MTF and from retail pharmacies. When another pharmacy requests prescription transfer information on behalf of a patient, DoD MTF outpatient pharmacies will respond to the inquirer in a timely manner.

Procedures on Responsibility of Dispensing Prescriptions at MTF Pharmacies 14-004

Policy

This memorandum clarifies procedures relating to Health Affairs Policy 04-032, "TRICARE Pharmacy Benefit Program Formulary Management," dated December 22, 2004, which remains in effect. Specifically, this memorandum is addressed to all military treatment facility (MTF) providers and pharmacies. It revalidates the requirement for MTFs to provide medications prescribed by MTF providers and restates procedures for obtaining 3rd tier (Nonformulary) and compounded medications for patients treated at MTFs.

DoDI 6000.14: DoD Patient Bill of Rights and Responsibilities in the Military Health System

Policy

This instruction reissues DoD Instruction (DoDI) 6000.14 (Reference (b)) to establish policy, assign responsibilities, and provide procedures for implementation of the Consumer Bill of Rights and Responsibilities (commonly referred to as the “Patient’s Bill of Rights”) (Reference (c)).

  • Identification #: DoD Instruction Number 6000.14
  • Date: 10/3/2013
  • Type: Instructions
  • Topics: Access to Health Care
<< < ... 16 17 18 19 20  ... > >> 
Showing results 286 - 300 Page 20 of 23

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.