November 17, 2015

Sgt. Shaft caricatureDear Sgt Shaft
Is the Department of Veterans doing anything to promote small business opportunities for veterans?

Henry D. via the internet.

Dear Henry
They are doing something in Pittsburgh in collaboration with other federal agencies and partners, will sponsor the 5th annual National Veterans Small Business Engagement (NVSBE), November 17–19, 2015, at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, PA.

This premier event for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses is expected to attract as many as 3,000 attendees, offering the chance to learn from federal and commercial procurement decision makers the most effective ways to compete for and win federal contracts. More than 400 exhibitors and 25 government agencies will also participate in the event. The 2015 theme, ACCESS, is focused on promoting and supporting Veteran-Owned Small Businesses’ access to economic opportunities.

“VA is committed to providing opportunities to Veteran-Owned Small Businesses, and this event is evidence of that commitment,” said VA Secretary Robert A. McDonald. “The NVSBE demonstrates our commitment by offering Veteran business owners the tools they need to thrive in the federal marketplace. We want to do all that we can to help our Veterans be successful.”

NVSBE provides Veteran-Owned Small Businesses and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses opportunities to connect with procurement decision makers, program specialists, and contracting experts from the federal and commercial marketplace. As the largest gathering of Veteran businesses in the country, this event is the ideal platform for Veteran entrepreneurs to make the connections necessary to succeed in today’s contracting environment. In fiscal year 2014, nearly a quarter of VA’s contracts were awarded to Veteran-owned small businesses. According to survey results from last year’s Small Business Engagement event, 96 percent of small businesses reported making valuable connections; 75 percent reported attendance providing the highest return on investment compared with other engagements; and most agreed that the event met or exceeded their expectations.

“One of the greatest challenges for small business owners is to connect with decision makers who can help them grow their businesses,” said Thomas J. Leney, Executive Director of VA’s Small and Veteran Business Programs. “NVSBE provides small businesses a solution to meet that challenge.”

For details about the 5th annual NVSBE, visit www.nvsbe.com.


Shaft Notes
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is stepping up its efforts to accelerate treatment for Veterans with hepatitis C and advanced liver disease (ALD) through the creation of a Hepatitis C–ALD dashboard. The dashboard works by using a set of criteria, including age, gender, geography, service era along with and race and ethnicity, to distinguish Veteran groups at highest risk for ALD as a result of hepatitis C.

“The dashboard is a powerful data tool to help VA identify Veteran groups disproportionately affected by Advanced Liver Disease and to ensure they receive the appropriate health care,” said Dr. David Shulkin, VA’s Under Secretary for Health. “VA will provide data directly to facilities for any of the vulnerable groups identified by the dashboard and support outreach efforts to Veteran populations disparately impacted and not currently served by VA health care. This is an important step in assuring all Veterans with ALD receive timely, appropriate care.”

VA’s Veterans Health Administration’s Office of Health Equity developed the dashboard as part of its efforts to target and accelerate care of Veterans with this serious disease. The new resource promotes equitable diagnosis and treatment of underserved Veterans with hepatitis C and ALD nationally and compliments existing clinical hepatitis and liver disease dashboards available in some Veterans Integrated Service Networks or VISNs.

Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common blood-borne infection in the world. Complications that result from untreated HCV infection include progressive liver damage leading to cirrhosis, primary cancer of the liver, liver failure and death. Although many of these complications are treatable or even preventable, three-quarters of the individuals with HCV infection in the U.S. are unaware they are infected. VA leads the country in hepatitis screening, testing, treatment, research and prevention.

The Hepatitis C-ALD dashboard further advances the vision for quality care and improved access to care identified in VA’s Blueprint for Excellence. For more information on the dashboard, visit: http://www.hsrd.research.va.gov/news/video/heap.cfm.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is stepping up its efforts to accelerate treatment for Veterans with hepatitis C and advanced liver disease (ALD) through the creation of  a Hepatitis C–ALD dashboard. The dashboard works by using a set of criteria, including age, gender, geography, service era along with and race and ethnicity, to distinguish Veteran groups at highest risk for ALD as a result of hepatitis C.

“The dashboard is a powerful data tool to help VA identify Veteran groups disproportionately affected by Advanced Liver Disease and to ensure they receive the appropriate health care,” said Dr. David Shulkin, VA’s Under Secretary for Health. “VA will provide data directly to facilities for any of the vulnerable groups identified by the dashboard and support outreach efforts to Veteran populations disparately impacted and not currently served by VA health care. This is an important step in assuring all Veterans with ALD receive timely, appropriate care.”

Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common blood-borne infection in the world. Complications that result from untreated HCV infection include progressive liver damage leading to cirrhosis, primary cancer of the liver, liver failure and death. Although many of these complications are treatable or even preventable, three-quarters of the individuals with HCV infection in the U.S. are unaware they are infected. VA leads the country in hepatitis screening, testing, treatment, research and prevention.

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