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A 10 minute read
A stethoscope and two dog tags lay on top of a camo military uniform
September 30, 2020

Since 1930, the United States has provided medical services for war veterans at Veterans Administration (VA) hospitals. Veterans that served in active military, naval, or air service with an honorable discharge all qualify for VA services.

Veterans administration (VA) hospitals

With over 7 million veterans seeking care in 2019, VA hospitals prioritize patients that incurred a service-related permanent disability. Other patients seeking care at VA hospitals include: 

  • Former prisoners of war
  • Purple heart recipients
  • Housebound veterans
  • Patients on VA pensions and Medicaid

Most VA hospitals are clustered in the Northeastern region of the United States. This likely correlates to higher population density in that area.

In June 2019, the Veterans Community Care Program MISSION ACT went into effect. This allows veterans to seek care at private hospitals if wait times are over 20 days for primary care or 28 days for specialty care.

Patients may also qualify if it takes them more than 30 minutes to travel to a VA facility or if a service is not provided by the VA. For the 4.7 million veterans living in rural areas across the U.S., reaching VA hospitals can be difficult. Patients may need to travel great distances between their homes and points of care. 

Veterans in rural areas may also encounter limited provider choices and specialty services. Telehealth has become an increasingly popular solution to this challenge. Telehealth allows rural veterans to access their VA hospitals through 4G mobile connectivity. With telehealth providers developing 5G digital health tools, we will likely see telehealth reducing wait times and improving care access for veterans.

Map of U.S. veterans affairs hospitals

 

Fig 1. Interactive illustration of VA hospitals in the United States. Data is from Definitive Healthcare's Hospitals & IDNs database. Data is from CY 2019. Accessed September 2020.

Top 50 VA Hospitals by Number of Staffed Beds

Rank Definitive ID Hospital Name # of Staffed Beds
1. 2267 Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System 716
2. 591 VA Palo Alto Health Care System - Palo Alto Division 715
3. 541840 VA Palo Alto Health Care System - Livermore Division 715
4. 541841 VA Palo Alto Health Care System - Menlo Park Division 715
5. 851198 Southern Oregon VA Rehabilitation Center 600
6. 3127 VA Northeast Ohio Healthcare System - Cleveland VA Medical Center 586
7. 428 VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System - West Los Angeles Medical Center 500
8. 1163 Edward Hines Jr VA Hospital 483
9. 978 Atlanta VA Medical Center 466
10. 3157 Cincinnati VA Medical Center 463
11. 274099 VA Boston Healthcare System - West Roxbury Campus 448
12. 274100 VA Boston Healthcare System - Brockton Campus 448
13. 2900 Bath VA Medical Center 440
14. 819 James A Haley Veterans Hospital 415
15. 1270 VA Illiana Health Care System 401
16. 541822 VA NY Harbor Health Care System - St Albans Campus 386
17. 551521 VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System - HJ Heinz Campus 358
18. 541833 VA St Louis Health Care System - Jefferson Barracks Division 355
19. 2445 VA St Louis Health Care System - John Cochran Division 355
20. 3991 Michael E DeBakey VA Medical Center 349
21. 541828 Tennessee Valley Healthcare System - Alvin C York Campus 347
22. 1022 Carl Vinson VA Medical Center 340
23. 14 James J Peters VA Medical Center 311
24. 2150 Minneapolis VA Health Care System 309
25. 3478 Coatesville VA Medical Center 302
26. 2 Southern Arizona VA Health Care System 295
27. 3915 VA North Texas Health Care System - Dallas VA Medical Center 292
28. 976570 VA North Texas Health Care System - Sam Rayburn Memorial Veterans Center 292
29. 541826 North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System - Lake City VA Medical Center 278
30. 7 North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System - Malcom Randall VA Medical Center 278
31. 1999 Battle Creek VA Medical Center 276
32. 4337 Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center 273
33. 530 VA Loma Linda Healthcare System 270
34. 3854 South Texas Veterans Health Care System - Audie L Murphy VA Hospital 268
35. 539 VA San Diego Healthcare System 256
36. 272 Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System - John L McClellan Memorial Veterans Hospital 256
37. 541834 Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System - Eugene J Towbin Healthcare Center 256
38. 541819 VA New Jersey Health Care System - Lyons Campus 251
39. 541821 VA Hudson Valley Health Care System - Castle Point Campus 250
40. 861 Miami VA Healthcare System - Bruce W Carter VA Medical Center 243
41. 3749 Tennessee Valley Healthcare System - Nashville Campus 238
42. 394 VA Long Beach Healthcare System 237
43. 3416 Portland VA Medical Center - Main Campus 231
44. 541836 South Texas Veterans Health Care System - Kerrville VA Hospital 226
45. 1313 VA Northern Indiana Health Care System - Marion Campus 225
46. 3815 Memphis VA Medical Center 219
47. 3665 Columbia VA Health Care System 216
48. 4 VA Connecticut Healthcare System - West Haven Campus 216
49. 1047 Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center - Augusta VA Medical Center Uptown 214
50. 2273 GV Sonny Montgomery VA Medical Center 210

Fig 2. Data from Definitive Healthcare’s Hospitals & IDNs database. VA hospitals do not report financial data to CMS or commercial entities. Data reflects CY 2019. Accessed September 2020.

Veterans integrated service networks (VISN)

Veterans integrated service networks (VISN) are responsible for day-to-day functions of VA hospitals. They also provide clinical and administrative support for these facilities. The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) oversees VISNs and VA hospital performance.

There are 18 VISN in the United States, with only 2 representing a single state. Like an integrated delivery network (IDN), a VISN is a regional care system. The ultimate goal of a VISN is to meet local care needs and improve population health access.

Learn more

Are you looking for more ways to use healthcare data to improve your sales and marketing efforts? Register for our webinar on Sept. 29 at 2pm EST — The Definitive Approach to Healthcare Sales 101: Codifying the Patient Journey.

In this webinar, two experienced data analysts explain the ins and outs of DRGs, CPTs, HCPCS, and ICD-10s. Patient data influences provider decisions. Understand what the data is and where it comes from, what insights it enables, and how those insights improve business performance. This webinar will cover:

  • The codes, terms, and language combinations that encapsulate patient journeys
  • What’s included in all-payor medical claims
  • Using claims to analyze patient journeys
  • How to apply patient data to differentiate you from your competitors



Originally published July 2, 2019


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alanna Moriarty

Alanna Moriarty is a healthcare industry writer and content strategist. As the Content Marketing Manager for Definitive Healthcare, she most enjoys connecting the dots between data and care delivery. ...


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