Accession Number:



VA Health Care: Additional Steps Could Help Improve Community Care Budget Estimates

Descriptive Note:

[Technical Report, Congressional Report]

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In fiscal year 2019, VA obligations for veterans community care accounted for over 17 percent of all obligations for VA health care. In implementing the VA MISSION Act of 2018, VA continues to focus on community care as a way to improve veterans access to health care. When informing Congress of the resources needed for community care, VA must ensure its budget estimates, which are based mostly on actuarial projections, are reliable. The process to develop these estimates is inherently complex, as it requires making assumptions based on imperfect information. GAO was asked to review VAs efforts to develop projections for community care. This report 1 describes VAs actual community care obligations for fiscal years 2018 and 2019 and estimated obligations for fiscal years 2020 through 2022 and 2 examines VAs processes related to its use of actuarial modeling for developing budget estimates for community care, among other objectives. GAO reviewed VA data and documents used to develop estimates for the budget requests for fiscal years 2020 through 2022, the most recent years for which data and documents were available. GAO also interviewed officials from VA and its actuarial consultant responsible for developing estimates.

Subject Categories:

  • Personnel Management and Labor Relations
  • Administration and Management

Distribution Statement:

[A, Approved For Public Release]