April 25, 2014, BREMERTON, Wash. (NNS) – Naval Hospital Bremerton (NHB) and Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System (VAPSHCS) signed a Sharing Agreement April 24, 2014, linking both organizations in providing specific types of medical care to current Veterans Affairs eligible beneficiaries.
Capt. Christopher Quarles, NHB Commanding Officer was joined by Michael J. Murphy, Director of VA Puget Sound Health Care System to affix their official signatures on the document.
“We’re very excited to provide services to eligible veterans in Kitsap County. This is a great way to help those who have gone before us get the medical care they deserve and need. We’re looking forward to this,” said Quarles.
As the mission and operational tempo permits, NHB will provide urgent/emergent and inpatient medical services to the 3,829 current VA eligible beneficiaries enrolled to the Bremerton Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) in the VAPSHCS. Appointment will be made on a space available basis subject to capability and capacity and are expected to commence in June, 2014.
Also in attendance at the Signing Agreement were Nicholas Jay Carr, Constituent Services Representative, Veterans, Active-Duty, Higher Education, Grays Harbor County Office of US Representative Derek Kilmer, Wash. District 06, and Alexandra M. Fastle Kitsap and Olympic Peninsula Director for U.S. Senator Patty Murray.
“It’s our obligation to ensure that veterans have access to quality care in their communities,” said U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer, D-Gig Harbor. “It’s why I have advocated for increased partnerships between the VA and Naval Hospital Bremerton to better serve our local veterans. Today’s announcement is great news for the region and means that local veterans will see the burden of traveling long distances to visit their doctors reduced. It also maintains access to comprehensive care right here in Bremerton. Finally, this shows that when government agencies work together, we can move the ball forward on providing the kind of health care all veterans deserve.”
“On behalf of Sen. Murray, thank you for doing this. This is great for our veterans,” added Fastle.
NHB’s Emergency Department and Urgent Care Center Services for authorized VA beneficiaries will include diagnostic tests and professional services. Emergency Medicine Services at Naval Hospital Bremerton are currently scheduled to transition to Urgent Care Services by Sept. 2014. When that transition occurs, NHB will no longer be able to provide Emergency Medicine Services to any beneficiaries. However, Urgent Care Services will be available for VA beneficiaries in accordance with the agreement.
Inpatient services provided by NHB will include but are not limited to; cardiology, endoscopy, ENT, gastroenterology, gynecology, neurology, ophthalmology, pulmonology, general surgery, orthopedics, and urology.
Laboratory and Pathology services will include anatomical pathology, chemistry, hematology and microbiology to support urgent/emergent and inpatient medical services.
Radiology services will include Nuclear Medicine CT, MRI, US, X-ray and angiography to support urgent/emergent and inpatient medical services.
Blood Product services for inpatients and outpatients will be calculated using direct materials, direct labor and direct production costs.
NHB will also provide in patient pharmacy support. Upon discharge from NHB, the VA beneficiary will be provided an initial discharge prescription of up to a 10-day supply of medication. The support will be commensurate with the NHB standard of care to Department of Defense discharge patients at NHB. If the patient requires refills, the patient will follow-up with his/her Bremerton CBOC Primary Care Manager.
Additionally, veterans who are treated in the NHB Emergency Department/Urgent Care Center after hours or on the weekends may receive a written outpatient prescription but it will not be filled by NHB. Any outpatient prescription(s) services for VAPSHCS beneficiaries will be provided at the Bremerton CBOC or closest VA pharmacy to their home with his/her VA Primary Care Provider.