The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has approved a request from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) to waive a regulation that would normally disincentivize retired healthcare workers from employment at VA medical facilities. This regulation restricts the amount of money that retirees can receive, to reflect the added income from their retirement benefits. By waiving the regulation, they hope to attract medical professionals to come work at VA facilities to address the coronavirus crisis.
The 2019 novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, is a highly infectious disease with symptoms like the seasonal flu, causing a dry cough, fever and breathing difficulties. In extreme cases, the virus can result in pneumonia, causing fluid to build up in the lungs, requiring a respirator to allow the person to keep breathing. It is highly infectious, and medical facilities around the country are already being overwhelmed by coronavirus cases, with them facing shortages of personnel, medication and medical equipment.
The waiver of this regulation is intended to help recruit retired medical workers back into the field at the time when they’re most needed. Before, some retirees might have been reticent to come back to work, due to the reduced salary they would have needed to take. However, by waiving the regulation, the VA hopes to be able to recruit retired doctors, nurses, pharmacists, laboratory technicians, and other retired medical professionals back into service, at least for the duration of the crisis. This will hopefully alleviate some of the strain on the system and save the lives of veterans, particularly disabled veterans, who depend on the VA for care.
The attorneys of Sullivan & Kehoe place a special focus on assisting disabled veterans. Although the courts are closed except for essential proceedings, our veterans’ disability lawyers are still available for remote consultation on your legal issues. Call our office at (800) 395 -7830 to schedule a consultation in our New York City, Garden City, Kings Park, Riverhead, or White Plains office, or visit our contact page.