As we serve the most diverse group of Veterans in history, VA is reaffirming our commitment to hiring staff that reflects that diversity, ensuring that employees feel supported and providing equitable health care access.
On April 1, a newly assembled 120-day task force on inclusion, diversity, equity and access began a systemwide review of VA. It will then design and implement a new strategic mission with defined goals and objectives.
“To ensure a welcoming environment for Veterans, we must foster fair and inclusive VA workplaces where the experiences and perspectives of our diverse employees are valued,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough.
A renewed focus
What does this mean if you’re applying for a job at VA? While we work on developing our new mission, goals and objectives, one thing won’t be changing – our longstanding commitment to hiring a culturally competent workforce.
A 2019 Government Accountability Office report found that Veterans from underserved communities continue to face barriers to accessing health services.
To help bridge that gap in health care disparity, it’s vital that patients from all backgrounds feel represented in their medical providers and confident that their unique health care needs are understood.
With an increased focus on hiring a diverse workforce, we can work to overcome obstacles and ensure that all Veterans are able to receive equitable care.
Our Office of Academic Affiliation (OAA) is playing a major role in developing VA’s diverse workforce.
If you’re just starting out in your career, you can take advantage of health professions training and scholarship programs that are designed to increase job opportunities at VA for racial and ethnic minorities.
OAA manages affiliations with more than 1,800 unique colleges and universities, including nearly 200 minority-serving institutions (MSIs). Approximately 20,000 health professions trainees from MSIs train at VA each year.
The Veterans Healing Veterans Medical Access & Scholarship Program provides full scholarships to 12 Veteran medical students at Teague-Cranston Act and Historically Black Colleges and Universities in exchange for a four-year service obligation at VA.
Fulfilling our mission
Current VA employees know that we are united by a common mission – to serve those who have bravely served their country.
“The success of our mission depends on everyone being able to contribute their expertise, experience, talents, ideas and perspectives. I commit to advancing equity in VA and providing all employees with opportunities to reach their full potential,” McDonough said.
The work of the task force will include review of policies, programming, training and strategic communications for workforce and Veterans’ initiatives.
Going forward, we will continue our dedication to providing quality care to all Veterans regardless of age, race, ethnicity, gender and sexual identity – striving toward the goal of removing barriers to accessing VA health services.
Work at VA
With a career at VA, you’ll be part of an organization that is committed to serving diverse patient populations and supporting diversity and inclusion efforts on the job.