A cost saving change in how refunds are processed and applied to Veterans by the Department of Veterans Affairs based upon many discriminating economic factors, would save the U.S Government & Department of Veterans Affairs hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more. The problem is that refunds are processed to veterans under a dollar amount that does not make it cost effective or efficient for the VA to process and ends up costing the Department of Veterans Affairs significantly more to process a refund than to apply the refund to the patients account in the form of a credit (the cost saving idea). For example an $8.00 prescription refund is processed to a veteran because the prescription is found to be service connected. The refund process includes the research done by the Accounting Technicians, Utilization Review Nurses, doubled checked by other Accounting Technicians in the department and finally sent to Austin for processing. Who knows the time, man-hours, paper and other resources it takes the Austin process to make an $8.00 refund to a veteran. My idea is that a financial study needs to be done to find the breaking point where the cost of refunding the veteran does not exceed the dollar amount of the refund, if the cost to refund exceeds the dollar amount of the refund; the refund is instead applied to the veterans/patients account for future health care cost. Again, for example, if a veteran is due an $8.00, refund the man-hours spent researching the refund, the materials and resources utilized to process the refund add up to significantly more than the refund amount and could instead (the cost saving idea) be applied to the veterans/patients account for future health care related cost. This idea would take an $8.00 refund that cost the government $200.00 (a very conservative estimate) to process and instead would apply that wasted revenue back to the Department of Veterans Affairs for health care cost.
Idea No. 11510