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“Long Term Solution” to Processing VA Educational Payments Off to Much-Improved Start

VA and veterans attending school under the post-9/11 GI Bill are heaving a collective sigh of relief this fall.  VA officials report that the “Long Term Solution” of automating their data integration system has led to tremendously improved results in getting education payments out on time this year.

Last fall marked the first school year to fall under the new GI Bill rules, and it wreaked havoc on VA’s ability to make timely educational reimbursement payments.  Tens of thousands of students did not receive their payments for tuition and housing until late in the fall semester causing significant financial distress.  Last year the claims were calculated manually (using calculators and dry erase boards) and took about 90 minutes per student.  This year, the new data system has cut processing time by half.  VA reports that last year at this time, it had processed less than 12,000 claims whereas this year at the same point, it has already processed 130,000.  As to productivity, last year, VA maxed out at about 2,000 claims a day, but now they can process about 10,000 a day. 

Despite these significant achievements, VA officials have recognized the need for this level of performance to be maintained and plans continued improvements, such as completely automating the system by December.

For more information, see: http://www.federalnewsradio.com/?sid=2046330&nid=35.

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