WASHINGTON, D.C. Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel toured the Naval Hospital at Camp Lejeune last week to meet with health care providers about a new pilot program there. A joint military-civilian trauma care system kicks off soon at the Naval hospital which will bring some much needed trauma care experience to civilians and veterans in eastern N.C. The facility will become the Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune.”In addition to enhancing trauma training for military medics, this upgrade will also have a major impact for Marines, sailors, military families, veterans and civilians in the area, providing many citizens with more timely and accessible trauma care,” said Tillis.The program is the first of its kind in the nation and will host medical professionals with combat trauma care experience to provide trauma care for service members, veterans and civilians in the area. Doctors say central location of the hospital means patients will receive trauma care more quickly, within the “golden hour” after a major injury, saving lives.Tracking medical records electronically is another way military and veteran hospitals are hoping to improve care. On Monday, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs announced it will adopt the same Electronic Health Record system as the Department of Defense for veterans’ medical records. Electronic data problems have plagued the VA for years. According to VA Secretary David Kulkin, the old system was outdated and this move will speed care for veterans.”This decision will present an opportunity to achieve a stronger partnership between DOD & VA health information systems, moving us one step closer to streamlining the transition period for veterans entering the VA’s medical system and providing VA providers with a full clinical picture of the veteran’s medical history,” said Tillis.The N.C. senator also announced this week that he has hired Ted Lehman as his next chief of staff. Lehman is currently the chief counsel for nominations and senior counsel for the Senate Judiciary Committee under Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).
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