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100-percent disabled retirees and mili- tary widows from having to pay extra for having suffered those conditions doesn’t make the cut.


How Does Your


MTF Rate? Online data assess military treatment facilities (MTFs).


T


he Military Health System (MHS), which includes the TRI- CARE program, is setting the


course to be more open and visible to beneficiaries.


This means military beneficiaries will


have access to more information about how military hospitals and clinics rate on selected measures of:  patient satisfaction and access to care;  health outcomes (information on surgi- cal complications, etcetera);  patient safety; and  quality of care. This initiative stems from a 2014 re- view that concluded beneficiaries lacked information regarding system access, quality, and safety. In response, the FY 2016 Defense Authorization Act directed DoD to keep beneficiaries informed about their health system. The goal is to provide meaningful in- formation for beneficiaries, ensure MHS leaders and staff understand the value and purpose of transparency, and highlight areas that need improvement. MOAA survey results show variation in


care and services has long been an issue in the MHS, and this initial effort is a step in the right direction. Visit www.health.mil/transparency to view the metrics the MHS is using to score the four performance measures listed above.


38 MILITARY OFFICER AUGUST 2016 Relicensure Aid M


for Spouses An amendment to ease costs for spouses falls short.


aintaining consistent employ- ment remains a major challenge for military spouses due to fre-


quent moves and costs associated with pre- paring for employment in a new location. More than 50 percent of military spous-


es require state-unique licensing or certifi- cation for employment in their career field. Spouses relocating to new states often face financial and waiting-time barriers for new licenses or certifications and are forced into jobs for which they are overqualified. Sens. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and Jerry


Moran (R-Kan.) have spent years trying to assist military spouses with licensure and certification costs through the introduc- tion of a tax credit after a military move, but this has never passed. This year, the senators introduced an amendment to the FY 2017 Defense Au- thorization Bill (S. 2943) that would let DoD reimburse up to $500 for spouses’ move-related relicensure or recertifica- tion costs, which would help ease adverse moving effects and get spouses back into the job market as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, the amendment did


not make it to the floor for a vote. MOAA will continue to work to improve military spouse employment.


MO


— Contributors are Col. Steve Strobridge, USAF (Ret), vice president; Cmdr. René Campos, USN (Ret); Col. Mike Barron, USA (Ret); Capt. Kathy Beasley, USN (Ret); Brooke Goldberg; Col. Phil Odom, USAF (Ret); Lt. Col. (select) Aniela Szymanski, USMCR; Jamie Naughton; and Trina Fitzgerald, MOAA’s Government Relations Department. Visit www.moaa.org/email to sign up for legislative-news updates.


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