As of May 31, 2014 our membership was 60,748.
The goal for life membership has been met. Keep working.
Commander Guy Diffenbaugh’s Message
Greetings and accolades to you for all you do for Veterans and DAV. I have had a very
enjoyable year as your Commander and it has been possible because of your service and
In my travels this month, visiting chapters, I have witnessed solid growth, commitment, and the
spirit that makes us the best veterans service organization. I am pleased to report that we have
made significant organizational gains in all areas. Remember, however our growth comes
through our collective effort to recruit and provide service work. We also must remain forever
vigilant in facing our adversaries that all to quickly forget about the commitment our Nation
made to us.
With regard to the current issues in the VA, DAV has taken the position of wait and see what the
results of the Office of Inspector General investigation yield before going for the throat of the
hand that feeds us.
Plan to be with us at Department Convention, in Lake Mary, 27-28 June, for fellowship and to
elect/support your new Department Officers. Thank you for your service and support of
DAV DEPARTMENT CONVENTION
June 26 – 28, 2014
The Disabled American Veterans, Department of Florida Convention will be held from June 26-28, 2014 and
the Lake Mary Marriott in Lake Mary, Florida. National Sr. Vice Commander Ron Hope will be the National
Representative. The room rate is $75 per night. The officers for 2014-15 will be elected.
Hotel reservations can be made by calling the Lake Mary Marriott at (407) 995-1100.
Reservations must be made by May 14, 2014 or you will pay the regular commercial rate.
Look forward to seeing you there.
Also be reminded that Chapter Annual Financial Reports are due by September 30 each year.
Chapter Officers Reports are due within 10 days after installation each year or when changes are made.
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As of May 31, 2014
TOTAL ASSETS $1,227,878
TOTAL LIABILITIES $127,713
TOTAL LIABILITIES and FUND BALANCES $1,227,878
Bay Pines VAVS $1,050
Gainesville VAVS 0
Tampa VAVS $0
Lake City VAVS $2351
WPB VAVS $0
Orlando VAVS $2800
Eglin CBOC $0
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BOOKS: VERY FEW CHAPTERS ARE TAKING ADVANTANGE OF THE LEE GREENWOOD GIFT BOOK "GOD BLESS THE USA".
WHAT AN EASY WAY FOR YOUR CHAPTER TO MAKE MONEY.
YOU MUST HAVE BOOKS ON HAND AT YOUR CHAPTER, AND USE THEM EVERY TIME YOU HAVE A FUNCTION AT YOUR CHAPTER OR COMMUNITY.
THE BOOKS WILL SELL IF YOU PRESENT. BOOKS COST YOUR CHAPTER $1.50 AND CAN EASILY BE SOLD FOR $5.00.
100 BOOKS SOLD WILL NEW YOUR CHAPTER $350.00. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO GET APPROVAL FROM THE DEPARTMENT OR PAY 10%.
PLEASE CALL OR EMAIL ME AT firstname.lastname@example.org, or 352-250-4743. I ALSO HAVE ABOUT 600 OF HIS BIOGRAPHY, SAME DEAL.
THE MEMBERSHIP DRIVE CONTINUES, EVEN IF YOU HAVE MET YOUR QUOTA. OUR MEMBERS ARE PASSING DAILY, SO
WE MUST CONTINUE TO REPLACE THEM. TELL A POTENTIAL MEMBER THAT BECAUSE OF THEIR SACRIFICE THEY HAVE EARNED THE RIGHT
TO JOIN THE DAV. IF YOU ARE ELIGIBLE TO JOIN YOU DESERVE TO BELONG. REMEMBER THE 3 WAYS YOU CAN SIGN UP A MEMBER.
OUR MEMBERS ARE ALL LIFE MEMBERS, SO THE EASIEST WAY TO JOIN IS TO PAY THE FULL MEMBERSHIP WITH THE CONVENIENCE OF
YOUR CREDIT CARD AND NEVER PAY ANOTHER PREMIUM. THE SECOND WAY IS PAY $40.OO NOW AND THE BALANCE TO BE PAID
QUARTERLY OVER A THREE YEAR PERIOD UNTIL THE FULL PREMIUM IS PAID. THE THRID METHOD IS GO TO THE DAV WEBSITE AND
MAKE A $10.OO REOCCURANT PAYMENT ON YOUR CREDIT CARD UNTIL IT IS PAID. LETS MAKE FLORIDA THE NUMBER ONE STATE IN THE
NATION. THE POTENTIAL IS HERE, SNOWBIRDS WILL BE COMING DOWN IN GROVES AFTER THE HARSH WINTER THEY HAVE HAD.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS OPPORTUNITY TO PROMOTE MEMBERSHIP. CSO'S CAN EARN GIFT CERTIFICATES TO THE OUTBACK STEAK HOUSE. DO NOT BE LEFT BEHIND. IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS EMAIL
ME AT email@example.com or CALL 352-250-4743. The following chapters have not made goal:
1, 5, 6, 30, 38, 63, 67, 70, 126, 129, 133.
MESSAGE FROM THE ACTING SECRETARY
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has come a long way under the leadership of
Secretary Eric K. Shinseki. Today and for decades to come, Veterans will benefit from
the transformation begun in the past 5 years, driven by Secretary Shinseki’s unyielding
devotion to Veterans and unflagging commitment to bringing VA into the 21st century.
In my time here at VA, I have come to understand and appreciate the dedication of VA
employees and the genuine passion our people show, each and every day, for serving
Veterans and their families. Wherever I go, I meet men and women who care deeply about
our mission, who work enthusiastically to do the right thing for Veterans, and who strive
with integrity to accomplish every task. I believe that to be true still today, and I am
grateful to all of you for your professionalism and perseverance in this effort. I will
depend on you and your admirable work ethic as we move forward.
Notwithstanding the vast body of great work we do for Veterans daily, there remains much
more to be done. In some areas and specific instances, we have fallen far short of what
Veterans have earned and deserve, and what the American people and their representatives
rightly expect. Veterans’ trust—the very foundation of our work—has been compromised.
And so we will earn that trust back, one Veteran at a time, one American at a time.
To begin, we will sharply focus our care, our services, and our resources on Veterans and
operate at all times with unimpeachable integrity. To that end, VA will move out
immediately to get all Veterans off of waiting lists and into clinics for the care they
have earned and deserve, while simultaneously fixing the underlying issues that impede
Veterans’ access. We are not waiting for anyone or anything to commence that work—we
begin now. The President has made clear that his expectations are the same.
The large majority of VA employees expect accountability. Together, we will address
instances of willful misconduct and breaches of integrity. They will not be tolerated,
and I will use all authority afforded me to remove those who choose to put personal gain
ahead of Veterans and professional responsibilities.
We will continue to depend on the faithful service of VA employees and leaders who place
the interests of Veterans above and beyond all else; who serve Veterans with dignity,
compassion, and dedication; and who live by VA’s core values of Integrity, Commitment,
Advocacy, Respect, and Excellence.
Thank you for your dedication to Veterans and our mission to serve them.
Sloan D. Gibson
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May 31, 2014
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Florida Legislation May 31, 2014
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Dependent changes in Benefits
The Rules Based Processing System (RBPS automates the processing of disabled Veterans’
requests to add family members or change their statuses. It will reduce processing time for
changes to compensation benefits associated with a Veteran’s family member status from
months to days.
Veterans who have at least a 30-percent VA disability rating can use eBenefits to request a
change in family member status to:
Add a spouse;
Add a dependent biological child or stepchild, and; Add a child (age 18 to 23) who is
enrolled in an educational institution approved by VA.
From the VISN 8Network Director
The Department of Veterans Affairs cares deeply for every Veteran we serve. Our goal is to provide the best quality, safe
and effective health care our Veterans have earned and deserve. We take seriously any issue that occurs at any one of our
VA health care facilities in Florida and elsewhere in the network -- and we have some important information to share with
As background, as the result of a consult delay issue VA discovered at two medical centers outside VISN 8, the Veterans
Health Administration conducted a national review of consults across the VA system.
• Based on preliminary findings from the national review of consults initiated by VA, it was determined there were
approximately 301,000 consults for Gastroenterology (GI) and GI endoscopy for FY 2010 and 2011 in VISN 8. In
2012, VISN 8 received a list of patients with new GI malignancies identified during FY2010 and 2011 from the
cancer registry for review for evidence of harm related to wait time delays or delay in diagnosis.
• This review resulted in the need for 14 patients to receive Institutional Disclosures. Of these 14 patients, 5 had
died. Of these 5 patients who died, 2 deaths were determined, by a two level review, to not be related to the delays.
Of the remaining 3 patients who died of their malignancy, 2 were from North Florida South Georgia VA Health
System, and 1 from West Palm Beach VAMC.
• First and foremost, we offer our sincerest condolences to families and individuals who may have been affected and
lost a loved one.
• Secondly, when an incident occurs in our system we aggressively identify, correct and work to prevent additional
risks. We conduct a thorough review to understand what happened, prevent similar incidents in the future, and
share lessons learned across the system. In VISN 8, we have taken a number of steps to greater strengthen our
consult process and prevent a similar delay at any of our hospitals.
o We continue to diligently monitor and track the consult management process (which includes not only GI
consults, but all consults) through various mechanisms to avoid delays or potential adverse events:
o VISN and local consult management teams have been established in our facilities with subject matter
experts including Information Technology (IT), Medical Administration, and Clinical representatives–
to monitor and track processes for consults, implement revised business rules for immediate and future
care and validate data
o Processes have been strengthened to track high risk consults and for identified immediate and future
o Monitoring and data validation of the consult processes is conducted daily and weekly. VISN 8 is
currently piloting a clinical tool for healthcare providers, as an additional resource, to validate
abnormal test results to ensure timely follow-up care
To reiterate, any adverse incident for a Veteran in our care is one too many. You have my
promise we will continue to do our very best to provide the best care possible to the Veterans
we are privileged to serve.
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New ID Cards for Vets Enrolled in VA Health Care
VA is introducing a new, secure identification card called the Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC).
VHIC replaces the Veteran Identification Card (VIC), which was introduced in 2004. VA is committed to
providing the high quality, safe and effective health care Veterans have earned and deserve, and part of this
effort includes ensuring the personal security of Veterans. As part of a phased rollout, on February 21, 2014,
VA began issuing the newly designed, more secure VHIC to newly enrolled and other Veterans who were not
issued a VIC. Starting in April VA will begin a replacement effort to automatically mail the more secure
VHIC to Veterans who have the old VIC. All Veterans who are enrolled and have the old card should have
their new replacement card by July. VA expects to complete mailings of the replacement VHICs by July. To
ensure receipt of the new VHIC, enrolled Veterans should make sure that VA has their correct mailing
address. The new VHIC is distinguished by additional security features and will have a different look and
feel. The Social Security number and date of birth were removed from the barcode and magnetic strip.
Similar to a typical health insurance card, the VHIC displays the Veteran’s Member ID and branch of service
emblem, a new unique identifier, as well as a Plan ID which reflects the Veteran’s enrollment in VA health
care. The VHIC is for use in VA medical facilities and does not authorize or pay for care at non-VA medical
facilities. Detail view of the front of the - See more at:
National Director of Volunteer Services Change
This is a heads-up that for personal reasons Ron Minter will be relocating to his home in Waco, TX, where he
will serve as a Senior Associate National Service Officer. Current Deputy HR Director John Kleindenst will
be Acting Director of Voluntary Services. Voluntary services (VS) inquiries that cannot be addressed by the
VS support staff should be directed to John at firstname.lastname@example.org or 859 442 2056. Direct all National
Convention inquiries to Amberly Jackson, Assistant to the National Adjutant at email@example.com or (859)
442-2045. Thank you and take care.
As you are likely aware, Secretary Shinseki has decided to resign his position as the head of Department of Veterans Affairs.
We honor Secretary Shinseki’s service to our country as a combat-disabled veteran and public servant, and respect his decision to
resign and allow new leadership to address this crisis with new solutions.
Ultimately, a change in leadership does not address the root of the VA health care system’s problems of access and appropriate
funding levels. On behalf of DAV’s 1.2 million members, we implore the President to quickly identify and nominate, and the
Senate to rapidly consider and confirm, the next Secretary of Veterans Affairs. In the meantime, DAV stands ready to work
closely with Acting Secretary Sloan Gibson to implement solutions necessary to ensure all veterans can access the health care they
We also hope that a newly appointed Secretary continues to build on the progress made during Secretary Shinseki’s tenure in
addressing the claims backlog, reducing veterans’ homelessness, and improving access to mental health care.
While this crisis is deeply disturbing, we hope the issues uncovered serve as a wakeup call to focus America’s attention on the need
to fulfill the sacred promises made to the men and women who so honorably served our country.”
Our Communications Department is standing by to help should you need assistance with media. If you are approached on this, or
any other issue, please contact Charity Edgar, Associate National Director of Communications at firstname.lastname@example.org, (202) 314-5221
or cell at (202) 641-4822.
Thank you for your continued service to those who’ve served.
DAV National Commander