On Thursday the Coalition traveled to Chicago to host a “Myth-Busters” Healthcare Committee meeting with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) National Acquisition Center (NAC).  The VA NAC manages a family of Federal Supply Schedule (FSS) contracts for pharmaceuticals, medical supplies and services.  A primary focus of the Coalition Healthcare Committee is the operations, policies and procedures of the VA’s FSS program.   The meeting provided an opportunity for the VA NAC leadership team and members to engage in a “Myth-Busters” dialogue on key issues, initiatives and policies governing the procurement operations and administration of the VA’s FSS program.

Feedback from the attendees on the meeting was uniformly positive!  Members in attendance appreciated the open, transparent discussion on the VA’s FSS program. Thank you to Craig Robinson, Associate Deputy Secretary for National Healthcare Acquisitions, for facilitating and participating in the Myth-Busters dialogue!  Thank you to Contract Division Chiefs Greg Madden, James Booth, and Bob Satterfield for addressing many key issues and questions throughout the meeting.  Thank you to all the Senior VA contracting officers and VA legal counsel who attended the meeting and also participated in the dialogue.

Myth-Busters dialogue is vital to a healthy, efficient and effective procurement system.  Positive dialogue between government and industry regarding procurement policies, acquisition procedures, and mission requirements fosters greater understanding on both sides—understanding that reduces uncertainty and risk which ultimately reduces costs for all in the procurement process.    Indeed, dialogue and communication are the foundations upon which successful procurement outcomes for the American people are built.  We believe that this week’s Myth-Busters dialogue with the VA NAC promotes a more efficient and effective FSS program that supports our Veterans’ healthcare needs.  After all, isn’t that what it is all about?   Our Myth-Busters dialogue supports a VA FSS program that delivers best value support for our Veterans—those who have who have done so much for all of us!

On behalf of the Coalition membership, I commend and thank the VA NAC team for the Myth-Busters conversation and look forward to continuing the dialogue!

Roger Waldron

President