PHOENIX, Ariz. – Overcome by congressional inquiries, bad press, and the smell of decaying bodies in its waiting rooms, the Veterans Health Administration released a statement today telling veterans to use self-aid and buddy-aid before attempting to make a doctor’s appointment.
“We figured out that we didn’t need to improve our processes or hire more physicians,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “We just needed to reduce the number of appointments to lower our waiting times.”
Wilkie told reporters that mandating self-aid and buddy-aid prior to requesting an appointment will help patients get seen within the VA’s current “Golden Year” timeline for routine appointments and “Platinum Ten Months” for patients with more life-threatening ailments.
To assist veterans in helping themselves and their comrades in arms, the VA is launching the “Pre-Hospital Assistance Program.” PHAP (pronounced fap), is modeled after the Army’s “Combat Lifesaver Program” where soldiers deploying to Iraq or Afghanistan learned how to give IVs, apply tourniquets, and get shot down by the sturdy female medics who taught the class.
In addition to training on emergency medical techniques, veterans enrolled in the rigorous ten-minute PHAP course will learn how to dispense kidney-quivering amounts of Motrin, apply snake oil to cancerous tumors caused by burn pits, and other pain prolonging measures to help their former brothers and sisters in arms.
“I think it’s a super idea,” said retired Army Spec. Alan Carnegie as he applied a makeshift tourniquet to a CPR mannequin’s neck. Carnegie, a signals intelligence collector who was medically retired for chronic vaginitis, is one of the first trainees in the pilot program.
“I’d just be sitting in my truck, posting rants about respecting the national anthem or stolen valor. Now, I can help Smitty over here manage his Rip It induced diabetes.”
The VA says it remains dedicated to caring for the nation’s veterans. They just need to take care of themselves and each other first.