Opinion: Defense Health Agency and Defense Logistics Agency Memorandum of Agreement: A Good First Step, but What about Coordination with the Department of Veterans Affairs?

“On August 15, 2019, the Defense Health Agency (“DHA”) and Defense Logistics Agency (“DLA”) agreed upon a joint approach to healthcare logistics. Under the Memorandum of Agreement (“MOA”), DLA will be responsible for materiel acquisitions, while DHA will take the lead on medical services acquisitions. The MOA clarifies the agencies’ complementary roles and responsibilities and avoids duplication of effort. The MOA covers all aspects of medical logistics support provided by DLA to DHA, and DHA’s consideration for that support in performance areas including pharmaceuticals, medical-surgical supplies, healthcare technology equipment, cataloging, and Class VIII surge and sustainment materiel required by the services to meet the demands of the national military support strategy.”

“The uninformed might question the need for DHA and DLA to formally enter into a MOA. After all, DHA and DLA are both under the Department of Defense (‘DoD”) umbrella. Why is an agreement required to coordinate the two agencies’ efforts? Why wasn’t such coordination and avoidance of duplication of effort simply ordered by DoD senior command? Good questions perhaps, but the MOA was necessary to ensure the agencies stay in their respective lanes…”

“What about Coordination with the Department of Veterans Affairs?

For years, almost annually, Congress has urged DoD and the Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) to combine efforts when procuring healthcare supplies, including prescription drugs, and services. Over the years, DoD and the VA have politely resisted such coordination efforts citing differing missions; differences in patient populations resulting, for example…” Read the full post here.

Source: Defense Health Agency and Defense Logistics Agency Memorandum of Agreement: A Good First Step, but What about Coordination with the Department of Veterans Affairs? – By Merle M. DeLancey Jr., August 21, 2019. Blank Rome LLP.

 

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