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Beneficiary Travel Claims Anomalies?

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Vync

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  • Content Curator/HadIt.com Elder

Please let me know your thoughts!

Have you noticed any difference in the mileage depending on the time of day that you file the claim?

For example, my VAMC appointment was at 7:30 am and it literally took me over an hour to get there one way and about 45 minutes to get home this morning. I did use the Google GPS maps to find the fastest route, which this morning took me directly into downtown Birmingham and looping back to the parking deck  This afternoon, I logged in to file a travel claim at about 1:30 pm Central. It now shows the one-way travel time as being 34 to 40 minutes. I know they use Microsoft's Bing maps for travel purposes. It currently shows mileage right at 50 miles round trip. I was curious if I might try filing the claim during morning or afternoon rush hours to see if it reflects a more accurate route and more accurate mileage.

Before the web site went active, I know they used to use a fixed mileage value based on your residence. I am wondering if it now calculates it dynamically based on the routes and traffic based on when you filed, but not necessarily when you drove...

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  • Content Curator/HadIt.com Elder

@blahsaysme2u Until recently, the clerks would print the voucher, we would sign it, and then deliver it to the travel clerk (at their window or a secure dropbox). Back in the day, we used to be able to take them to the agent cashier and leave immediately with cash in pocket for fuel or lunch. I honestly miss those days. Yeah, we had to stand in line if we wanted to get it instantly, but it still is considerably faster than the current system.

Today, they said all travel is now done online. It's a real headache, even for a programmer like me, due to very poor site design. My community care visit from last month could not be filed until last week because they had to manually add my doc to the system. Additionally, I have some claims currently in the system that are more than 10 days old. They are classified as "manual review". I realize they are short handed, but it would be nice to actually get the travel money in a reasonably fast timeframe.

 

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I have had issues with the travel web site also. I have to manually  put in half of what I claim; the others do show up and you can start the process fairly straight foward. It's now taking 3 weeks or more to get them into the bank. I guess we call that "process improvement." I didn't know that time of travel figures into the process any longer though.

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  • Content Curator/HadIt.com Elder

@GBArmyI think that the mileage given the time off day might be a factor. I was going to submit, but looked over at the map and saw it said "less traffic than normal" or something like that. I printed it to a PDF file and will try tomorrow morning during rush hour to see if it appears differently. However, I do not know if the travel site is set for the shortest, fastest, or most fuel efficient route.

Here is the Birmingham metro area. The shortest route by distance us North on I-65, get off on 8th avenue (where University of Alabama Birmingham is located), then drive down to the annex building just before US 280. During rush hour, it told me to go North on I-65, then take I-20, then go on US 280 and get off at the 8th avenue exit. It was three or four miles longer. Could mean the difference between a couple of extra bucks.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Vync Certainly let us know what the results are and if makes a difference. You might ask them what their turn-around time is supposed to be as it sure seems it is getting worse.

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