- The Washington Times
Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Department of Veterans Affairs apologized Wednesday for an “ill-advised” policy that banned veterans from bringing their cellphones to appointments.

Photographs, first published on the blog Disabled Veterans, emerged earlier this week showing official VA leaflets alerting veterans that their appointments would be canceled if they brought a cellphone with them, the Washington Free Beacon reported.

The signs gave a list of “prohibited items,” which included images of a gun, a knife, a backpack and an iPhone.

“If brought to your appointment will [sic] result in the cancellation of your exam(s),” reads the leaflet, which bears the VA’s official logo.

The notices were included in appointment packages to veterans, a VA official told the Free Beacon.

“The flyer included in Veterans’ Compensation and Pension (C&P) appointment letters at the VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System’s (ECHCS) Golden community based outpatient clinic were ill-advised,” the VA official said in a statement.

The official made clear that exams will not be canceled if a phone is brought to appointments.

“All C&P program managers across the system have been informed that the distribution of these, or similar, flyers should be immediately discontinued,” the official said. “The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) goal is to provide veterans with the care and the opportunities for health that they have earned through their service and sacrifices.”

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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