Monday Muster: VA check-in system improved with texting

In this week’s Monday Muster, Tuscaloosa VA Medical Center Program Specialist Charlotte Davis is highlighting a new service available via the VA’s mobile app.

“We’re rolling out a new application where the patient can check in by text,” Davis said.

VA patients can now check in before an appointment, and they’ll get a text message within seven days before that appointment.

“The veteran will receive a link and they must enter their last name and date of birth,” Davis said.

The text is looking for a response to two questions:

  • Is your emergency contact information correct?
  • Is your next of kin correct?

“The veteran will have 30 minutes before the appointment and up to 30 minutes after the appointment to text back to 53079 and they’ll have to text ‘check in’ and it will check them in for their appointment,” Davis said.

There is still staff on-site at all the VA clinics, Davis said, so if this service doesn’t work for a veteran they can still check in the same way they’re used to. But the new check-in method has some huge pluses, she said.

“The lines won’t be as long because they’ll have already checked in by the time they get to the clinic,” Davis said. “They’ll just have a seat in the waiting area and wait to be called after that. We have a lot of veterans that are loving this system, especially the younger veterans, because most of the time they only use cell phones, so they’re loving this system.”

Monday Muster is brought to you by the Tuscaloosa VA Medical Center. Our goal is life-long health, well-being, and resilience for the veterans we serve.

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