The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) approved a request from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) on March 19 to waive a section of federal law that governs retired VA workers.

The waiver makes it easier for the department to rehire retired VA health care workers and will help VA health care facilities bolster their medical staffs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

VA is implementing the authority and could begin hiring actions as soon as this week.

As a result, VA is inviting interested retired physicians, nurses, pharmacists, laboratory technicians, respiratory therapists and other medical professionals to register online.

VA is especially looking for health care providers with interest and expertise in:

  • Tele/virtual care
  • Travel Nurse Corps
  • Direct patient care/support (at a VA medical center and/or outpatient clinic)

As a re-employed annuitant, you receive your Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS) annuities, as well as a paycheck as a federal employee. The waiver is in effect until March 31, 2021, according to OPM.

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Published on Mar. 25, 2020

Estimated reading time is 1.2 min.

Views to date: 231


  1. Kimberley Veilleux April 11, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    For clinicians that are retired over the age of 60, work in clinical care should not be recommended since you are in a higher risk group for contracting COVID19 with your age alone. If you also have medical conditions that place you in an additional high risk group, you should think twice about clinical work.

    • Michael K Samuels April 15, 2020 at 10:53 am

      I’m a retired RN 62 y/o with 25 years ventilators experience. I mostly worked with pediatrics but it all translates the same.My license is active.Contact me if I can help.My health is mostly good. I like be in Austin.

  2. Manuel Ramirez April 10, 2020 at 12:37 pm

    Greetings though I am not retired, I am willing to volunteer my medical skills where ever needed.

  3. Frederick Bridgeman-Buckler April 10, 2020 at 9:52 am

    Just wondering if the VA is looking for clerical support staff? I had work in clinics, Urgent Care and also work in Medicine Service as their Secretary. I retired in September of 2017.

  4. Kiranmayi chadalavada April 9, 2020 at 1:46 pm

    I am licensed practical nurse retired 2.5 yrs ago would like to work full time in ,CLC(NHCU) Columbia Missouri. Even though I am in India I can relocate as soon as I hear from you. Thanks

  5. Bonnie April 9, 2020 at 11:49 am

    If you recently retired from a medical position at the VA why does one need to go through all the red tape paperwork? I was willing to offer my assistance, I retired one year ago, but when they told me to send in a resume it turned me off from applying.
    Couldn’t they just use your previous records when retirement was not that long ago?

  6. Edgar Martinez April 9, 2020 at 11:18 am

    Retired LPN /Army SFC. Primary care, could answer the phone from home. I have mets to liver on chemo. Tell me how I can help

  7. Gloria Washington April 9, 2020 at 7:07 am

    Retirees RNBSN Nurse Case Mgmt. Atlanta VAMC
    I would love to help in Tele/health telephone triage
    Excellent telephone Triage skills with medication management, mental Health, geriatric

  8. Douglas Brittain April 9, 2020 at 6:36 am

    I have reviewed all the above posts. And I understand all of the concerns, and agree with the wonderful individuals that are ready to serve and help once again. You have an invaluable resource at your disposal, Care givers that come from all branches of service, and from Government Contracted workers. People that simply want to help by donating Blood, or Plasma. You didn’t really even have to ask , we are here!
    Please don’t let the Government Red Tape, and delay, waist these wonderful resources laid before your feet.

    One of the best ideas I have seen in a long time from a government concept !

    Douglas Brittain, PA, Ret.
    United States Navy
    Board certified, Emergency Medicine and Surgery

  9. John D Witherspoon MD April 9, 2020 at 5:15 am

    Ready to work as Surgeon Otolaryngologist FACS…worlldwide

  10. Raymond Votypka April 9, 2020 at 3:21 am

    I’m a retired drafted veteran with an active license how can i apply.

  11. Joseph M. Murley, MD April 9, 2020 at 12:31 am

    I am ready to get involved !Retired
    VA physician with 40 years experience with ER Family Medicine / Geriatrics..
    Should we just contact HR at our local facility. .
    All the best to each of you, Joe

  12. Richard Robbins April 8, 2020 at 11:21 pm

    I fill out an application and sent a resume for the Emergency Response Travel Team. I am a retired 68W and I am a licensed Paramedic with 32 years experience. I have yet to get a respite to my application being filed. I am wondering g where do I go to to get a response. I met the requirements for the team.

  13. Bob April 8, 2020 at 9:41 pm

    I too would like to help, but after starting my 5th year as a volunteer, it was time to renew my ID card with a “chip” to continue to use VA computers. I didn’t have access to medical records but did clinic work on spreadsheets and MS Word. There wasn’t one thing, no matter how crappy I would not do for the clinic. The Minneapolis VA volunteer office jerked me around for 6 months and after 6 months I quit at the clinic. I wasn’t going to drive a 42 mile round trip to continue to sit around during those 6 months doing almost nothing. Everyone in the clinic could vouch I did exceptional work. I even took 16 online classes to be able to do the “Million Vet Program” and help teach Healtevet setup for vets.. But none of this matters as they just could not get a proper card issued and they just don’t care. In case you think it is just me, one of the full time employees retired and immediately changed his status to a volunteer and it took 6 months for him to get the proper ID card to volunteer. He was absolutely top in doing his full time job. That whole volunteer office staff should be fired for such behavior to volunteers vets and the full time person at that clinic. No one was more dedicated than I was to helping vets. I’m totally disgusted with VA administration.

  14. Lionel Thomas Skay April 8, 2020 at 9:01 pm

    I am a retired clinical telehealth technician. I would love to help by going back to hospital and working. But I have a fib and am elderly. What can I do?

  15. Lester A. Meade April 8, 2020 at 8:55 pm

    Offered my training to VA lab here in Boise, turned down!
    X-8412 Navy Lab Tech, X- Navy 8404 Combat Field Corpsman, X- 91B40H Army Medic, X- EMT, X-HS Shop Teacher
    Served in Cuba -1970, served in Kenetra Morocco with Embassy and USMC Exp. Force., 6 years with 163rd Mech Inf. Bat MTNG, served with Co. B -4th Recon – 4rth MARDIV -6 yrs 1997 Reserve Corpsman of the year for 4thMARDIV.
    Have BS in teaching with over 100+ credit hours in Chemistry, Biology and Micro Biology.
    Have 3 years experience as Central Processing Surgical Instrument Supervisor

  16. George Thurman April 8, 2020 at 8:46 pm

    I am a veteran how wants to give back I was a flight medic air ambulance for 6 years and emergency room certified nurse assist for 4 years if anything I can do to help would gladly put the green machine back on and do whatever was asked of meme as I did before

  17. Brian Eargle April 8, 2020 at 7:59 pm

    For nine years, I was a hospital information systems night shift operator at the hospital two blocks away.

    I would like to volunteer as needed for a few weeks or for the duration. But having been out of the loop for 17 years now, I’m disadvantaged even to volunteer. How can I present myself so as to be taken seriously? I can only imagine the chaos if a computer room operator were to drop out of the rotation. Their work schedule is a kller anyway, even with everyone well, just like everyone else’s schedule in a hospital.

  18. W Cristo, Jr MD April 8, 2020 at 6:14 pm

    DR Pettey and other MD’s

    Do not bother with the jackass senators and dorks at Boards of Medicine.

    If u have a valid license, you can work for VA,Navy,Army,etc.

    If their kids had problems they would change their minds .

  19. George B Lampere April 8, 2020 at 6:00 pm

    I too am interested in volunteering my services. I served both on active duty and in the reserves as a Navy Corpsman for 16 years. When I got out, I worked as a paramedic for 8 years. Now I am an organizational psychologist in private practice. I feel a deep responsibility to support my Country in this time of need.

    I had reached out to the VA and other places and did not receive an adequate response. There are several people who feel the same way as I who can do a great job to take the strain off our medical and first responders. Let’s roll!

  20. John Knight April 8, 2020 at 5:31 pm

    I am an Army Retired PA. I am interested in telehealth positions. Please provide more information and feel free to email me.
    Thank you.

  21. W Cristo, Jr MD April 8, 2020 at 5:26 pm

    Dear Dr Petty et al,

    I want to volunteer on the Comfort ship as a Radiologist, based in NY. I called Lieutenant several times . I e mailed Navy Secretary, also

    I feel your pain

  22. Philip April 4, 2020 at 7:51 am

    Good day, i am a pharmacist and would like to partake in this fight against COVID -19. I have over 19 years working experience and i would like to help out in kicking away COVID – 19. This is an excellent Idea.


    • Mary April 4, 2020 at 7:59 am

      Intresting. I am also a retired nurse who would also like to partake in this exercise

      • William Kirkeminde April 8, 2020 at 7:53 pm

        Check with the VA Travel Nurse Corps we would love to have you in NOLA

    • Mike April 8, 2020 at 8:20 pm

      Hello Phil,

      They are selecting prior VA employees. I encourage to apply.

  23. JAMES PETTEY March 28, 2020 at 12:50 pm

    I’m a recently retired orthopaedic surgeon who has also completed a family practice residency. I have 20 years USAF (retired 2007) and 10y in private practice (retired Sept 2018). I’ve tried for one week to volunteer for COVID-19 response and can find no clear avenue. I was finally able to get in contact with the New Orleans VA but have had little to no response from the LA medical board, NY medical board, Wright-Patterson AFB ,etc.

    There must be others such as I who are willing to volunteer but are encountering stumbling block time and time again. I’m still awaiting responses from my KY senator as well as senator Kennedy from LA. Just emailed Surgeon General Adams today.

    Please–help us to to help those in need–Advertise appropriate avenues for medical volunteers and have the news media publish or televise as well.

    Thanks very much and God’s Blessings on you and on our nation.

    • Rob Faulkner April 4, 2020 at 7:57 am

      Agreed, I’ve been searching google and I have yet to find that path. I was a medic in the Army for 6 years, also worked as a surgical first assist for 9 years. Would love to do anything I can to help support.


      • Paul Kirkeminde April 8, 2020 at 7:45 pm

        Check with the VA Travel Nurse Corps we would love to have you in NOLA

    • Paul Kirkeminde April 8, 2020 at 7:49 pm

      Check with the VA Travel Nurse Corps we would love to have you in NOLA

  24. SANDRA L AGUILERA March 27, 2020 at 8:48 pm

    I am in the same situation. I am healthy and would like to donate. If spain used the same parameters for accepting donations, half of the population would not be able to donate for the same reason.

  25. March 26, 2020 at 9:49 am

    It was an excellent choice for healthcare

    • Kimee Armour March 30, 2020 at 8:22 am

      This is the response I received via email and text from the author of the article on (Hope Seck w/ her email The number I was provided is 502-613-4911, it is either busy or answered by voicemail and you are unable to leave a message. I was unable to contact anyone vie phone, but received a survey response yesterday. I don’t think four days turn-around time is too bad for the HRC if being bombarded with 9,000 responses initially. I texted (& emailed) my information to the following url:

      I am medically retired (since 1999) but have been a Critical Care RN over 20+ years. I assumed my assistance would be needed since I have a great deal of experience,but am learning this morning that I will lose my monthly pay if they return me to active duty. One article said people could be used for Civil Service instead of placing us back on active duty. If I return to active duty, which I willingly will jump in head first, I will be demoted to the rank held when I departed. To me,this does not make sense if I am able to work as a civilian RN full-time for the last 20+ years and not lose my disability pay to ensure my family doesn’t become homeless while I am gone helping the Pandemic.

      Best wishes to you. Stay safe and healthy.

      Soldier For Life,

      Thank you for your willingness to return to the team. It speaks to your commitment to the Nation. In reviewing your response, we require additional information to process your submission. For ease of sharing this information with us, please visit our Human Resources Command Homepage at where you will see a COVID19 Voluntary Recall Survey link.

      NOTE: When responding to the survey, please enter the email address at which you received the original message titled: “Army Announces Voluntary Recall of Retired Soldiers for COVID-19 Response.”

      Please know, as we receive requirements that match your skill set, we will make contact with you to move to the next step.

      Again, thank you for your response to the Nation’s call!

  26. Mari March 26, 2020 at 7:42 am

    About blood donations. Would love to donate however like a big population of veterans I lived in Europe for more than six months in the late 80’s. During the mad cow event. Because of this everyone that was over there is not allowed to donate blood. I have the much desired 0 negative blood type. In these times cannot that stupid rule be waived? It’s been well over thirty years!

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