The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has more than tripled the numbers of agency employees teleworking on a daily basis since February, an agency spokesperson told MeriTalk.
The agency “estimates that between 130,000 to 140,000 department employees are teleworking daily now,” said the VA spokesperson in an email. “In February, VA had an average of 30,000 to 40,000 employees teleworking daily, with a peak of just over 57,000.”
The spokesperson credited recent COVID-19 supplemental funding with helping the agency make the turn to widespread telework, and allowing for the purchase of additional laptop computers and mobile devices.
On an overall basis, VA has been one of the biggest Federal buyers of COVID-19 related items since February, inking over 2,100 contracts with a combined value of more than $1 billion, according to data obtained last week through the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS).
The agency’s Office of Information Technology is “scaling bandwidth, capacity, inventory, and emergency devices,” the spokesperson said, “to meet and stay ahead of [Veterans Health Administration’s] needs.”