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Reducing Wait Times for Disability Applications: Spike Teams

Reducing wait times for disability benefit applications is the number one priority at Veterans Affairs Canada. We understand why Veterans and their families are frustrated, and we are making changes to address these concerns head on.

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Reducing Wait Times for Disability Applications: Spike Teams

In June 2020, we released a strategy to address the long-standing issue of wait times for disability benefits decisions: Timely Disability Benefits Decisions. This includes hiring 350 additional full-time staff for two years to support decision-making and form “Spike Teams” that focus on the most common disability benefit applications we receive.

Since we released our plan, the Spike Teams have been hired, trained and, as of January 2021, have started making decisions on disability benefit applications. About 25% of these employees are French or bilingual, which helps us ensure progress on both French and English applications. All of these additional Spike staff are organized in the Veteran Benefit Team format. With the addition of Spike Teams to our regular staff, we expect to significantly reduce the number of claims in the backlog, that is those waiting beyond the 16-week service standard, by the end of March 2022.

As the efforts of the Spike Teams ramp up, the progress will show in future quarterly reports.

Date published: 2021-01-19

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