Resource allocations within the VA health care system are based in part on the number of veterans in an area plus the number of veterans expected to move into that area. This paper examines the relative importance of geographic mobility as a factor affecting the use of VA health services by the older veteran population in the U.S. Using a variety of secondary data sources, we found that the variation in state VA health service admission rates is better explained primarily by the characteristics of the resident nonmobile veteran population and the characteristics of veterans migrating to the state, not just by their numbers. Health care demand projections should take these findings into account.

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