This week, Americans learned that problems with the VA were much larger than expected. Over 120,000 veterans were affected by extreme wait times – or were unable to get an appointment at all. Waitlists and mismanagement were found at over 730 hospitals nationwide.
This week, the House unanimously passed the Veteran Access to Care Act of 2014 (H.R. 4810) to fix these issues immediately. The bill, sponsored by Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Jeff Miller (R-FL) will give veterans more choices when it comes to their health care, and will hold the VA system accountable.
What this means for our veterans:
-Veterans who have waited longer than the wait-time goals promised by the VA, will be able to seek care outside the VA system.
-Veterans who live over 40 miles from a VA facility will have the ability to pursue non-VA options for health care.
-This act holds the VA accountable by eliminating bonuses for all VA employees for the 2014-2016 fiscal years.
-H.R. 4810 gives the Secretary the ability to begin utilizing this authority immediately following the bill’s enactment.
Last month, the House passed the Department of Veterans Affairs Management Accountability Act of 2014 (H.R. 4031) on May 21. This bill, in addition to H.R. 4810 are real, necessary steps House Republicans are taking to fix our broken VA system. Our veterans deserve the best – and House Republicans remain dedicated to making sure they receive that.