Senators Put Forward VA Reform Bill

by Tony on July 30, 2014

Concord – NH Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte announced a new legislation yesterday that is intended to reform the Department of Veterans Affairs. The bill would allow veterans to receive care from a non-VA provider if a veteran lives more than 40 miles from a VA medical facility or if the VA cannot provide the requested appointment within VA wait-time goals. An additional provision Shaheen and Ayotte worked to include would give veterans the option of seeking care from a non-VA provider if they reside in a state without a full-service medical facility, like New Hampshire, and live more than 20 miles from the nearest full-service VA hospital. The bill also includes measures to strengthen accountability and transparency at the department in response to the recent mismanagement scandal. The Senators said in a statement “For too long, New Hampshire veterans have been forced to travel long distances to access VA health care, and they deserve better,” The Senators also announced that the VA would be opening two new health care facilities for North Country veterans in Colebrook and Berlin. The Senate is expected to take up the bill in the coming days.