Congressional Committees Monitoring Progress on new VA Act, What it Means for Veterans who Need CareDecember 31, 2018 | :
by Monica Levitan
Congressional Veterans Affairs Committees have expressed concerns about the turnover rates for top and middle leadership at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Moreover, legislators have questioned how the turnover rates are impacting the VA’s priorities such as community care changes and suicide prevention programs.
House and Senate members are monitoring the VA’s progress in determining the details for how and where veterans can receive community care under the department’s new VA MISSION Act that was signed into law by President Trump over the summer. The VA has until June to implement the new program and builds off the previous Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability (Choice) Act that was passed in 2014.
The VA MISSION Act will ultimately determine how easily veterans can utilize community care from the department, as well as how much it will cost the VA to run, according to Federal News Network.
The Choice Act permitted veterans to use a community care service if they lived at least 40 miles away from the nearest VA medical facility or had been waiting at least 30 days for VA care.
Committee members are concerned that the agency may decide on rules that allow veterans to see any doctor they wish at any time, the Federal News Network reported. In addition, they are also worried that the VA won’t meet its deadlines to restructure the seven community care programs into one.