Wednesday, 20 June, 2018


Trump to sign bill expanding private care for veterans

President Donald Trump has signed a bill into law that will expand private care for veterans as an alternative to the troubled Veterans Affairs health system PROMISE KEPT: Trump Signs VETERANS ACT to Expand Healthcare
Patty Aguilar | 09 June, 2018, 14:02

"Our position is that we should pay for this under the existing spending cap, as the House MilCon/VA bill does, rather than increasing spending by raising the cap", said a GOP leadership aide.

TRUMP: "In the campaign, I also promised that we would fight for Veterans Choice".

Situations covered under the VA Mission Act of 2018, which grants veterans access to private care, include situations in which the VA does not offer the care a veteran needs, the distance to a VA clinic is too far, or private care is in the best medical interest of the veteran.

Jack Wingerter thinks the United States has always been one of the worst countries in many areas of health care, specifically citing availability for senior citizens and veterans, but he feels there may be some light at the end of the tunnel. Caregivers will be eligible for medical care from the VA as well.

The act establishes standards for veterans to consult with the private sector for "timely and effective care". The House passed a version of the legislation in November.

Congress approved the CHOICE act as an emergency measure to begin the process of improving the services to veterans, including allowing veterans to use medical providers outside of the VA. Veterans have been able to use providers outside the VA since World War II, but the act provided an additional avenue for these services, Roe said, adding that 38 percent of health care services provided through veterans' benefits are outside the VA system. The third involves caregiver benefit expansion. For veterans in Dunn's district, the nearest VA facility that performs organ transplants is in Nashville. From Veterans not receiving care, to providers not receiving reimbursement for the care provided, the shortfalls and red-tape of the Choice Program have been problematic for years.

That act also made it easier for whistleblowers to step forward.

The White House contends that there is plenty of money already dedicated to Veterans Affairs. The North Florida Republican introduced this bill back in September. This newest round of funding will allow the program to run until VA finalizes updates to the newly-minted Veterans Community Care Program.

The PDMPs identify and alert of abuse patterns in patients, a key step to stopping widespread abuse of the drugs, which are risky in part due to their highly addictive properties.

Part of the PDMPs' shortcomings, according to President Donald Trump's Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, is the lack of cross-state interoperability.

"We don't think the private sector has the ability to do it", said Lanham.

Lanham, an Army veteran, says frequently the unique health needs of veterans can only be properly addressed at a VA facility. John Tester of Montana, the top Democrats on Veterans Affairs Committee.

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