Advances treatment ‘in the veterans’ best interest’
Lewiston – Veterans will see improved options for health care and reductions in red tape under legislation introduced by Idaho Senator Mike Crapo. The Veterans Health Administration Reform Act of 2017, or S. 1279, was written using responses from Crapo’s two statewide veterans’ surveys and information from Congressionally-mandated reports suggesting how veterans’ health care could be improved. The bill builds on legislation Crapo introduced last year to establish the “Care in the Community” program, which is the program Crapo would like to see replace the Veterans Choice Program (VCP).
Delays for appointments and treatments through Veterans Health Administration (VHA) facilities led to the creation of the VCP. The VCP was intended to enable the expansion of treatment options with private sector doctors, but veterans still face significant bureaucratic hurdles Crapo seeks to ease with the legislation. Crapo noted the bill does not seek to cut funding to existing VA treatment programs—rather expedite treatment in the private sector when it is in the veteran’s best interest.
“I told our veterans I would continue to press for sensible reforms at the VA. This measure addresses some of the underlying problems that made the VCP so difficult for veterans and the VA. The bill is focused on the veteran and on providing veterans easy access to care whenever it is in the veteran’s best interest,” Crapo said. “Our veterans have put their lives on the line for our freedom. We owe it to them to easily obtain the best and most expedient care possible.”
Crapo will discuss the Veterans Health Administration Act Tuesday during a stop in Lewiston. His Tuesday schedule is as follows:
Tuesday, May 30:
Lewiston 9:30 AM Discusses new legislation to streamline VA and private health care for veterans. At the Lewiston VFW Sourdough Post 10043, 1104 Warner Avenue
Orofino 12:45 PM Meets with membership of the Clearwater Basin Collaborative to discuss county payments and the collaborative process, Forest Service Offices, 12730 U.S. Highway 12