At a VA clinic in Colorado Springs, they were falsifying records to make it look like they were taking care of our veterans when they weren’t. This wasn’t just a matter of cutting a few clerical corners. In dozens of cases, according to a new report from the VA’s own watchdog, employees made it appear as if veterans received same-day appointments when in reality they waited an average of 76 days.
Our veterans deserve better, which is why today the House is taking up six more initiatives to address the problems at the VA:
- Hospital Reform: H.R. 3234, introduced by Rep. Martha Roby (R-AL), requires the VA to address problems at underperforming facilities and deploy specialists to fix them. “This is a great opportunity to give the VA… more tools they need to deal with the worst of the worst within the health systems,” Rep. Roby says.
- Construction Reform: H.R. 3106, introduced by Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-FL), boosts oversight of the VA’s construction process, which has given us such fiascos as a hospital in Denver that ended up more than $1 billion over budget.
- Employment, Education, and Healthcare Reform: H.R. 3016, introduced by Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), extends the length of time for which newborn babies are eligible for VA care, and gives spouses of fallen servicemembers more time and flexibility to use GI Bill benefits, and closes a loophole that leads to exorbitant tuition expenses.
- COLA Reform: H.R. 677, introduced by Rep. Ralph Abraham (R-MI), makes the annual cost-of-living adjustment for veterans automatic.
- Female Veteran Suicide Prevention: H.R. 2915, introduced by Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA), builds on the suicide prevention law enacted last year by ensuring that the VA is focused on suicide prevention programs that are most effective for women.
- Protecting Student Veterans: H.R. 2360, introduced by Rep. Mark Takano (D-HI), protects the integrity of the GI Bill by ensuring that schools meet state-specific criteria for accreditation and certification.