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  • VA: Choice program isn't being ditched

    Type of content: News

    Veterans Affairs Secretary Bob McDonald is promising Congress that his department is not trying to dismantle the new Choice Card program.

    But lawmakers remain skeptical.

    On Thursday, McDonald testified before the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee about VA's fiscal 2016 budget request, which includes plans to ask for "flexibility" to shift money designated for the Choice Card program to other areas if usage of the card doesn't pick up.

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    Benefits
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    VA
  • The Veterans Independence Act: Giving Vets A Way Out Of Socialized Medicine

    Type of content: News

    Few Americans who read a newspaper didn’t hear about last year’s Veterans Health Administration scandal, in which VA officials manipulated patient waiting lists in order to deny care to ailing veterans. I observed at the time that the VA’s brand of government-run medicine was far worse than Obamacare. And I questioned why lawmakers hadn’t done more to reform veterans’ health care.

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    Legislation
    Mental Health
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    VA
  • Senators urge VA chief to fix ‘choice card’ woes

    Type of content: News

    A bipartisan coalition of 41 senators is pressing Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald to remedy the implementation of a program that allows veterans to seek private medical care.

    The effort, often called the "choice card," allows veterans to seek medical care at non-VA providers, if they live more than 40 miles from an agency facility or if they cannot get a doctor’s appointment within 30 days.

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    VA
  • Tricare proposal splits veterans' groups

    Type of content: News

    The leaders of several prominent veterans’ and uniformed services’ organizations are split over a proposal to effectively abolish Tricare, the military’s health insurance plan.

    The proposal, one of 15 recommendations put forward by the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission, has become a flashpoint on Capitol Hill.

    The suggested change would allow nearly 5 million active-duty family members, reserve soldiers and military retirees who are not yet old enough to receive Medicare, to leave the Tricare system and sign up for a private insurance plan.

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    DoD
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  • Harvard honors Montco's veterans ID plan

    Type of content: News

    NORRISTOWN The Montgomery County Recorder of Deeds Office's veterans ID program has been deemed a 2015 "Bright Idea in Government" by scholars at Harvard University.

    The program offers veterans a free photo ID that carries discounts at more than 400 local businesses. For the county, it's a way to get veterans in the door and record their military-discharge paperwork.

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    Benefits
    Legislation
  • Rep. Graham Proposes Bill to Boost Aid for Injured Veterans

    Type of content: News

    PANAMA CITY-- UPDATE: 10 p.m.

    A new bill could soon provide help for ill and injured post-9/11 veterans across the United States. And it's sponsored by Florida Rep. Gwen Graham.

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    Education
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  • Veterans in Congress Bring Rare Perspective to Authorizing War

    Type of content: News

    WASHINGTON — Veterans of the wars in Iraqand Afghanistan now serving in Congress have emerged as some of the most important voices in the debate over whether to give President Obama a broad authorization for a military campaign against the Islamic State or something much more limiting.

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    Legislation
  • Michigan Legislature Passes Bill Allowing Preferential Hiring for Veterans

    Type of content: News

    Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) February 16, 2015 – The Michigan House of Representative and Senate have both unanimously passed a bill that permits Michigan employers to begin using a hiring policy that would give preference to veterans.

    Previously, Michigan employers were forbidden by law to use any sort of preferential hiring policy. Federal law prohibits preferential hiring policies except in the case of veterans, for which states must adopt laws specifically allowing preferential treatment of veterans.

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    Employment
    Legislation
  • New bill for Veterans would help them start families

    Type of content: News

    WASHINGTON D.C. – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) introduced a bill on Wednesday that would allow veterans who have suffered catastrophic injuries to receive reproductive services.

    The bill, titled the Women Veterans and Families Health Services Act of 2015, would end the Department of Veteran Affairs' ban on in vitro fertilization, or IVF, and expand the Department of Defense's current fertility treatment programs.

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    DoD
    Family
    Legislation
    Physical Well-Being
    VA
  • Lawmaker blasts budget plan to trim VA Choice Program

    Type of content: News

    Veterans Affairs officials don't know how many veterans are using the new "choice card" program, but it's a small enough total that they want to start taking money out of the program.

    The move is likely to ignite a lengthy fight on Capitol Hill with lawmakers who created the program last summer following the department's patient-wait-time scandal and who doubt VA's ability to serve veterans in a timely and effective manner.

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    Legislation
    Physical Well-Being
    VA

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