Sens. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) and Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) introduced legislation Monday that aims to expand care for veterans by rolling back federal regulations.
The bill would allow the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to contract with more private businesses to provide extended care, and would allow for more treatment options, including hospice and home healthcare.“Our veterans should not be forced to choose between being near their loved ones and accessing the care they need,” Hoeven said in a statement. “Our legislation will make more options available to our former service members who need long-term care services.”
Hoeven and Manchin said federal requirements have kept many long-term care providers from working with veterans. Under current regulations, they said, less than 20 percent of nursing homes in North Dakota and 20 percent in West Virginia contract with the VA.
Manchin said the legislation would eliminate “red tape” that prevents veterans from getting care.
“Our veterans and their families have already sacrificed so much for this country. They should not have to worry about being denied care solely because of burdensome federal VA contracting requirements,” Manchin said in a statement. “I am pleased to introduce legislation … that gets rid of this red tape in order to make sure our veterans can access the services they need.”
Reps. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) and Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) have introduced companion legislation in the House.