A Budget for America’s Veterans

For Immediate Release

The plan, authored by DAV, PVA, and VFW, offers a realistic way forward for veterans’ health care.

Washington, D.C. | January 21, 2019 – The Veterans Healthcare Policy Institute supports ‘The Independent Budget: Veterans Agenda for the 116th Congress’ as a prudent blueprint to address veterans’ immediate healthcare needs as well as those of future generations.

“The Independent Budget is a sober set of recommendations in a time of upheaval at the Veterans Health Administration,” said Russell Lemle, a VHPI senior policy analyst. “This budget would ensure money for non-VA care would only go to providers whose qualifications, training and competence are as good as VA providers.”

VHPI projects the quality of care of non-VA providers could be improved through the Veterans Community Care Partners if Congress adopts the Independent Budget. The document states that health outcomes – not the number of veterans who use non-VA providers – must be the basis that determines successful veterans’ health care.

However, if the VA MISSION Act is implemented without careful monitoring of the care non-VA providers deliver to veterans, billions of dollars will be diverted from VA programs as veterans are pushed into inferior or unknown quality care provided by the private sector.

“Our nation has required much from our veterans, often leaving them with chronic illness and injury,” said Brett Copeland, VHPI’s executive director. “While non-VA care may be appropriate for some veterans, carving up the healthcare system best-suited to treat their unique conditions and needs will end up hurting them, while bleeding taxpayers dry,”

The Independent Budget was co-authored by Disabled American Veterans, Paralyzed Veterans of America, and Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States and is supported by 24 other veteran and health care advocacy organizations.

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The Veterans Healthcare Policy Institute, a non-partisan, 501(c)3 non profit organization, tank that empowers veterans and provides evidence-based information to decision makers that leads to better healthcare outcomes for veterans. VHPI  was founded by veterans and their caregivers, healthcare providers and professionals, and healthcare journalists in 2016. Learn more at veteranspolicy.org/about and on Twitter and Facebook.

Brett Copeland