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Roe Introduces Bill to Modernize Eligibility for VA Healthcare for First Time in More Than Two Decades

Today, Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (R-Tenn.), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, released the following statement after introducing The Modernizing Veterans' Healthcare Eligibility Act to create a bipartisan commission to assess veterans’ eligibility for care within the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and make recommendations for how to revise and simplify it for the first time since 1996.

“Today’s diverse veteran population deserve a healthcare system that was designed with them – not their grandparents – in mind. In the quarter century since Congress created VA’s healthcare eligibility system, the military, the VA, the healthcare industry, the economy, and the world have changed. The VA healthcare system must change too or risk leaving the heroes it was created for behind. Well-intended but piecemeal changes to provide limited eligibility for care to one group of veterans or another has only added confusion and red tape to an already bureaucratic system. The Modernizing Veterans' Healthcare Eligibility Act would fulfill a recommendation from the bipartisan Commission on Care to create a panel of veterans and healthcare industry experts to conduct a comprehensive examination of veteran eligibility for care and recommended changes to bring it into the 21st century.”

A veteran’s eligibility to enroll in the VA healthcare system today is governed by eight enrollment priority groups that were created by Congress in the Veterans' Health Care Eligibility Reform Act of 1996. However, there has been no comprehensive changes to VA healthcare eligibility since then. To learn more about The Modernizing Veterans' Healthcare Eligibility Act, click here.
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