ROSEN MEASURES TO IMPROVE VETERANS CHOICE PROGRAM BECOME LAW
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Today, Congresswoman Jacky Rosen (NV-03) applauded the news that key provisions from her bipartisan bill, the Veterans Deserve Better Act, became law through the passage of the VA Maintaining Internal Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks VA (MISSION) Act, which was signed into law on June 6.
“I’m proud to see provisions from my bipartisan bill signed into law because I know this will help Nevada veterans who have struggled with getting access to the quality care they deserve,” said Rosen. “Our veterans should never have to experience a situation where the federal government forces them to become financially liable for their medical expenses. I look forward to working across the aisle to keep improving access to health care for our veterans.”
BACKGROUND: The Veterans Deserve Better Act aims to improve veterans’ health care by requiring that appointments through the Veterans Choice Program be scheduled by third-party administrators within five days of when a veteran requests an appointment, and ensuring that veterans seeking care have the information they need in advance of scheduling an appointment. This bill would also require the VA to hold private contractors accountable for the care they schedule on behalf of veterans, and ensure reporting and follow-up of delayed appointments. Third, it will require prompt payment to Veterans Choice Program providers by requiring the VA to pay for or deny payment within 30 days of receiving an electronic claim or 45 days of receiving a paper claim. It will also require the VA to pay, deny, or request additional information on any outstanding unpaid claims within 45 days of enactment.
Due to delayed VA reimbursements to Choice providers, veterans have experienced adverse credit reporting and debt collection because the unpaid medical debt is in their name. This is not only confusing for veterans who are under the correct presumption that the reimbursement will be made by the VA to the Choice provider, but can have lasting negative effects on their credit. Rosen is opposed to efforts to privatize the VA.