They deserve better.
Rural Military Veterans Deserve a Better Health Plan
Veterans Day is all about the gratitude we feel toward our military Veterans for their service to our Nation. And in return for their service, our heroes have earned the best benefits and support a rich and grateful Nation can provide – with health, medical, and mental health care at the top of the list. That’s why I’m working so hard in Congress to reform the Veterans Choice program, and ensure that no rural Veteran should ever have to travel hundreds of miles to a VA clinic in a big city for routine health care they can easily receive from a local private provider.
As I pointed out to those who participated in the annual Veterans Day “March On” event in Duluth over the weekend, Congress is making progress on a bill to fix Veterans Choice. Specifically, we need to include more local health care providers, streamline the billing process, and ensure that Veterans and their doctors are the ones who decide the best medical options together, without interference from unnecessary third parties.
And thanks to the hundreds of military Veterans who provided their input during the meetings Minnesota Congressman Tim Walz and I have held throughout the Eighth District, our local perspective is being well represented in the debate. As you may know, Congressman Walz is the highest-ranking Democrat on the House Veterans Affairs Committee – the minority equivalent of Chairman.
Rest assured that Congressman Walz and I will continue to build support for a new Veterans Choice program that meets the needs of our heroes. And we will keep working to expand current efforts by the Veterans Affairs Administration to provide better mental health care to stem the rate of suicide – 22 Veterans on average every day; provide more opportunities for Veterans to succeed with good paying civilian jobs; and put an end to homelessness that still plagues nearly 40,000 Veterans on any given night.
As I have said many times before, if our Nation can afford to send our best and brightest young people into harm’s way all around the world, we can afford to take care of them when they return home. That’s how we demonstrate real gratitude, and say in a very real way, “Thank you for your service.”
We will keep you posted as events proceed. Meanwhile, I want to hear your thoughts. Feel free to contact any of our offices listed below or send me an email.
The full letter is available HERE.