Press Releases

Roe Supports Veteran Access to Care Act

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Washington, June 10, 2014 | Tiffany McGuffee (202-226-8072) | comments

WASHINGTON D.C. – Today, Rep. Roe voted in support of H.R. 4810, the Veteran Access to Care Act. The bipartisan bill passed the House 421-0, and would require the VA to allow any enrolled veteran who cannot get an appointment within VA wait time goals- or who lives more than 40 miles from a VA medical facility- to seek care in the private sector at the department’s expense.

Roe spoke on the House floor in support of the legislation.

To watch video of Rep. Roe’s remarks, click here.

 Rep. Roe’s Remarks as Prepared for Delivery:

I rise in support of H.R. 4810, the Veteran Access to Care Act.

As a physician, veteran, and member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, words cannot express my outrage over the VA’s blatant disregard for the lives of those who served their country honorably and earned timely access to quality health care. 

I’ve run a hospital before and am fully aware how wait times and performance goals work. When the VA set a 14-day goal for scheduling appointments, it should have become immediately apparent that this was unattainable and could only be realized by cooking the books. Even in the private sector, a 14-day wait time is quite ambitious.

This bipartisan legislation offers a simple solution to a deadly problem. The needs of the vast majority of VA patients across the country can and will continue to be met through the existing VA system. But it is outrageous that veterans could die awaiting care that is readily available in the private sector, so this is a commonsense solution, and frankly, the least we should do to help our veterans.

I applaud the work that Chairman Miller, Ranking Member Michaud, and the committee staff have undertaken to hold the VA accountable.

For more information on H.R. 4810, click here
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