Wednesday, April 30, 2014
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Robert Hurt (R-Virginia) released the following statement after voting in favor of H.R. 4486, the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, which would address the unacceptable claims backlog at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA):
"Our veterans should not be forced to wait hundreds of days, and in some cases much longer, for the medical benefits they have earned by making incredible sacrifices on behalf of our freedom. It is of the utmost importance that we work to address this backlog of disability claims, and I am encouraged by the passage of this bill which brings us one step closer to providing a solution to this serious issue facing our nation's veterans."
· The VA has established an objective to process all disability claims within 125 days, with 98% accuracy by the end of 2015. In accordance with this effort, H.R. 4486 prioritizes resources to increase the VA's capability to quickly and effectively address the backlog.
· H.R. 4486 also supports VA medical services, allowing 6.7 million patients to be treated over the course of the year. This includes treatment for mental health care, suicide prevention, traumatic brain injury treatment, homeless veterans programs, and rural health initiatives.