FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 6, 2016
Contact: Amanda Maddox, 202-224-7777
Lauren Gaydos, 202-224-9126
Isakson Statement on Comprehensive VA Reform Legislation
‘We in Congress must now put veterans first… Anything less is failing those who served us’
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, today issued the following statement regarding the bipartisan, comprehensive legislative package he is drafting in the Senate to reform the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA):
“As chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, comprehensive reform of the VA has always been and remains my highest priority. I have been working for weeks to craft bipartisan legislation that I believe can pass the Senate that would require significant improvements in the way the VA treats our veterans and holds its employees accountable.
“While we are still finalizing the details of the legislation, it will include strong provisions to:
· Hold all VA employees accountable for mismanagement and misconduct;
· Provide caregiving benefits to veterans of all generations;
· Address the crisis of opioid over-prescription among veterans;
· Expand availability of orthotic and prosthetic care for veterans;
· Help reduce the VA’s appeals backlog; and
· Implement strict rules to ensure community physicians providing care to our veterans receive prompter payment for that care.
“I am sincerely appreciative of the bipartisan, bicameral collaboration that has helped pave the way for this sweeping reform legislation. I look forward to working with my Senate colleagues and with the House to pass these significant and meaningful reforms for our nation’s veterans.
“We in Congress must now put veterans first and get a bill to the president’s desk. Anything less than that is failing those who served us.”
The Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs is chaired by U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., in the 114th Congress.
Isakson is a veteran himself – having served in the Georgia Air National Guard from 1966-1972 – and has been a member of the Senate VA Committee since he joined the Senate in 2005. Isakson’s home state of Georgia is home to more than a dozen military installations representing each branch of the military as well as more than 750,000 veterans.