Runyan works to accelerate health care process for disabled vets

The House Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs will mark up a bill on Tuesday that would help disabled veterans gain access to healthcare more quickly.

The proposed bill, named the Disabled Veterans’ Access to Medical Examinations Improvement Act, is sponsored by the committee’s chair Rep. Jon Runyan (R-N.J.).

The goal of the legislation is to improve the authority of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to enter into contracts with private physicians to conduct medical disability examinations. The bill would also expand the number of civilian doctors that are involved to ultimately help speed up the claims process so that veterans will have faster access to healthcare.

“This critical piece of legislation addresses one of the most serious issues facing our nation’s veterans, the claims backlog,” Runyan said. “The backlog is forcing our veterans to deal with too much bureaucratic red-tape to obtain the benefits they earned through their service to our country. H.R. 2423 speeds up the very first step vets have to go through to begin the claims process: undergoing their disability exam.”

The VA operates the largest integrated health care system in the United States and operates more than 1,700 hospitals, clinics, community living centers, domiciliaries, readjustment counseling centers and other facilities.