Kinzinger bill aims to improve veteran care

Legislation introduced by Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) on Tuesday would allow veterans to seek medical care from health centers that aren’t affiliated with the Veterans Administration rather than travel long distances to receive care at a VA facility.

The Veteran-Centered Access to Coordinated Health Care Act of 2014 also would take steps to enhance the coordination of treatment veterans receive outside the VA network to improve efficiency and quality of care.

“The men and women who fought and sacrificed for our country deserve not only the best care we can provide them, but also ready access to that care,” Kinzinger said. “Right now, too many of our former soldiers – and many in the rural communities I represent – don’t get the care they need because they live too far from the nearest VA facility. My bill will make it easier for veterans to see a doctor that’s close and convenient to them and will enhance coordination at the VA to ensure they’re getting the best care out there. Making a trip to the doctor’s office a little easier is the least we can do for those who stood up to defend our country in its hour of need.”

Kinzinger’s measure would reauthorize a former pilot program, the Access Received Closer to Home, and extend it throughout the country.