A bill to increase health care flexibility for veterans has been introduced by Congressman Jerry Carl, R-Alabama, who said in a statement Tuesday it would remove “unnecessary red tape” for veterans seeking outside care.
The Veterans Health Care Flexibility Act would allow veterans more flexibility in seeking health care outside the Veterans Community Care Program, according to Carl, who noted that veterans “are limited in the outside care they are able to receive” because of six criteria for veterans must meet to receive community care.
“Last week, I hosted a roundtable with some of south Alabama’s veterans to learn about different ways I can serve them in Congress,” Carl said in a statement Tuesday. “These veterans made it clear to me that it is past time to reform the VA health care system by giving veterans more control over the health care they are eligible to receive.”
The six criteria that veterans seeking outside care must meet include if a veteran requires a service not available at a VA hospital, if a veteran lives outside the U.S, and if it’s in the veteran’s best interest to seek outside medical care, according to the VA.
“With their concerns and recommendations in mind, I’m proud to introduce the Veterans Health Care Flexibility Act, which will allow veterans the flexibility to seek health care outside of the VA system, rather than being forced to travel long distances to a VA facility or wait entirely too long to receive care,” Carl said. “This legislation is just the first of many steps we will take to ensure our veterans are receiving the quality of care they deserve. I’m proud to represent so many veterans in Congress, and I will continue being a fighter for them in Washington.”