Paralyzed Veterans of America Associate Executive Director of Government Relations Heather Ansley released the following statement regarding the Senate’s passage of H.R. 7105, the Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020, which would enhance the quality of life for veterans, their families, and caregivers:
“The Paralyzed Veterans of America is pleased the House and Senate have reached agreement on an omnibus package containing language drawn from more than two dozen veteran-related bills in a year-end effort to advance legislation that benefits veterans, their families, and caregivers. We are especially delighted with its inclusion of the Deborah Sampson Act, which strives to improve health care for women veterans, as well as address the many unique challenges they face. Provisions in this section of the bill would prioritize retrofitting of facilities to ensure they meet environment of care standards; ensure each VA facility has accessible clinically appropriate prosthetic appliances for women veterans; and require a study on infertility services provided by the VA. Provisions like these, will improve the quality of care and benefits our women veterans deserve and help them to lead more independent lives.
We are grateful to the many Congressional champions of these provisions with whom we worked over the past two years, and to the House and Senate leadership for keeping this process on track. We now urge the House to pass and the President to sign this act quickly to ensure final passage of H.R. 7105.”
Background on H.R. 7105
Our nation’s veterans deserve and expect quality health care and benefits from the government, whether it’s pandemic assistance and proper burials to retraining assistance and housing. This legislation is designed to help the government better deliver critical services, like those noted above, to the veteran community. Other key provisions included in this bill are: eliminating the 12-year delimiting date for disabled veterans to receive counseling, training, and benefits under the Veteran Readiness and Employment program for eligible disabled veterans who separate from military service after January 1, 2013; requiring the VA to provide disability benefits questionnaires online; and lowering the age a surviving spouse may remarry and still receive dependency indemnity compensation benefits.
Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) is the only congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated solely for the benefit and representation of veterans with spinal cord injury or disease. For more than 70 years, the organization has ensured that veterans receive the benefits earned through their service to our nation; monitored their care in VA spinal cord injury centers; and funded research and education in the search for a cure and improved care for individuals with paralysis. Learn more at www.pva.org.