Rep. Cook Votes to Improve Veterans' Healthcare
Rep. Paul Cook (R-Apple Valley) voted today in support of S. 2372, the VA Mission Act. The bill provides major reforms to VA. It passed the House with bipartisan support.
The bill strengthens and improves the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare system for the approximately nine million veteran patients who utilize the system. The bill consolidates multiple community care VA programs, including the Choice Program, into one system that is easier to navigate for veterans, VA employees, and community partners. It will help to ensure that veterans are getting the right care at the right time with the right provider.
It also provides additional funding to sustain the Choice Program, which could be exhausted by the end of May. The Choice Program is one of several programs through which a Veteran can receive care from a community provider if he or she cannot receive care in a timely manner from a nearby VA facility.
Additionally, S. 2372 expands eligibility for the VA’s Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, which promotes and enhances veteran wellbeing for those who require the care and assistance of another. Post-9/11 veterans have benefitted greatly from this program and this bill ensures future veterans maintain access to it.
Rep. Cook said, “Too often veterans get lost in bureaucracy of the VA, without receiving the help they have earned. This bipartisan bill will improve and expand critical care for our nation’s veterans and ensure that there’s no lapse in funding for the Choice program. I hope this critical bill is swiftly signed into law.”
A member of the House Armed Services, Natural Resources, and Foreign Affairs Committees, Cook served as an infantry officer and retired after 26 years as a Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps. During his time in combat, he was awarded the Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts.