Grassroots veterans group thanks Sens. Diaz Jr., Wright for support in giving veterans more health care choices
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—The Florida chapter of Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) on Wednesday commended state Sen. Manny Diaz, Jr. for sponsoring the VA MISSION Act Memorial, a resolution to urge Congress to support the law of the same name and work with the administration to implement it as was intended when it passed and was signed into law last year. The group also thanked Committee on Military and Veterans Affairs and Space Chairman, Sen. Tom Wright, for his leadership in hearing the bill.
“The VA MISSION Act represents a vast improvement to the delivery of health care for veterans in Florida and across the country,” said Diego Echeverri, coalitions director for CVA-Florida. “We thank Sens. Diaz and Wright for their work to make sure Florida’s veterans can get the most from the law and for sending a message to Washington that Floridians want to see it implemented with the veteran, not the bureaucracy in mind. We appreciate their leadership and encourage them to continue fighting for Florida’s veterans.”
The bill, SM852, can be viewed here.
The VA MISSION Act was developed with the goal of better integrating the VA with community health care providers, fixing structural issues with the VA’s outside care programs, and ultimately improving access to care while expanding the health care options available to veterans through the VA.
Notably, it was also endorsed by over 30 veteran service organizations (VSO) and was passed with overwhelming bipartisan support, including that of then-Representative Ron DeSantis before being signed into law by President Trump in June 2018.
The law stabilizes and reforms the VA’s health care system by consolidating the VA’s community care programs, defining clear standards for when a veteran can access care outside of the VA, and initiates a review of the department’s infrastructure. The law also aims to reform the VA’s reimbursement and record-sharing systems for community providers.
For years, CVA has advocated for substantial health care reforms at the VA. In CVA’s Fixing Veterans Health Care Taskforce, the group advocates that veterans should have the option to take their earned health care benefits and use them to access care at the VA or in the private sector.