The Veterans Choice Program (VCP) is an innovative partnership between the Department of Veterans Affairs and community healthcare providers that gives veterans an opportunity to seek care from community providers instead of having to wait on an often-backlogged VA hospital or clinic.
But if things don’t fall into place politically, the program could run out of money – thereby hurting veterans and their access to quality healthcare.
Created in 2014 by the Obama administration, the VCP has been a bright spot in an otherwise up-and-down history of veteran care. Congress has to appropriate funds for the program because it uses tax dollars to help pay for the private care it offers to veterans.
However, Congress has yet to act to keep funding the program on a permanent basis. In late December, Congress passed a quick-fix bill granting $2 billion to the program, which will keep the VCP going for a little while.
There’s no long-term solution, though, and without one, the future of the VCP and giving veterans access to private care is in doubt.
One thing that has kept the VCP from being permanently funded is ideology and politics. Some members of Congress don’t believe the government should be involved in healthcare, and they think government-run healthcare is unresponsive, wasteful, and inefficient. The VA has certainly been accused of all of those things; the VCP, in fact, was created in response to horror stories of veterans having to wait months and even years for vital treatment.
But many have come to the VA’s side, arguing that our veterans deserve the best care possible. If funding the VCP is the best way to accomplish this goal – and so far, it has been, judging by just how popular the program has become with veterans – then it should be funded.
We support veterans and fight on their behalf, and we support giving veterans the best care in the world.
Hopefully, Congress will agree and will take even more strides toward helping our veterans get the healthcare they deserve.
Are You a Veteran?
If you’re a veteran, you have unique needs that need to be met. Your service should be honored and you should have the help you deserve.
At Wettermark Keith, we take pride in the service we offer vets as experienced veterans disability lawyers. Our attorneys have worked to get much-needed disability compensation for veterans so they can support themselves and their families.
If you have a disability case you want help with, and you need compensation, contact us. We’ll evaluate your case for free and give you our honest assessment of how we can help. If we can, we will – and we promise nothing but the utmost care and compassion in the process.