TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – Senator Jerry Moran has launched legislation to assist ease the burden of travel costs for veteran health care.
U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) says he and Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) launched legislation on Wednesday, Sept. 14, to improve reimbursement charges for veterans who’re required to travel to get medical care supplied by means of the Department of Veterans Affairs. He mentioned U.S. Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-CA) will introduce companion legislation within the House.
“Inflation and rising costs have resulted in more and more veterans shouldering additional costs when traveling to receive health care provided by the VA,” mentioned Sen. Moran. “Raising reimbursement rates will help keep the Beneficiary Travel Program relevant and make certain travel-related costs are not inhibiting our veterans from receiving the care they deserve.”
In response to excessive inflation, Moran mentioned the Veterans Medical Mileage Adjustment Act of 2022 would improve the reimbursement charge for the Beneficiary Travel Program for eligible veterans who’re required to travel greater than 7 miles for VA-related health care.
“For Montana veterans living in rural or remote areas, getting to a VA health care appointment can mean driving dozens of miles each way to their nearest facility,” mentioned Tester. “Increasing the mileage reimbursement rate will ensure VA benefits are keeping pace with rising transportation costs, so veterans can continue accessing their earned care—no matter where they live.”
Moran mentioned the legislation additionally has the help of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S., Disabled American Veterans and the Wounded Warrior Project.
“With gas prices in California up over two dollars in the last few years, traveling is more expensive than ever,” mentioned Congressman LaMalfa. “While some Californians try to make ends meet by cutting back on driving or other necessities, rural veterans seeking medical treatments have few options. They rely on hospitals and clinics located far from their home. We shouldn’t force our veterans to shoulder more and more of this cost because Washington has abandoned a reasonable energy policy. This legislation will increase the mileage reimbursement rate to protect our veterans from government-created inflation.”
Moran indicated that the legislation would improve the VA mileage reimbursement charge from $0.415 to $0.455 per mile. It can even assist cowl out-of-pocket costs for veterans and caregivers when scheduled health care of medical incapacity examinations require them to travel greater than 7 miles – or greater than 14 miles spherical journey.
Additionally, Moran mentioned the legislation would incorporate the findings of the annual Internal Revenue Service examine on transportation costs displaying a rise in gasoline, insurance coverage, upkeep, depreciation and different costs to reduce the burden on veterans and caregivers. It can even apply the rise to any veteran or caregiver at present eligible for the Beneficiary Travel reimbursement profit for travel that happens after the enactment of the Veterans Medical Mileage Adjustment Act of 2022.
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