President Signs Legislation For Vet Medical Benefits
President Bush recently signed legislation that adds $1.4 billion to expand and strengthen health care programs for the nation's 25 million veterans. The new law, H.R. 3447, will allow the VA will lower co-payments for hospital inpatient care by 80 percent for veterans meeting a new regional means test. This could translate into an out-of-pocket savings of over $600 for each hospitalization. Other improvements include a trained service dog program for disabled veterans; a National Commission to enhance recruitment and retention of nurses at VA facilities; establishing chiropractic services within the VA health care system on a nationwide basis; and specialized medical programs (i.e. for mental illness, spinal cord injuries and prosthetics) in each of the VA's 22 health care networks.