Boozman leads drive to assess VA resources in underserved areas – SWARK Today
The addition of veterinary centers in Arkansas could improve care for veterans
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Tina Smith (D-MN) are leading bipartisan legislation to investigate the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) resources in underserved areas and investigate the need for Vet Center, the community-based advisory department, to expand the VA.
The senators provided them Law in support of veterinary centersLegislation directing the VA to assess its ability to provide the full range of mental health and counseling services, identify barriers to building new veterinary centers in underserved areas, and analyze staff shortages. Additionally, the legislation assesses the effectiveness of veterans in reaching veterans and directs the VA to identify gaps in public relations resources by examining states with a ratio of only one veterans center per 100,000 veterans, such as Arkansas and Minnesota.
Arkansas’s two veterinary centers are responsible for serving a veteran population of more than 200,000. the Law in support of veterinary centers would correct these injustices and find solutions to improve the provision of mental health care and counseling services to our veterans, soldiers and their families who are most needed.
âVeterinary centers have proven to be a vital part of providing mental health services to our veterans. Arkansas veterans should have reasonable access to these services, and I am concerned that the two centers in our state are overwhelmed with the number of veterans they support. the Law in support of veterinary centers will review and ensure that the Vet Centers have the resources to provide care and service so that we can continue our commitment to those who serve in our nation’s uniform, ” said Boozman, a member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee.
“We know that so many Americans, including many veterans, often struggle with mental health problems.” called Blacksmith. “Our Veterinary Center Support Act ensures that veterans, service members, and their families receive the vital mental health and counseling services they need.”
The legislation is supported by the National Association of County Veterans Service Officers (NACVSO) and the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).
âVeterinary centers are an important resource for service members, veterans, and their families. For 42 years, they have provided a range of services including one-on-one and family counseling, performance statements, substance abuse assessment and referral, and more. These centers operate without an appropriate staffing model to care for an increasingly elected group of service members, veterans and their families. The VFW emphatically supports the Law in support of veterinary centersfor which VA would be required to evaluate the mental health services provided by Vet Centers. Understanding who is using these facilities and why will help coordinate the appropriate staff, resources and funding to continue or create beneficial programs and services for those who are entitled. ” said Tammy Barlet, associate legislative director of VFW.
The bipartisan legislation is also supported by Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tim Kaine (D-VA). Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives and is endorsed by Arkansas Congressmen Steve Womack and Bruce Westerman.
Click here for the full text of the Law in support of veterinary centers.