Again Calls On VA To Set Higher Standard For Claims Processing
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA-14) issued the following statement honoring America’s veterans ahead of Veterans Day weekend:
“On behalf of the 14th Congressional District, I thank our veterans in Georgia and across America. In serving our country, veterans and their families entered a life full of challenge and sacrifice. They ensured that the torch of freedom would be passed from each generation to the next. They are our heroes.
“While our country is sincere in its gratitude, it’s important to acknowledge, once again, that our words must be backed up with action on fixing the veterans benefits system. This week, the Veterans Affairs Department cited progress on the infamous claims backlog, but I still believe our veterans deserve better.
“Hearing all the talk of ‘tech surges’ these days, I’m dismayed that the digital cavalry hasn’t been called in to aid and improve VA claims processing. With the major increases in VA spending since 2009, we know the problem isn’t a budget issue—it’s a bureaucracy issue. Our government needs to set the bar sky high and think bigger. Enlist the brightest minds and best systems, then throw the current claims processing goal of four months out the window and aim for 30 days, or even four days.
“Our servicemembers set the standard for honor and excellence, and they should be met upon retirement by a nation eager to respond in kind.”
Rep. Graves is a cosponsor of the Veterans Timely Access To Health Care Act (H.R. 241), which would ensure that veterans seeking primary or specialty care with a VA medical center receive an appointment no later than 30 days from their initial request.
On October 28, 2013, Rep. Graves voted for and the House passed H.R. 2189, a bill to establish a VA task force to evaluate and analyze the disability claims backlog and related regulations, processes and laws, and submit recommendations for solving the backlog.