Margaret Wood Hassan

07/12/2018 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/12/2018 16:40

Senator Hassan Statement on Meeting with VA Secretary Nominee Robert Wilkie

July 12, 2018

WASHINGTON - Senator Maggie Hassan issued the following statement today after meeting with President Trump's nominee to serve as Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA):

'I appreciated the opportunity to meet with Mr. Wilkie, and am encouraged by our discussion about his commitment to the health and well-being of our veterans. During our meeting, I raised the ongoing challenges New Hampshire veterans have faced with the VA, and look forward to working with Mr. Wilkie, if confirmed, to ensure that our veterans can get the care they need and have earned. I was particularly pleased to hear Mr. Wilkie's commitment to implementing the bipartisan VA MISSION Act that I voted to approve, as well as addressing issues with the Veterans Choice program and community-based care that our veterans face. Mr. Wilkie also emphasized the importance of ensuring that veterans have access to quality education and the necessary resources to reenter the workforce and civilian life after their service, and he committed to reviewing the bipartisan bill I introduced with Senator Rubio to prioritize veterans employment and education programs at the VA. I will continue to review Mr. Wilkie's record and I urge the full Senate to take up his nomination without delay.'

Senator Hassan recently voted to pass the bipartisan VA MISSION Act, which has now been signed into law and works to strengthen health care within the VA system, while also recognizing the importance of community-based care. This bill provides expanded community-care options for all New Hampshire veterans; addresses issues with the VA Choice Program; expands VA caregiver programs to all veterans, regardless of when they served; works to prevent substance misuse among veterans; removes barriers for veterans to access telehealth care; and helps address the VA's workforce challenges.

Additionally, Senator Hassan recently introduced a bipartisan bill with Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) that would prioritize veteran employment and education programs at the VA.

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