Providers support House push to expand veterans' healthcare options

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AHCA/NCAL President and CEO Mark Parkinson
AHCA/NCAL President and CEO Mark Parkinson

Providers recently applauded a large bipartisan effort to expand veteran's healthcare options for long-term and post-acute care.

On Friday, more than 100 House members sent a letter to the Department of Veteran Affairs as a plea to release the final Provider Agreement rule, which would allow veterans to receive extended care services from local providers.

“The proposed rule was released well over a year ago on February 13, 2013, and expanding veteran access to extended care services from local providers could not come at a better time,” the letter stated. “Veterans who need these extended care services deserve access to this critical care.” Representatives Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) and Jackie Walorski (R-IN) led the House effort.

Under the VA agreement, extended care services would include: nursing center care, geriatric evaluation, domiciliary services, adult day healthcare, respite care, palliative care, hospice care and home care.

Forty-one senators also sent a similar letter to the VA in June, requesting the final rule's release.

“Members of the House and Senate have spoken,” said Mark Parkinson, President and CEO of the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living. “America's veterans should be able to access the healthcare they need regardless of where they live.”

ACHA supported the proposed rule released in 2013 and also collaborated with the VA to develop it.

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