WASHINGTON, D.C. (KALB News Channel 5) – Today, U.S. Rep. Vance McAllister (R-Swartz) introduced the Rural Veteran Access to Care Act – legislation that would allow veterans of all service-connected disability levels seeking treatment from a VA medical center to be reimbursed for travel by striking the requirement that veterans be rated at 30% or more.
In Louisiana, this will open up the program to between 14,000 and 20,000 additional veterans, with those in rural areas likely to see the greatest benefit. As a whole, Louisiana has over 300,000 veterans, with 60,000 residing in the Fifth District.
McAllister issued the following statement:
“Our veterans should not avoid seeking treatment for their condition simply because they cannot afford to drive to the hospital. This legislation would make the Veterans Affairs travel benefits program available to veterans of all service-connected disability levels. It is my hope that this will encourage veterans to seek out treatment early to prevent their condition from worsening. I believe this small investment now will pay dividends in the future by keeping veterans healthy and out of our long term care facilities.”