Rep. Newhouse Statement on Revision of Eligibility Rule for Veterans Choice Program

March 24, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA) released the following statement after the announcement by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that it will clarify the definition of eligibility for veterans who live 40 miles as driving distance from a VA medical facility rather than “as the crow flies.” Earlier this month, Rep. Newhouse joined colleagues in a letter to VA Secretary Robert McDonald questioning the President’s proposed cuts to the Veterans Choice Program and requesting a more realistic interpretation of the 40-mile rule.

“The Veterans Choice Program has improved healthcare access for veterans in rural communities, and I am encouraged that the Department of Veterans Affairs has responded to requests from veterans and Congress to use a common sense definition for eligibility for the program,” said Rep. Newhouse. “This change will help many veterans who have contacted my office. We owe our veterans clarity, increased choices, and better access to quality care, whether in VA or non-VA facilities.”