Hillary Clinton Statement On Inadequate Care for Traumatic Brain Injuries Among Iraq War Vets
Hillary Clinton issued the following statement today, responding to a troubling Veterans Administration investigation that found Iraq War veterans suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) are not getting the adequate health care and assistance they need.
"Our brave young men and women in uniform risk their lives to protect this country, and yet the response to TBI - which has been called the signature injury of the Iraq war - has been virtually invisible. This is truly a dereliction of duty. "
"When our young men and women sign up to serve our country, we sign up to serve them. We need a President who will stand up for our servicemembers and veterans.
"In the Senate, I have been working to ensure that all of our wounded servicemembers and veterans receive the health care and the assistance that they need and deserve. I have passed legislation to require the Department of Defense to implement a screening protocol for Traumatic Brain Injury within 180 days, to require research on servicemembers with TBI to monitor for signs of Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegeneration, and to improve the transition from DoD to VA care to prevent wounded servicemembers, including those with TBI, from getting caught in bureaucracy and red tape. And along with Senator Bayh, I have introduced the TBI Access to Options Act, which calls for a one-year medical extension to allow soldiers suffering from TBI to retain active duty status, which provides them increased access to cognitive rehabilitation therapy."
"When I am President, I will build on my Senate work to ensure that we provide nothing but the best for those who have risked their lives for us. I will hold the VA accountable for ensuring that we are doing right by our veterans with TBI. As President, I will ensure that all veterans have access to quality, affordable health care and mental health care and that we fully fund the VA so that it has the capacity to avoid backlogs and to handle greater enrollments. I will work to provide fast-track training for new claims specialists and expand the Benefits Delivery at Discharge Program to smooth the transition from service to discharge. And I will enact the GI Bill of Rights for the 21st Century to offer servicemembers, veterans, and their families expanded education, housing, and entrepreneurial benefits. Our servicemembers and veterans deserve a President who will support them both on the battlefield and when they return home. I will be that President."