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Bill to Overhaul VA Disability Claims Process Closer

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Bill to Overhaul VA Disability Claims Process Closer

Last evening, Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL), a member of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, voted for S. 3023, a package of veterans bills that included legislation to overhaul the Department of Veterans' Affairs (VA) broken disability claims process. After the Senate concurs, it will head to the President's desk for his signature.

"At 800,000, the current VA disability claims backlog is a national embarrassment," Hare said. "This legislation takes major steps to reform a broken system and provide our veterans the timely care they deserve."

The Veterans Disability Benefits Claims Modernization Act would instantly pay partial claims for severely wounded veterans, completely overhaul the prehistoric ratings schedule which has contributed to the size and scope of the backlog, and repair the flawed and broken system of processing claims.

Hare successfully sought changes to the Veterans Affairs Schedule for Rating Disabilities, which was last comprehensively updated over 60 years ago. Currently, it does not coincide with the latest medical practices and guidelines, especially in the area of mental health. "We cannot adequately meet the 21st Century needs of our veterans with a World War 2 era ratings schedule," Hare said. "This update is long overdue."

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