Today, further illustrating his commitment to veterans and military caregivers, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-14) voted in favor of the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act. The bill passed by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 419-0.
"Our veterans have shown tremendous bravery and courage defending our country, and it is important that we not only provide them with the medical care and support they deserve, but that we support their caregivers and family members as well," said Foster. "Many wounded veterans have family members who have left jobs to take care of them full-time, and this legislation provides caregiver support services to ensure our wounded veterans are getting proper care."
S. 1963, the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act, will provide support to family and others who care for disabled, ill or injured veterans; will enhance health services for the 1.8 million women veterans -- including care for newborns for the 1st time in history; will expand mental health services for veterans and health care access for veterans in rural areas; and will prohibit co-payments for veterans who are catastrophically disabled.
To help meet the many hardships and sacrifices associated with lengthy recovery and rehabilitation from severe injuries of veterans, the bill would provide support services to family and other caregivers of veterans, including education on how to be a better caregiver, counseling and mental health services, and respite care for family and other caregivers of all veterans. It also provides health care and a stipend for caregivers living with severely wounded veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan.
This bill is supported by the American Legion, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans, AMVETS, Paralyzed Veterans of America, Wounded Warrior Project and the National Military Family Association.