With more than 1.6 million veterans, Texas has more veterans than any other state in America. Due to major backlogs in claims, tens of thousands of these patriotic men and women are making due without the help they need and deserve. Congressman John Carter (R-TX31) is working on the Department of Veterans Affairs backlog problem in Central Texas that has a debilitating effect on the system and is causing our veterans to go without.
The Waco Regional Office, which administers VA benefits for 164 counties, including Bell and Williamson, through the Olin E. Teague Veterans Medical Center, serves a veteran population of approximately 920,000 veterans. The average claim processing time at the Waco Regional Office is 439 days.
"The backlog within the VA system is unacceptable. Our veterans gave their commitment to this country when they took the oath to join the military. We have failed to reciprocate that commitment by making it nearly impossible for many of them to get the help, medicine, appointments, benefits and services they need," said Chairman Carter.
Congressman Carter, Vice-Chairman on the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Subcommittee and Co-Chairman of the House Army Caucus, has been actively investigating the backlog problem locally and has found the following results:
VA WACO REGIONAL OFFICE
July 2012- Claim workload = 51,875
Backlogged claims = 40,365 (pending more than 125 days)
Proportion backlogged = 77.8%
3-month rolling accuracy rating = 78.7%
May 2013 -- Claim workload = 43,104
Backlogged claims = 32,603 (pending more than 125 days)
Proportion backlogged = 75.6%
3-month rolling accuracy rating = 88.9%
Chairman Carter will continue his work and investigations into the VA backlog and is teaming up with other fellow Texas Congressmen.
"There is clearly a problem but I believe there is room for improvement. Continued congressional interaction can lead to even more improvements in the future. I will continue to press the VA to find a solution to the backlog problem," said Chairman Carter. "Many people living in my district are veterans who served their country with honor and respect. It is time for our government to step up to make this system work better, quicker and smoother for them."
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