Veteran Choice Card recent headlines and updates

A new controversy is brewing about the allocation of these choice funds since use as been light.  On the other hand, my Marine just got his card.  I think we should keep an open mind to see what Sec. McDonald has to say on this subject. It is counterproductive to have funds sitting unused that could be used to say, house more homeless veterans and their families immediately. As we know, the financial, physical and emotional crises veterans are under are significant.  On the other hand, it’s a brand new program and the roll out has been rough going for some:


Image source: American Legion Click image to read comments from frustrated veterans.

A commenter to the WSJ  and Am. Legion Hiiumaa wrote:  “I am priority 1, I live 99 miles from the VA hospital I go to,I must make my VA doctor appts 45 days in advance, I am 100% service connected, and the last day of January, I received a card ‘Choice’ in snail mail. I have made several phone calls, for hours, to the phone numbers on the brochures that came with the card and ‘they’ are STILL trying to decide if I qualify for Choice benefits. I am at a loss!  (To read more, go here.  She doesn’t have a car.)

Here are a few miscellaneous links to opinions and news from around the web:

2/2/15 Rep. Jeff Miller,  Miller Statement on The President’s VA Budget Request

2/13/15  Washington Post (blog):  Far fewer veterans use choice card and private health care than expected, VA says

2/13/15  Exeter PatchNH Reps. Work on Bi-Partisan Veterans Proposal, U.S. Reps. Ann McLane Kuster, D-NH, and Frank Guinta, R-NH, introduce legislation to stop cuts to Veterans Choice Card Program.

2/11/15  Washington Times: VA secretary: 24K vets have used Choice Card, Asks to reduce program funding

2/4/15  The Sun (CAL): Vets optimistic about new VA ‘Choice’ program

2/2/15 Wall Street Journal (blog).  Barack Obama Plan to Shift Veterans Choice Act Funds Faces Shelling on Hill

2/2/15 Military, White House plan increases VA budget


image from military flickr stream

Well, that’s all for now.  Happy Valentine’s Day! 




About Laura

NW Vermont.
This entry was posted in Guest authors, VA Health Care, VA Medical Mysteries Explained, vA news and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Veteran Choice Card recent headlines and updates

  1. Dottie Dames says:

    We had trouble getting a Nephrologist for my husband and every time I take him to the ER I put up that card. They have no idea what to do with it but they copy it and it will be familiar to them at some point I hope.

    • Kiedove says:

      Dottie, Do you get pre-approval from the VA? Does the VA set up the appointment? If it’s an emergency, you or the hospital has to call them within a few hours to notify your VHA of the emergency. If the hospital doesn’t notify them or know what to do, you may be responsible for the bill. I hope not. I would call the hospital’s Biz office too and talk to a manager about these two issues: The choice card and emergency room–the VA’s rules that government both programs.

  2. William R. Holliday says:

    News flash………the VA is putting in massive runways for veterans to fly in to ensure they meet the “40 mile radius requirement” as a crow flies!” In other words if you live “41 miles” by vehicle to the closest VA hospital or specialist, you are truly left holding the bag. You must live within the 40 mile radius to use the choice card! Now tell me, who in the world thought this would be a written requirement of the VA? No wonder Oboma wants to move 10 billion from the program………….veterans are disallowed from meeting the requirement to use the card!

  3. hepper74 says:

    I have expressed my opinion concerning the choice card program before but if you meet the requirements of distance and/or the appointment issue you can benefit from the program. BUT if you have a VA “clinic” in or near to your residence then you are basically SOL.

  4. david j murphy says:

    Amen to both the above posts.

  5. Redcloud says:

    The choice card will not be successful if the vA is in charge of it’s management. The vA must be taken out of the loop for the Choice Act to be successful.

  6. disgusted says:

    The vA is sabotaging the Choice program. They don’t want it to work. They want the money. The card is a cruel joke.

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