World War II Veteran Honored with Trip to Nation’s Capital
In honor of Veterans Day, the American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) recognized the Oregon Veterans’ Home for their contributions to enhancing the lives of veterans in Oregon. The facility recently participated in the Journey of Heroes program, which honors World War II veterans with a number of special activities. Read more in our recent press release.
Final Rules Published on Hiring Disabled Workers and Veterans
On Sept. 24, 2013, the US Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs published final rules in the Federal Register that will go into effect on March 24, 2014, and establish targets for the hiring of qualified veterans by entities contracting with the federal government. Contractors must maintain several quantitative measurements and comparisons for the number of veterans and individuals with disabilities who apply for jobs and the number actually hired.
Disabled American Veterans National Convention
On August 10, 2013 the President and First Lady spoke at the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) National Convention in Orlando, FL. Founded in September of 1920, the DAV celebrated 92 years of service to disabled veterans and their families with this three-day event. According to the White House Blog, the President focused on five key priorities: resources for aiding America's veterans must continue to remain available, health care for veterans must be robust and easily accessible, the backlog must be eliminated, the campaign to end veteran homelessness must continue, and veterans must be provided with every opportunity to achieve success, in the workplace and in the classroom. You may watch the President's speech here.
Veterans and the Affordable Care Act
If you are enrolled in VA health care, you do not need to take additional steps to meet the health care law coverage standards. The health care law does not change VA health benefits or Veterans' out-of pocket costs. If Veterans have questions regarding the health care law and their VA health care, they may contact 1-877-222-VETS (8387) or visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website.
President’s 2014 Budget Request
On April 10, 2013, President Obama released his FY 2014 budget request. By law, the President is supposed to send the budget to Congress no later than the first Monday in February. However, the Administration delayed the release of the FY 2014 budget because of the uncertainty surrounding the final FY 2013 spending bills and the impact of sequestration. The Budget Message of the President, information on the President’s priorities, budget overviews organized by agency (including the Department of Veterans Affairs), and summary tables can be found here
. The VA 2014 Budget request for 2014 is $152.7 billion. This includes $66.5 billion in discretionary resources and $86.1 billion in mandatory funding. AHCA/NCAL issued a statement
from President and CEO Mark Parkinson in response to the President’s FY 2014 budget proposal.
AHCA Comments on VA Proposed Rule on Provider Agreements
The proposed rule, the Use of Medicare Procedures To Enter Into Provider Agreements for Extended Care Services, was published in the Federal Register in February 2013. This proposed rule would amend the medical regulations of the VA Department to allow the VA to use Medicare or State procedures to enter into provider agreements to obtain extended care services from non-VA providers. The VA would be able to obtain extended care services for veterans from providers who are closer to veterans’ homes and communities.
The VA worked closely with AHCA throughout the years on this, and AHCA submitted a letter in support of the proposed rule in March 2013. The feedback received from AHCA members was incorporated into the letter.