BILLS THAT RECENTLY BECAME LAWS
H.R. 91- Veteran’s Identification Card (VIC) Act of 2015
What it means: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) can issue a VIC to a requesting veteran who is neither entitled to military retired pay nor enrolled in the VA system of patient enrollment. It will serve as proof that the veteran has a DD-214 form or other official documentation in his/her military personnel file describing the veteran’s military service. A card fee will be charged. The card shall not serve as proof of entitlement to any benefits.
H.R. 2496 Construction Authorization and Choice Improvement Act
Allows a veteran to access a non-VA medical facility if the veteran resides more than 40 miles from the closest VA facility or faces an unusual/excessive burden in traveling to such facility due to environmental factors, a medical condition, or other factors the Secretary determines.
H.R. 203 Clay Hunt SAV Act
Congress directs the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to carry out pilot programs and publish a regularly updated website to provide information and improve VA’s mental health care services. The Act also directs the Secretary to submit both interim and final reports to Congress on the pilot programs and to evaluate and provide recommendations on VA’s mental health care and suicide prevention programs each year.
Directs the Secretary to collaborate with nonprofit mental health organizations to prevent suicide among veterans, including training and best practices, and to select a VA Director of Suicide Prevention Coordinator to undertake this collaboration.
Extends for one year combat veterans’ eligibility for VA medical care for illness not medically proven to be attributable to their service provided they were discharged/released from active duty between January 1, 2009 and January 1, 2011.