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VA could be getting $5 billion in legislation to upgrade facilities

The Department of Veterans Affairs could be getting upgrades to their facilities thanks to a...
The Department of Veterans Affairs could be getting upgrades to their facilities thanks to a bill that just passed through the House of Representatives.
Published: Nov. 24, 2021 at 8:36 PM CST
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TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) - The Department of Veterans Affairs could be getting upgrades to their facilities thanks to a bill that just passed through the House of Representatives.

The bill, referred to as the Build Back Better Act, will now head to the Senate where some lawmakers are optimistic about its chances.

However, some veterans remain skeptical if the bill passes. Thousands have complained about confusion and mishandling of benefits.

Army Veteran Jeremy Fay says the VA had to outsource his rehab on his shoulder to a local civilian medical clinic because they were overcrowded.

“It’s a mixed bag, to kind of put it simply,” he said.

“I was doing things I hadn’t been able to do in years. So, I wanted to continue rehabbing my shoulder. The VA dropped the ball on the paperwork. You’re just trying to figure out what form goes to what person and that’s half the battle.”

The bill would provide funding to update aging facilities, lease more medical buildings, provide hosuing for the homeless and add more medical staff.

Army Veteran and Social Worker Jeffrey Yarvis says after receiving treatment and touring multiple facilities across the country, this bill could actually prevent veterans from getting their healthcare elsewhere.

“As a result of that, I think that competition has made the VA realize they have to do things to make them choose the VA,” he said.

“So, you’re seeing a lot of efforts to recapture veterans and provide them the best possible care they can.”

Regardless of what the future of the bill holds, Yarvis says something must be done.

“For somebody that’s both a veteran and consumer of their care system, this signal’s a commitment to America’s sons and daughters,” he said.

The VA says if the bill were to pass in the Senate and signed into law, the VA says it could take from seven to ten years to complete construction.

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