Tuesday, December 19, 2017

U.S. House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Approves Legislation Including VA Provider Agreements

Dana Halvorson

On December 19, 2017, the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Veterans’ Affairs considered and approved legislation by a vote of 14-9 entitled the VA Care in the Community Act (H.R. 4242). This legislation establishes a veterans community care program, and ensures that extended care providers, including nursing centers, can legally enter into VA Provider Agreements. As noted in previous AHCA communications, the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs marked up their version of the legislation last month entitled Caring for our Veterans Act of 2017.     

As you may know, AHCA endorses legislation introduced earlier this year entitled, the Veterans Access to Long Term Care and Health Services Act (S. 1611/H.R. 4113). This legislation, introduced by Senators John Hoeven (R-ND) and Mike Rounds (R-SD) and by Congressman Bruce Poliquin (R-ME-02), would ensure that extended care providers, including nursing centers, can legally enter into VA Provider Agreements, and would be subject to the same rules and regulations as any other Medicare or Medicaid provider.  Under S. 1611/H.R. 4113, the number of facilities serving veterans will increase in most markets once qualified providers are able to enter into VA Provider Agreements, broadening options among veterans for nursing center care and home and community-based services. Both the U.S. Senate and House Committees on Veterans Affairs approved legislation noted above includes some, but not all, of the provisions from the Veterans Access to Long Term Care and Health Services Act.

AHCA will keep its members apprised of next steps as work continues on the Hill efforts around VA Provider Agreements. If you have any questions, please contact AHCA’s Senior Director of Not for Profit & Constituent Services, Dana Halvorson

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