AKAKA ANNOUNCES LEGISLATION TO AID SEAMLESS TRANSITION
FOR THOSE LEAVING MILITARY SERVICE
WASHINGTON, DC - Today, U.S. Senator Daniel K. Akaka (D-HI), Chairman of the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, and committee members ordered reported legislation that will complement S.1606, The Dignified Treatment of Wounded Warrior Act of 2007, recently acted on by the Armed Services Committee.
"I am pleased with the improvements in veterans' benefits and services that this year's package of legislation provides. We have worked closely with the Senate Armed Services Committee to ensure that DoD and VA work together to improve the transition process for servicemembers and veterans," stated Akaka.
The legislation will:
- Improve DoD's and VA's efforts in the treatment, rehabilitation, and reintegration of veterans with traumatic brain injury.
- Extend eligibility for VA health care for combat veterans from two to five years after service for those recently released or discharged. It is important that for veterans with combat service, there be adequate time to identify and treat the invisible wounds of the current conflicts, such as post traumatic stress disorder and TBI.
- Improve mental health screening, extend dental benefits for separating servicemembers, and take steps to improve rural veterans' access to VA health care.
- Make necessary improvements to VA's insurance programs by expanding eligibility for retroactive benefits under VA's Traumatic Servicemembers Group Life Insurance (TSGLI) Program.