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Gus Bilirakis Continues Push to Expand VA’s Dental Service for Veterans

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Last week, U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., brought back his “Veterans Early Treatment for Chronic Ailment Resurgence through Examinations (VET CARE) Act.”

In recent years, Bilirakis has been championing the bill to require the Veterans Administration (VA) to put in place a four-year pilot program providing dental care for veterans with certain chronic health conditions” since currently “dental care through the VA is limited to those who are 100 percent disabled or have a direct service-connected injury.”

“Our veterans have sacrificed so much on behalf of our country; they deserve access to high quality healthcare – and that includes dental care,” said Bilirakis.”The VET CARE Act will get the ball rolling to expand access to dental care for our nation’s heroes, and could result in lower overall health care costs for the VA. Not only is this legislation good for Veterans, it is good for the VA as a whole.”

U.S. Rep. Mike Levin, D-Calif., is the main co-sponsor.

“Our veterans deserve high-quality, comprehensive health care services, and that should include dental care regardless of service connection. This bill empowers VA to meet veterans’ dental care needs while driving down overall health care costs in the long run,” said Levin. “I’m proud to reintroduce the VET CARE Act with Rep. Bilirakis and look forward to it moving forward in the legislative process. We must continue to strengthen health care delivery for veterans, and this bill adds an element that is usually forgotten about in that process.”

U.S. Rep. Mike Waltz, R-Fla., is also co-sponsoring the bill.

The bill was sent to the U.S. House Veterans Affairs Committee. So far, there is no companion measure over in the U.S. Senate.

Author

  • Kevin Derby

    Originally from Jacksonville, Kevin Derby is a contributing writer for Florida Daily and covers politics across Florida.

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