Healthcare Cuts Not Slated for VA Programs

Funding for veterans’ health care and other benefits will not be subject to automatic cuts of sequestration, according to a Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) news release.

The announcement came April 23 from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

"As I explained during my annual testimony in March before the House and Senate VA (Veterans Affairs) committees, sequestration would have had drastic consequences for VA at a time when we already know it is struggling to meet staffing requirements, particularly in the spinal cord injury service," said Bill Lawson, national president of PVA.

The confusion regarding the sequestration stemmed from legal ambiguity created by the 2011 Budget Control Act. Under the legislation, VA could face up to a 2-percent cut in spending, particularly for its healthcare programs.

PVA joined with AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans and Veterans of Foreign Wars as well as members of Congress to call for clarification.

Bipartisan legislation introduced in the House and Senate—H.R. 3895 and S. 2128—seeks to remove the legal ambiguity.