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Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs

News Releases

Graphic saying New MESSAGE FROM THE SECRETARY - Memorial Day 2015 - Many have heard the saying, "Poor is the Nation that has no heroes, but beggared is the Nation that has and forgets them." On this Memorial Day, let us pause to remember those who gave the last full measure of devotion for our Nation. Let us remember the special nobility and grace of those who donned the uniforms of our country and sacrificed their lives during times of conflict. Let us remember—as we renew our commitment to honor those we have lost—that, every day, dedicated men and women put their lives on the line to protect all of us. We owe them all our deepest gratitude.  (5/22/15)

Graphic saying New Statement from Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald on Aurora VA Hospital - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald made the following statement regarding the apparent compromise legislation moving through Congress that would prevent a shutdown of the construction of the Denver Replacement Medical Center in Aurora, Colorado (5/21/15)

Graphic saying New Statement from Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald - Statement from Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald (5/20/15)

Graphic saying New VA Launches Campaign to Increase Veterans’ Economic Potential - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald, with leaders from national and local Veterans service organizations, corporate employers and government agencies, announced the launch of the Veterans Economic Communities Initiative, an effort focused in a total of 50 U.S. cities to promote economic success for Veterans.  (5/18/15)

Graphic saying New VA Launches Innovation Creation Series to Improve Quality of Life for Veterans - Can you imagine losing the ability to use everyday objects like your phone, typing on a computer or even enjoying a beloved hobby like photography? These are a just a few of the challenges that Veterans and civilians with disabilities such as amputations and tremors face every day – and these are the challenges the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) wants to help solve. Through the launch of VA’s Innovation Creation Series for Prosthetics and Assistive Technologies, VA invites all designers, engineers, and problem solvers alike, to help us find creative ways to solve these challenges.  (5/15/15)

Graphic saying New VA Secretary Waives Resident-Rate Requirements of the Choice Act through December, 2015 - In order to make it easier for Veterans and their families to receive their GI Bill benefits where they choose, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs has used his authority to waive the provisions of Section 702 of the Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014 (Choice Act). This action will ensure all GI Bill® students are able to continue training at their chosen institutions. Under Section 702, VA must disapprove education programs at public institutions for Post-9/11 GI Bill and Montgomery GI Bill-Active Duty (MGIB-AD) benefits if a school charges certain individuals tuition and fees in excess of the resident rate for terms beginning after July 1, 2015.  (5/15/15)

May is Mental Health Awareness Month - May is Mental Health Awareness Month. To commemorate the month, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is encouraging Veterans, along with their families and friends, to visit and view recovery journey stories on the website, (5/7/15)

VA Research Commemorates 90 Years of Health Care Innovation Focused on Improving Veterans’ Lives - The Department of Veterans Affairs will highlight 90 years of improving the lives of Veterans and other Americans through medical and prosthetics research when it celebrates National VA Research Week May 18–22, 2015, at host medical facilities across the United States and its territories. (4/30/15)

Online Course Helps Healthcare Professionals Better Serve Veterans and Servicemembers - The departments of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Defense (DoD) have announced the launch of an online continuing education course aimed at helping health care professionals better treat Veterans and Servicemembers. (4/27/15)

VA Expands Choice Program Eligibility, Effective Immediately - In order to expand eligibility for the Veterans Choice Program, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced that it will determine eligibility for the Veterans Choice Program based on the distance between a Veteran’s place of residence and the nearest VA medical facility using driving distance rather than straight-line distance. This change has been published in the Federal Register and is effective immediately. (4/24/15)

Group of Respected Medical Experts to Advise VA on Health Care for 9 Million Veterans - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced a new 11-member Special Medical Advisory Group (SMAG) composed of leading medical experts to assist the Department in delivering health care to the 9 million Veterans enrolled in the Veterans Health Administration. (4/24/15)

VA Extends Program for Veterans with Traumatic Brain Injury - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced the award of 20 contracts for the Assisted Living Pilot Program for Veterans with Traumatic Brain Injury (AL-TBI). Originally slated to end in 2014, the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 (“VACAA”) extended this program through October 2017. (4/13/15)

New Members Appointed to VA Advisory Committee on Women Veterans - Four new members have been appointed to the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Advisory Committee on Women Veterans, an expert panel that advises the Secretary on issues and programs affecting women Veterans. Established in 1983, the Committee makes recommendations to the Secretary for administrative and legislative changes.  (4/2/15)

VA Announces New Grants to Help End Veteran Homelessness - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald today announced the award of nearly $93 million in Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) 3-year grants that will help approximately 45,000 homeless and at-risk Veterans and their families. The grants will be distributed to 24 non-profit agencies in 15 communities, with $30 million in awards being distributed to the Los Angeles area.  (3/31/15)

VA Makes Gains in Faster Disability Claims Processing - The federal initiative to provide timely decisions on disability payments to Veterans has crossed a major milestone in its final sprint to eliminate the backlog of Veterans’ benefits claims.  (3/30/15)

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