Your daily veterans news update for Wednesday, August 13:
Georgia VA hospital closes contracts, stranding vets without needed care (Washington Times)
Rather than go through a time-consuming evaluation process, a Veterans Affairs center in Georgia decided to simply close all of its consulting contracts en masse, leaving veterans without access to many specialized doctors and health care workers, a watchdog report found.
Congressman takes VA oversight on the road (Military.com)
Unlike many lawmakers on Capitol Hill, the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee did not use the August recess to go home. Instead Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Florida, who has earned a reputation as a dogged advocate for veterans since assuming leadership of the committee in 2011, has hit the road to hold field hearings, meet with veterans and visit Department of Veterans Affairs’ hospitals across the country.
Program for homeless veterans gets $300 million infusion (USA Today)
The VA has spread $300 million among 301 community groups in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands to help keep struggling veterans their families off the streets. During its first two years of operation, 2012-2013, the program — known as Supportive Services for Veteran Families — helped nearly 100,000 veterans and their family members find temporary housing or meet expenses to stay in their homes.
New idea for VA facility has educational focus (Associated Press)
A proposal to save the historic Veterans Affairs hospital in Hot Springs includes adding a medical college, and medical research and treatment using stem cells. The three-pronged approach is being broached by the Veterans National Recovery Center of Des Moines, Iowa. Officials will submit the plan to Veterans Affairs as the federal agency determines the future of the century-old South Dakota facility.