Protect the Veteran’s Health Administration

The Veteran’s Health Administration (the VA), which provides comprehensive and specialized care to Veterans, is a model socialized health system. With 1700 hospitals and a large federal budget, it is also a target for right wing anti-government entities like the Koch brothers and privatizers who would like a piece of the action. Privatization undermines the VA system.

Currently, there is legislation in Congress, the VA Mission Act of 2018, that would further privatize the VA and provide a mechanism to close VA hospitals. Sadly, there is a push to pass the legislation by Memorial Day.

As supporters of single payer health care, we also need to protect our public health systems. Please take action to save the VA.

1. You can download the fact sheet and flyers below to share with others in your community.

Read about the VA Mission Act of 2018 here: VA Mission Act Fact Sheet

Read more about the VA Mission Act of 2018 here (includes a phone number to call Congress and a sample script): Future of the VA flyer_May14

Read more about privatization of the VA here: Privatize Healthcare Suzanne Gordon Final

2. Here are sample letters that you can copy and paste to send/email to your members of Congress:

For veterans –

Dear…

I am a veteran writing you about The VA Mission Act of 2018 (H.R.5674).  I urge you to vote against this bill in its current form. While there are, and have always been, instances in which purchasing health care in the community is necessary, the bill contains four different provisions that each would lead to the dismantling and privatization of the Veterans Health Administration.  These include:

  • The problematic use of Walk In Clinics for on-going care,
  • The creation of a Commission run by private sector health care executives that will close local VAs
  • The immediate issuing of vouchers to tens of thousands of veterans that will allow them to automatically obtain private care. This in spite of the fact that studies document that private sector providers are not ready and able to serve veterans’ complex needs.
  • The implementation of a pilot program that would turn the VA into an insurer rather than provider of care.
  • Finally but most importantly, the near $60 billion price tag would be siphoned from other benefits to veterans.

Surveys show that veterans like myself want the VHA to be strengthened and improved not dismantled.  Rather than voting for a bill that would lead to the dismantling of the VHA, as a veteran, I am asking you to vote against this bill and do what is needed to fully fund, improve, and staff the Veterans Health Administration.

Sincerely,

 

For non-veterans –

Dear…

I am a concerned citizen writing you about The VA Mission Act of 2018 (H.R.5674).  I urge you to vote against this bill in its current form. While there are, and have always been, instances in which purchasing health care in the community is necessary, the bill contains four different provisions that each would lead to the dismantling and privatization of the Veterans Health Administration.  These include:

  • The problematic use of Walk In Clinics for on-going care,
  • The creation of a Commission run by private sector health care executives that will close local VAs
  • The immediate issuing of vouchers to tens of thousands of veterans that will allow them to automatically obtain private care. This in spite of the fact that studies document that private sector providers are not ready and able to serve veterans’ complex needs.
  • The implementation of a pilot program that would turn the VA into an insurer rather than provider of care.
  • Finally but most importantly, the near $60 billion price tag would be siphoned from other benefits to veterans.

Surveys show that veterans like myself want the VHA to be strengthened and improved not dismantled.  Rather than voting for a bill that would lead to the dismantling of the VHA, as a veteran, I am asking you to vote against this bill and do what is needed to fully fund, improve, and staff the Veterans Health Administration.

Sincerely,