Senators Ask VA for Budget Projections, Show Concern Over Shortages

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Two senators are so concerned the Veterans Affairs Department may not have the funds it needs to handle veterans’ healthcare, that they put it in writing.

Senate Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and ranking member Richard Burr (R-N.C.) sent a letter Thursday to VA Secretary Eric Shinseki, requesting the department’s budget projections for fiscal year 2012.

The senators also want the VA to assure they can deliver the needed level of healthcare.

Increased demand for healthcare, lower collection rates for the Medical Care Collections Fund, and workforce reductions have raised the senators’ concerns about the VA’s funding.

“If the estimated savings for fiscal years 2012 and 2013 do not materialize and VA receives appropriations in the amount requested by the president, VA may have to make difficult trade-offs to manage within the resources provided,” the letter says.

The senators also asked for a plan to increase MCCF collections.

Click here to read the full letter.

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