On Saturday, Donald Trump revealed his plan to fix the much-maligned Veterans Affairs health system.
Speaking at a rally in Norfolk, Va. In front of the USS Wisconsin, Trump said, “We’re going to take care of those wounded warriors and we’re going to take care of our vets better than anybody. The plan will ensure our veterans get the care they need, wherever and whenever they need it.”
Trump insisted that he would not jettison the present system but reform it instead, saying, “I don’t want to get rid of it, I want to supplement it.” Yet he said he would fire “the corrupt and incompetent VA executives who let our veterans down,” adding that he would amend the current system to more appropriately address the needs of younger veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The 2016 candidate also criticized the VA for its lack of obstetric help for women, asserting, “The fact that many VA hospitals don’t permanently staff OB-GYN doctors shows an utter lack of respect for the growing number of female veterans.”
Trump added, “We’re going to replace them with more effective ones to get our veterans working, which is what they want to do. We’re going to transform the VA to meet the needs of the current veterans. Exposing and addressing the VA’s inefficiencies and shortcomings will be rewarded, not punished. We’re going to find out why it’s going bad and we’re going to fix it.”
Trump released a plan on Saturday detailing how he would change the current VA system. Some of its specifics included:
- All veterans eligible for VA health care would be able to bring their veteran’s ID card to any doctor or care facility that accepts Medicare to get the care they need immediately.
- Funding would be increased for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury and suicide prevention services.
- Funding would be increased for job training and placement services, educational support and business loans.
- Equipping every VA hospital in the country with OBGYN and other women’s health services, while permitting women veterans to choose a different OBGYN in their community using their veteran’s ID card.
- Firing the corrupt and incompetent VA executives.
- Accelerating and expanding investments in state of the art technology to deliver best-in-class care quickly and effectively.
- Hiring more veterans to care for veterans.
- Embedding satellite VA clinics in rural and other underserved areas to ensure veterans have easy access to care.