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Rep. Bill Foster Supports Investments To Help End VA Backlog

Jun 5, 2013
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) voted in support of H.R. 2216, the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act and to take action to reduce the backlog in VA benefits claims. 

“When I visited the Illinois VA regional claims processing center last month, it was clear that the many months delay in processing VA claims was unacceptable and needed prompt attention.  While things are moving in the right direction, the VA has suffered from a chronic lack of adequate resources to carry out their jobs,” said Foster.  

“Supporting our troops doesn’t end in the battlefield, we need to make sure they get the care and support they need when they come back home.  The backlog in veterans’ disability claims has gone on far too long – this is an important step towards ending the delay and promptly getting our veterans the benefits they have earned,” added Foster. 

The legislation will increase the number of VA claims processors, invest in the transition to digital health records, establish backlog reduction metrics for regional VA offices, and create an integrated health records system with the Department of Defense.

This legislation reaches a bipartisan compromise on funding levels and makes significant investments in fixing the veterans’ medical records and claims backlog. 

Foster also voted to further reduce the backlog by using $9.2 million in unspent construction funds to hire additional claims processors.