WASHINGTON, DC — Following efforts by U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has announced that it has taken steps to comply with the Emergency Care Fairness Act (ECFA). The ECFA was enacted into law in 2010 and directs the VA to cover veterans with private health insurance when their insurance doesn’t cover the full amount of emergency care. The VA had not complied with the law since 2010, denying hundreds of thousands of veterans’ reimbursement claims for emergency care. In December, Klobuchar and Senator Mike Rounds (R-SD) led a bipartisan group of 22 senators in urging former VA Secretary Robert McDonald to comply with the ECFA.
“Our veterans—many of whom are elderly and live on fixed incomes—have been waiting far too long to be reimbursed for their emergency care bills,” Klobuchar said. “I’m glad the Department of Veterans Affairs will begin to right this wrong and help our veterans who have been burdened with high medical bills. We should do no less for the men and women in our Armed Forces who have made so many sacrifices for our country.”
Klobuchar has worked in a bipartisan manner to modernize G.I. Bill benefits for our troops and to strengthen funding for veterans’ health care. She has also authored bipartisan bills on behalf of our nation’s veterans and their families to help veterans exposed to toxic burn pits, expand job training and employment opportunities, cut red tape and wait times for veterans scheduling appointments at VA Medical Facilities, and to reduce veterans’ homelessness.