Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Disabled veterans shocked by Obama plan to push them into private insurers for their needed care

Veterans and their advocacy groups are outraged over President Obama's intention to push their treatment and its costs under private insurers, breaking a long-held promise that our government would always stand behind those who had served.

For all of us who have dealt with private insurers, the hassle is incredibly frustrating. Debates over what is covered and what is not are endless.

Our veterans, particularly those wounded in battle, should certainly be held above that demeaning fray. We owe that to them at the very least.

Here is how McClatchy Newspapers reported the growing controversy:

Veterans claim that the costs of treating expensive war injuries could raise their insurance costs, as well as those for their employers. Some worried that it also could make it more difficult for disabled veterans to find work.

The leaders of several veterans groups had written Obama last month complaining about the new plan. “There is simply no logical explanation for billing a veteran’s personal insurance for care that the VA has a responsibility to provide,” they wrote.

Many veterans had high expectations for Obama after years of battling the Bush administration over benefit cuts and medical concerns such as post-traumatic stress disorder.

But the VA’s decision to float a potential change in its policy of paying for service-related injuries could signal a quick end to the honeymoon.

“It’s a betrayal,” said Joe Violante, legislative director of Disabled American Veterans, which signed the letter to Obama.

“My insurance company didn’t send me to Vietnam, my government did. The same holds true for men and women now fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s the government’s responsibility.”


NitWit1 said...

As the wife of an 100% service connected compensation veteran, this is abominable. My husband's injuries are not directly combat related but related to missions that practiced for combat during the Vietnam war. He volunteered for Vietnam but was never selected.

All veteran and veteran related organizations need to begin to use their considerable influence to negate impementation of this policy.

Anonymous said...

I am a disabled vet with 100% disability. What am I going to do because I have not worked in over six years because of my service connected disabities. Does that mean I can't get my health care at VA anymore, because I don't have any private insurance at all. Those of you who voted for that Obamantion, are to blame for this and all of you were warned about him long before he was even nominated. Thanks to all you liberal vets and liberal civilains we are screwed!! You people never learn!! Thanks alot for helping to screw me and other like minded disabled veterans!!!