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This group is for anyone who has served, has a loved one serving or just repects our brave men and women in uniform.www.aarp.org/community/groups/forums/createReplyForm.bt?groupId=85&parentId=3262422&topicId=3262422&lastPage=true#reply"> Post to Topic Print Big pay boost sought for badly injured vets
Big pay boost sought for badly injured vets
Severely disabled veterans who need virtually full-time assistance
carrying out routine tasks such as bathing, dressing and eating would
receive up to $1,410 more a month under a bipartisan bill introduced
July 30 by members of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee.
Under the bill, 100 percent disabled veterans qualifying for the highest
rate of special compensation because they need aid and attendance would
receive up to $8,642 a month.
The bill, HR 3407, has three other key provisions:
* Some eligibility restrictions on the highest levels of aid and
attendance allowances would be relaxed so that veterans suffering from
traumatic brain injuries would receive payments now limited to those who
have lost limbs.
* Medal of Honor recipients would receive $2,000 in monthly special
compensation, twice the current rate.
* Veterans with severe burns would be eligible for adaptive vehicle
grants, something not currently covered for those with burn injuries.
Three key lawmakers - two Republicans and one Democrat - are sponsoring
the bill that they are calling the Severely Injured Veterans' Benefits
Improvement Act. The Republicans are Reps. Steve Buyer of Indiana and
Henry Brown Jr. of South Carolina. Buyer is the senior Republican on the
house Veterans' Affairs Committee, and Brown is ranking Republican on
that committee's health panel.
The Democratic co-sponsor is Rep. Michael Michaud of Maine, chairman of
the health panel.
The main obstacle to increasing veterans benefits has been finding a way
to pay for it. But aides to Buyer said the cost of this proposal is
fully covered by extending expiring provisions that ensure Medicare
reimburses the Veterans Affairs Department for some medical treatments
of nonservice-connected injuries.
"This is fully paid for," Buyer spokesman Brian Lawrence said.
The big increases come as a result of doubling aid and attendance
benefits for catastrophically injured veterans, who would receive either
$7,552 a month or $8,642 a month in total disability compensation and
special compensation. The payment level depends on the level of
assistance needed to carry out daily activities.
Michaud said the bill is a response to testimony from some veterans
groups that the needs of severely injured veterans are not being met by
"That is unacceptable," he said.
Buyer said some veterans with severe traumatic brain injuries need
constant supervision and help, just like veterans who are paralyzed or
have lost multiple limbs.
Current policies that deny them higher rates of aid and attendance
payments end up pushing veterans with TBI into residential care
programs, when they could stay at home if there were enough money to
cover the assistance they need, Michaud said.
"Obviously, this would lead to a better quality of life for those who
suffer from this life-altering trauma."
GOOD INFORMATION, THANK YOU FOR POSTING IT.