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Congressman Young Speaks to Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Roundtable

Washington, DC - Congressman for All Alaska Don Young issued the following statement Jan. 27 following a Veterans' Affairs Roundtable:  "Meeting the Unique Health Care Needs of Rural Veterans."  This roundtable discussed many critically important issues that veterans in rural areas face, such as difficulties with the reimbursement process, the use of telemedicine and the need for improved outreach to better inform rural veterans.  Congressman Young spoke at length about the needs of Alaskan Veterans.

Concerns for Alaskan Veterans:
"We need to find a way for our rural vets to use local facilities, rather than having them fly 500 to 600 miles only to be referred another 2,000 miles for treatment.  The V.A. needs to work with existing local clinics instead of making rural Alaskan Veterans go to Anchorage or Seattle."

Rural Veteran Outreach:
"There is a lack of knowledge by our rural veterans of what their benefits are.  The V.A. must improve its education and outreach programs to inform veterans about their benefits.  Many of our National Guard members who have been deployed come from rural communities.  These brave men and women have honorably served their country; now it's our time to serve them.  Let's get this done!"

The Veterans' Affairs Roundtable was attended by Members of the Veterans' Affairs Committee, and other Representatives of rural communities.  The Panel consisted of staff from the Veterans' Administration, the Indian Health Service and a number of representatives from different veterans groups.

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