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Perry Puts Forward Plan To Expedite Veterans Health Care, Cut Wait Times

Texas governor's office

Speaking outside the opening of a new medical center at Fort Hood, Gov. Rick Perry announced a plan that uses groups of hospitals to provide speedier medical services to military veterans who have waited months to be seen by a doctor at U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs medical clinics.   

That plan includes hospitals throughout the state willing to work with the federal government to speed up the time it takes for a veteran to be seen by a doctor.

“We’ve reached out to a number of hospitals and health care networks including Baylor Scott and White, Houston Methodist, CHRISTUS Hospital, University of North Texas Health Science Center and the University of Texas System," Perry said. "These institutions are willing to work with the VA to expand the number of treatment options for veterans waiting in line.”

Lucy Nashed with the governor’s press office said in return the VA would speed up it’s reimbursement process for these health care providers.

“So what the governor has proposed is having these health care providers bill the federal government through the Medicare system, which is something they already work with on a regular basis and then having VA and Medicare square away the bill on the back end,” Nashed said.

Nashed said this would be a temporary alternative to getting the care Texas veterans need. The plan has not yet been approved by the VA. Congress is working to find a more permanent solution to the wait times issue.