The President has signed into law new choices for Veterans' healthcare.  The law creates a new - and temporary - authority for VA to provide veterans with a "Veterans Choice Card" that can be used to access private care when VA is unable to provide veterans with care under defined time or distance access standards of 30 days or 40 miles. However, the law anticipates that this new authority will continue for no more than 3 years, or until the emergency funding ($10 billion) is exhausted, whichever comes first.
 
As enacted, the law did not spell out all of the details concerning when and how veterans will receive "Choice" cards, how veterans will be "authorized" by VA to access private care options, how private providers will bill VA, not veterans, or how VA will coordinate non-VA care to ensure the best health outcomes for veterans.  The law requires VA to publish detailed regulations within 90 days of enactment (November 5, 2014) and we will be carefully monitoring this process and consulting with VA through the law's implementation, especially the "Choice" provisions.

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