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VFW Statement Regarding VA ‘Crow Flies’ Rule Change

Announcement was exactly what VFW wanted to hear

WASHINGTON — Today the Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it will change the calculation measurement from geodesic straight line to actual driving distances to determine if veterans are eligible for non-VA care closer to where they reside.   

The announcement was exactly what the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States wanted to hear, especially since more than 2,500 member responses to an initial report released in early March revealed that veterans strongly opposed the use of “as the crow flies” distances to determine whether or not they were eligible for the Veterans Choice Program.

In a statement, the VFW national commander said VA now needs to take the next step.

“The VFW is glad the VA agreed to change the measurement to actual driving distances, but the VA and Congress must now eliminate the 40-mile bubble they placed around their medical facilities,” said VFW National Commander John W. Stroud. “If a local VA cannot meet someone’s medical requirements, then it is absurd to require any veteran to drive hundreds of miles to another VA that can. The intent of the Veterans Choice Program is to better serve veterans, period.”    

Read the VA release here.

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