Congressman Frank Guinta has introduced legislation that denies bonuses to senior VA executives who fail to deliver timely care to veterans.
Guinta says the Veterans Administration Bonus Elimination Act would provide an incentive for VA hospital executives to schedule appointments within thirty days of a veteran’s request for one.
Thirty days is the VA benchmark spelled out in the Veterans Choice law passed in 2014.
Guinta says he wishes such legislation wasn't necessary. "But the reality is, the leadership within the VA has not changed the culture within the VA," he says. "There are good people who work at the VA. We want to make sure that the culture is changed, that the leadership demands an attitude change within the VA."
Last month, the Manchester VA hospital saw nearly 95 percent of patients within 30 days. At the White River Junction, Vermont VA hospital, that number is 96 percent. The bill was co-introduced with Hawaii Democrat Tulsi Gabbard. Guinta says he’s confident the bill will enjoy bipartisan support.