Caring for Veterans

Does the VA adequately serve wounded vets?


Battle-scarred veterans often spend more time waiting for decisions from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) on their disability claims than they spent at war. At least 500,000 veterans have waited an average of six months for a decision on a disability claim and another 200,000 have waited an average of five years for a decision on an appeal. New VA Secretary Eric Shinseki — himself a disabled Vietnam vet — vows to unblock the huge claims backlog, but it may take until 2015. That's partly because the VA has expanded the number of compensation-worthy illnesses from the Vietnam War. Veterans' organizations laud Shinseki but disagree over how deeply VA changes should run. Meanwhile, lawmakers in Congress are close to passing legislation to compensate relatives ...

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