Tester’s veterans transportation bill becomes law

(BIG SANDY, Mont.) – Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement after his measure to improve veterans transportation became law. The provision allows the Department of Veterans Affairs to hire drivers to transport veterans to VA health care facilities:

“Veterans earned quality health care, and they should be able to access that care no matter where they live. The work done by VA drivers and volunteers will ensure that more veterans get the care they need and that we live up to the promises this nation made to them.”

According to the VA, Tester’s measure could save up to $11 million per year because it is less expensive for the VA to hire drivers than to contract with ambulance services or provide mileage reimbursements for veterans traveling to and from medical appointments. The VA vans would supplement the work done by volunteer drivers from Disabled American Veterans, who drive thousands of miles on Montana roads helping veterans get to VA facilities.