Tester hails the passage of four provisions in his DOCS for Veterans Act

(U.S. Senate)-Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement after the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee unanimously passed four provisions of his DOCS for Veterans Act:

“Workforce shortages have plagued the VA for years and have reduced veterans’ access to quality medical care. These ideas came from folks in the veterans and medical communities and will help address the shortage of doctors at the VA so we can honor our commitment to these brave men and women.”

The Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee today passed the following four provisions from Tester’s DOCS for Veterans Act:

• Allow Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselors and Marriage and Family Therapists to participate in the VA’s Office of Academic Affiliations’ Health Professional Trainee Program
• Recognize the eligibility of health professionals with doctoral degrees for licensed professional mental health counselors at the VA
• Include Physician Assistants in the Nurse Locality Pay System
• Direct the VA to provide an assessment of efforts to address medical workforce shortages, including the effort to integrate more licensed professional mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists, and to develop robust succession planning to address and prevent the prolonged vacancies at VA facilities across the country, including Fort Harrison.