Coffman Applauds Emergency Mental Healthcare Announcement by VA Secretary

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Washington, June 27, 2017 | comments

Care to Vets with ‘Other-Than-Honorable (OTH) Discharges'

Washington, D.C. –
U.S. Representative Mike Coffman (R-CO) issued the following statement after the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) announced a new program to provide emergency mental health services to veterans with other-than-honorable (OTH) administrative discharges:

"As a Marine Corps combat veteran, I am thankful to Secretary Shulkin for his efforts in making sure those who served our country receive the care they deserve" Said Coffman, adding "I will continue to press for the passage of our Veteran Urgent Access to Mental Healthcare Act to make mental health care for combat veterans a permanent part of the VA."

In a March hearing earlier this year, VA secretary, David Shulkin, first announced his plans to provide urgent mental health care for former service members with an OTH discharge and pointed to legislation by Rep. Coffman for being the catalyst for this reform.

In May 2017, the Government Accountability Office found that 62% of the 91,764 service members separated for misconduct from FY2011 – FY 2015 had been diagnosed within two years prior to separation with PTSD, TBI, or other conditions that could be associated with misconduct. Of those, 23% (or 13,282) received an other-than-honorable characterization of service.

To read the VA’s full press release and timeline click HERE.


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