VAM Email Alert: January 2021

January 2021



** Senator Tester to Lead Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee
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Senator Jon Tester (D-Montana) will serve as the new Chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee. Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) will serve as the Republican leader on the committee as the Ranking Member.

“Serving as Chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee is an honor of a lifetime, and I’m grateful for the chance to lead the committee on behalf of Montana’s veterans and all who’ve served our nation proudly,” said Chairman Tester. “I’m looking forward to continuing the bipartisan partnership Senator Moran and I have built, and am ready to roll up my sleeves along with our committee members and veterans advocates to hold the VA accountable, cut red tape, and provide quality care and benefits to those who’ve sacrificed on behalf of our freedoms. Taking care of our veterans is a continuing cost of war, and I’m prepared to get to work in this new role to ensure Congress follows through on this sacred duty.”

IMF and Veterans Against Myeloma are pleased both Senators have pledged to work in a bipartisan manner to help address the issues facing our nation’s veterans. We look forward to working with them both to move forward policies that will help veterans and service members battling myeloma.


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Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act Signed Into Law
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On January 5, 2021, President Trump signed the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020 into law. This sweeping legislation touches on a wide range of challenges that veterans face.

Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Ranking Member (and former Chairman) Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) commented on the bill, stating, “Congress passed this critical end-of-year veterans package to enact changes and provide support for every corner of our veteran community. I applaud President Trump for signing this important legislation into law to invest in the GI Bill and provide economic opportunities for veterans. Equally as important, this bill improves care and reduces barriers for women veterans, so they can have greater access to the benefits they have earned and expands resources for veterans hardest hit by this pandemic, whether that be financial hardship or limited access to community resources for homeless veterans. I am grateful for my colleagues serving on the House and Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committees, as well as our partners from the Veterans Service Organizations for their work in creating this legislation that will positively impact veterans for years to come.”

To view the bill text and its official summary, click here. (https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/7105?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22Johnny+Isakson+and+David+P.+Roe%2C+M.D.+Veterans+Health+Care+and+Benefits+Improvement+Act+of+2020%22%5D%7D&r=1&s=1)


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VA Announces COVID-19 Testing and Vaccinations for Caregivers of Veterans in the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers
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On January 22, 2021, the VA announced it would be providing COVID-19 testing and vaccinations to the caregivers of those participating in the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers (PCAFC), a program which helps veterans who have faced a serious injury in the line of duty.

“Caregivers play a critical role in caring for some of our most vulnerable Veterans,” said VA Acting Under Secretary for Health Richard A. Stone, M.D. “One of the most important things we can do for caregivers is to help them take care of themselves. The current pandemic has amplified the importance of our caregivers whom we recognize as valuable members of Veterans’ health care teams.”

To view more about this announcement, click here. (https://www.va.gov/opa/pressrel/pressrelease.cfm?id=5609)
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