Monday, March 10, 2014

VA didn't pay some veterans' health costs, report says

The Department of Veterans Affairs must reimburse non-VA hospitals that provide emergency care to disabled veterans — such as for car accident injuries — if the veteran is uninsured, enrolled in VA health care and has received recent treatment at VA.

Federal law requires that such emergency expenses be covered by the federal government even if the injury or illness is not related to the veteran's service-connected disability.

But when GAO looked at a sample of 128 of these claims brought by non-VA hospitals in 2012 seeking reimbursement and that were later denied by the VA, investigators discovered mistakes in half of them, the report says.

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