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The Ripon Advance
Bipartisan legislation recently introduced by U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) would prevent veterans from being treated by doctors who were previously fired or suspended by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

The Veterans Acquiring Community Care Expect Safe Services (ACCESS) Act would ensure that veterans receiving care through community programs like Veterans Choice aren’t treated by doctors who were previously fired or suspended by the VA.

“VA health care providers who have been removed from the VA should never be allowed to continue treating our nation’s veterans,” Moran said. “This common sense legislation would help protect veterans from those who put their health at risk — whether at a VA hospital or outside the VA — and keeps our veterans out of harm’s way.”

The ACCESS Act would also give the VA authority to deny, revoke or suspend a medical provider’s eligibility under certain circumstances in order to protect the health, safety or welfare of veterans.

Current VA regulations aim to prevent doctors who were previously fired or suspended by the VA from participating in community care programs, but inconsistent application of federal standards at the local level by VA have undermined those regulations.

Under the ACCESS Act, the VA secretary would be required to deny or revoke provider’s eligibility for community care programs if he or she was removed from the VA, violated a medical license, had VA certification revoked or broke the law.

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