Summary: H.R.5885 — 102nd Congress (1991-1992)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.5885. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (08/12/1992)

Women Veterans Health Programs Act of 1992 - Title I: Sexual Trauma Services - Requires that a veteran who is diagnosed by a Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) health professional designated by the Chief Medical Director (following an examination of the veteran by such professional) to be in need of counseling or treatment for sexual trauma resulting from events that occurred during the period of the veteran's service on active duty be furnished such care and services, even though such trauma has not been determined to be service-connected.

Authorizes the Secretary of the DVA to enter into contracts with appropriate non-DVA facilities to furnish veterans with such care and services.

Sets forth reporting requirements.

Directs the Secretary to provide information and referrals concerning care and services related to sexual trauma that are available to veterans in the communities in which such veterans reside, including care and services available under programs of the DVA and from non-DVA agencies or organizations, by means of a telephone information system using a toll-free number.

Requires the Secretary to ensure that such system: (1) is operated by DVA personnel who are trained in the provision of information and referrals to persons who have experienced sexual trauma; (2) is operated in a manner that protects the confidentiality of persons who place telephone calls to the system; (3) operates at all times; and (4) is visibly posted in DVA medical facilities and advertised through public service announcements, pamphlets, and other means.

Directs the Secretary to commence a study of the needs of veterans for counseling, medical care, and other services for sexual trauma, including: (1) the extent to which women service members have experienced rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment, or other acts of sexual violence while on active military, naval, or air service; (2) the extent of any under-reporting of incidents of sexual violence among women members of the armed forces and the extent to which the rate of such under-reporting differs from the rate of under-reporting of such incidents among the general population of women in the United States; (3) the extent to which women members of the armed forces and women veterans who have experienced sexual trauma have used counseling, medical care, and other services furnished by the Department of Defense and the DVA in order to respond to such experiences; and (4) the same types of information with respect to men who are members of the armed forces and men who are veterans.

Sets forth reporting requirements with respect to such study and the care and services furnished by DVA to veterans who have experienced sexual trauma.

Directs the Secretary and the Secretary of Defense to jointly carry out a program to ensure that persons who are being separated from active military, naval, or air service are provided information on: (1) the counseling, medical care, and other services and assistance relating to sexual trauma that are available to veterans under programs carried out by the DVA; and (2) the requirements of eligibility for or entitlement to, and the procedures for applying for, such counseling, medical care, and other services and assistance. Requires the Secretaries to ensure that such information is provided in both a written and oral form through an in-person interview conducted by trained personnel with each person being separated.

Requires the Secretary to submit to the Senate and House Committees on Veterans' Affairs a report relating to determinations of service connection for sexual trauma.

Title II: Health Care for Women Veterans - Includes the term "well-women care services" within the definition of medical services for purposes of Federal veterans' provisions. Defines such term to mean health care services provided to women, including counseling and services relating to: (1) papanicolaou tests (pap smear); (2) breast examinations and mammography; (3) general reproductive health care and contraceptives; (4) the management of infertility and sexually transmitted diseases; (5) menopause; and (6) physical or psychological conditions arising out of acts of sexual violence.

Authorizes contracts for hospital care and medical services with non-DVA facilities to furnish well-women care services for veterans on an ambulatory or outpatient basis, but only under contracts that expire not later than December 31, 1994.

Directs the Secretary to: (1) submit to the Congress a report on the provision of health care services to women veterans; and (2) foster and encourage the initiation and expansion of research into matters relating to women's health.

Requires the Comptroller General to carry out a study to determine: (1) the percentage of all admissions of women veterans to DVA facilities that are based on a diagnosis of psychotic illness; (2) the percentage of all admissions of men veterans to such facilities that are based on such diagnosis; and (3) an explanation of the difference, if any, in such percentages.

Authorizes appropriations.

Requires the Secretary, to the extent that the quantity and nature of information available to DVA personnel with respect to issues relating to health care for women veterans permit such personnel to carry out research relevant to the health care needs of women veterans, to take actions to ensure that medical research carried out by the Secretary gives consideration to issues relating to the health of the general population of adult women in the United States.

Directs the Secretary to conduct an ongoing study to determine the needs of women veterans for health-care services. Sets forth reporting requirements. Authorizes appropriations.

Requires the Secretary to submit to the Senate and House Committees on Veterans' Affairs a report on research relating to women veterans.

Directs the Secretary to take appropriate actions to ensure that: (1) sufficient funding is provided to each DVA facility to permit the women veterans coordinator to carry out the functions of the coordinator at the facility; (2) sufficient clerical and communications support is provided to each such coordinator for that purpose; and (3) each such coordinator has direct access to the Director or Chief of Staff of the facility to which the coordinator is assigned.

Directs the Secretary to appoint a full-time regional women veterans coordinator to serve in each regional office of the Veterans Health Administration. Sets forth responsibilities of such coordinators.

Requires the Secretary to provide funds to be used for the members of the Advisory Committee on Women Veterans for: (1) travel in connection with a reasonable number of visits to DVA facilities to permit such members to carry out the responsibilities of the Advisory Committee; and (2) the conduct of meetings of the Advisory Committee.