Summary: H.R.3661 — 105th Congress (1997-1998)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.3661. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (04/01/1998)

Persian Gulf War Veterans' Health and Medical Research Act of 1998 - Requires the Director of the National Institutes of Health to establish and manage research activities within the Departments of Defense (DOD) and Veterans Affairs (VA) to ensure that a greater priority is given to research on: (1) effective treatment for ill Persian Gulf War veterans; and (2) exposure to all potentially hazardous substances and diseases encountered by military personnel mobilized or deployed in support of combat operations under the United States Central and Eastern European Commands during the period beginning on August 2, 1990, and ending on December 31, 1991, including chemical and biological warfare agents, pyridostigmine bromide, vaccinations, and any other manmade or naturally occurring toxic substances or diseases to which such veterans were exposed. Provides a research timetable. Requires the identification of all substances to which such veterans may have been exposed and all illnesses that such veterans are experiencing. Requires the Director to compile a list of chronic illnesses for which valid models of successful treatment are provided. Requires an interagency agreement between the Secretaries of Defense, Veterans Affairs, and Health and Human Services for the completion of requirements under this section.

(Sec. 3) Requires the Director to establish a single comprehensive database and monitoring system for the collection, storage, and analysis of medical research data covering all Gulf War veterans in order to monitor their status and clinical progress. Requires such information to be available to the public. Authorizes appropriations. Requires the Director to submit a database development plan to the House and Senate Committees on Veterans' Affairs, the Senate Committee on Armed Services, the House Committee on National Security (designated committees), the Comptroller General, and Gulf War veterans' representatives. Requires the database to become operational within six months after enactment of this Act. Requires the Director to compile and analyze on an ongoing basis all database data likely to be scientifically useful in determining the association, if any, between the illnesses suffered by Gulf War veterans and their exposure to biological, chemical, or toxic agents, pyridostigmine bromide, vaccines, or other potentially hazardous substances. Requires an annual report from the Director to the designated committees.

(Sec. 4) Requires a joint semiannual report from the Secretaries of Defense and Veterans Affairs to the designated committees on their research progress concerning the health of such veterans and the health status of veterans being tracked in the database.

(Sec. 5) Directs the Comptroller General to carry out annual assessments of the research-related activities of the Director and the Secretaries of Defense and Veterans Affairs, requiring appropriate recommendations and reports to the designated committees.

(Sec. 6) Requires the Director to review the research and database findings in order to provide new treatment protocols for individual and multiple toxic exposures. Requires a training program for DOD and VA physicians to implement such protocols.

(Sec. 7) Requires the Director to carry out an outreach program to provide Gulf War veterans with information concerning the health risks of such service and available treatments. Requires the establishment of an ombudsman program to facilitate addressing complaints of such veterans regarding treatment for such health risks. Authorizes appropriations. Requires release to the public of all research findings and treatment protocols developed under this Act.