Summary: S.2009 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.2009. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in Senate (02/10/2014)

Rural Veterans Improvement Act of 2014 - Directs the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to provide mental health care to veterans who have a mental health issue resulting from a health condition incurred or aggravated in the line of duty and who live in a rural area or highly rural area through shared health facilities or by contracting with or providing payments to mental health care providers that are not otherwise affiliated with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) if the Secretary makes specified determinations related to the lack of accessibility to or availability of recommended or requested care from the VA.

Requires the Secretary to report on the effectiveness of complementary and alternative medicine used by the VA in treating veterans with mental health conditions resulting from a health condition that was incurred or aggravated in the line of duty.

Authorizes the Secretary to: (1) award grants of up to $100,000 to state veterans agencies, veterans service organizations, and/or tribal organizations to provide transportation to and from medical centers to veterans in rural and highly rural areas who would otherwise be eligible for reimbursement for or payment of travel expenses by the VA; and (2) carry out a pilot program to assess the feasibility and advisability of providing a housing allowance to health care providers of the VA who accept assignment at rural or highly rural community-based outpatient clinics.

Directs the Secretary to establish a program to train health care professionals for assignment at community-based outpatient clinics that predominantly serve veterans who live in rural and highly rural areas.

Requires the VA Secretary and the Secretary of Defense (DOD) to jointly establish a program to encourage an individual who serves in the Armed Forces with a military occupational specialty relating to the provision of health care to seek employment with the Veterans Health Administration when the individual is discharged or released from service or is contemplating separating from such service.

Directs the Secretary to: (1) conduct a periodic assessment of community-based outpatient clinics in rural and highly rural areas to determine whether expansion and improvement of such clinics is feasible or advisable, and (2) report on the feasibility and advisability of establishing a Polytrauma Rehabilitation Center or Polytrauma Network Site in each area in which the nearest such center or site is more than 300 miles away.