Summary: S.2424 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.2424. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in Senate (06/03/2014)

Veterans Choice Act of 2014 - Requires hospital care and medical services to be furnished to veterans through contracts with Medicare providers if the veterans: (1) have been unable to schedule an appointment at a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) medical facility within the Veterans Health Administration's (VHA's) wait-time goals for hospital care or medical services, and (2) opt for care or services from such providers.

Directs the VA Secretary to provide veterans with information about the availability of care and services from Medicare providers when they: (1) enroll in the VA patient enrollment system, and (2) attempt to schedule an appointment for VA hospital care or medical services but are unable to do so within VHA's wait-time goals.

Terminates this Act's requirement that the Secretary furnish care and services through contracts with Medicare providers two years after the Secretary publishes interim final regulations implementing the program.

Expresses the sense of Congress that the Secretary must comply with the prompt payment rule or any similar regulation or ruling in paying for health care under contracts with non-VA providers.

Requires the Secretary to ensure that scheduling and wait-time metrics or goals are not used as factors in determining the performance of: (1) directors, associate directors, assistant directors, deputy directors, chiefs of staff, and clinical leads of VA medical centers; and (2) directors, assistant directors, and quality management officers of the Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISNs).

Directs the Secretary to modify the performance plans of the directors of VA medical centers and VISNs to ensure that such plans are based on the quality of care received by veterans at the health care facilities under their jurisdiction.

Requires the Secretary to publish: (1) within 90 days after this Act's enactment, VA's wait-time goals for the scheduling of a veterans' appointment for health care; and (2) within one year after this Act's enactment, the current wait times for an appointment for primary care and specialty care at each VA medical center.

Directs the Secretary to develop, update, and make publicly available a comprehensive database containing all applicable patient safety, quality of care, and outcome measures for VA health care that are tracked by the Secretary.

Requires the Secretary to enter into an agreement with the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to provide the HHS Secretary with the information needed to make VA medical center patient quality and outcome information publicly available through HHS's Hospital Compare website.

Requires: (1) the VA website to include a link to the VA's health care providers database that provides veterans with the location of each VA physician's residency training, and (2) each veteran who is to undergo a surgical procedure by or through the VA to be provided information on the credentials of the surgeon who is to perform the procedure.

Directs the Comptroller General (GAO) to submit an assessment to Congress of: (1) the manner in which contractors under the VA's Patient-Centered Community Care initiative oversee the credentials of physicians within their networks, and (2) VA's oversight of the contracts under the Patient-Centered Community Care initiative.

Requires the annual budget that the President submits to Congress to include specified information regarding: (1) the cost of providing, and the number of veterans receiving, medical care through contracts with Medicare providers; and (2) the number of VA employees on paid administrative leave during the preceding fiscal year.

Directs the Secretary to establish policies penalizing VA employees who knowingly submit, or knowingly require another VA employee to submit, to another VA employee false data concerning health care wait times or quality measures.

Authorizes the Secretary to: (1) remove any individual from the VA's Senior Executive Service if the Secretary determines that the individual's performance warrants such removal, and (2) remove such individual from the civil service or appoint the individual to a General Schedule position at any grade the Secretary determines to be appropriate. Requires such removals to be performed in the same manner as removals of professional staff of Members of Congress.