Summary: S.167 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.167. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in Senate (01/13/2015)

Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act or the Clay Hunt SAV Act

Requires the Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) to arrange for an independent third party evaluation, to be conducted by September 30, 2018, and each fiscal year thereafter, of the VA's mental health care and suicide prevention programs.

Directs the Secretary to survey the VA's websites and information resources to publish a website that serves as a centralized source to provide veterans with information regarding the VA's mental health care services.

Requires the Secretary to carry out a three-year pilot program to repay the education loans relating to psychiatric medicine that are incurred by individuals who:

  • are eligible to practice psychiatric medicine in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) or are enrolled in the final year of a residency program leading to a specialty qualification in psychiatric medicine;
  • demonstrate a commitment to a long-term career as a psychiatrist in the VHA; and
  • agree to a period of two or more years of obligated service with the VHA in the field of psychiatric medicine.

Limits the loan repayment to no more than $30,000 for each year an individual performs such obligated service.

Directs the Secretary to establish a three-year pilot program at not less than five Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISNs) to assist veterans transitioning from active duty and to improve the access of veterans to mental health services. Requires the pilot program at each VISN to include: (1) a community oriented veteran peer support network carried out in partnership with an entity that has experience in peer support programs, and (2) a community outreach team for each medical center in such VISN.

Authorizes the Secretary to collaborate with nonprofit mental health organizations to prevent suicide among veterans. Requires the Secretary and any such organization to exchange training sessions and best practices.

Directs the Secretary to select a VA Director of Suicide Prevention Coordination to undertake any collaboration with nonprofit mental health organizations.

Extends for one year combat veterans' eligibility for VA hospital care, medical services, and nursing home care for illnesses that have not been medically proven to be attributable to their service, provided they: (1) were discharged or released from active duty between January 1, 2009, and January 1, 2011, and (2) did not enroll to receive such care during the five-year period of eligibility following their discharge or release.