Reps. Joe Heck, R-Nv., and Annie Kuster, D-NH, have introduced legislation they say should speed access to care in the Department of Veterans Affairs and provide job opportunities for some veterans.
The Physician Assistant Employment and Education Act would establish a five-year pilot program to help former military medics and corpsmen become trained as physician’s assistants to work at VA hospitals.
“With 23 percent of PA slots within the VA open, a program like this is long overdue,” said Heck, himself a military physician. “No one is better qualified to care for our veterans than veterans themselves because they understand military culture and can relate to those seeking care.”
“This bill will allow veterans with medical skills to apply their training and knowledge in the service of fellow veterans,” said Kuster.
In return for the training, the veterans would be obligated to a certain period of service at VA hospitals.