WASHINGTON—President Joe Biden signed a suite of veterans legislation into law today including several bills led by U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR), a senior member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee and ranking member of the appropriations subcommittee responsible for funding the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
“This is a tremendous day for the men and women who served our country and now rely on the VA for quality health care and benefits,” Boozman said. “I’ve been pleased to work in a bipartisan way to get these measures across the finish line so we can save lives through modern approaches to breast cancer screening and treatment as well as increased accountability within the department. Our veterans deserve this progress and now we must ensure these laws are implemented in a timely and effective way.”
The Boozman-led bills signed into law include:
“The Dr. Kate Hendricks Thomas Supporting Expanded Review for Veterans in Combat Environments (SERVICE) Act” that will require the VA to conduct mammograms for all women who served in areas associated with burn pits and other toxic exposures regardless of age, symptoms or family history.
“The Making Advances in Mammography and Medical Options (MAMMO) for Veterans Act”, which will require the VA to develop a strategic plan to improve breast imaging services, create a telemammography pilot program for veterans in areas where the VA does not offer in-house mammography and expand veterans’ access to clinical trials through partnerships with the National Cancer Institute. The legislation would also require the VA to upgrade all in-house breast imaging to 3D mammography, which is considered the gold standard of imaging technology.
“The Strengthening Oversight for Veterans Act of 2021,” a measure to provide the VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) with the authority to subpoena testimony from former VA employees who have left federal service, former contractor personnel who performed work for the department, or other potentially relevant individuals during its inspections, reviews and investigations.