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The expansion is modeled after a Murray bill that would make veterans of all eras eligible for proven VA caregivers program 

After clearing key committee, the bill now moves to the full Senate

(Washington, D.C.) –  Today, the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee advanced legislation that would phase in eligibility for veterans of all eras for the Department of Veteran Affairs’ caregivers program, a provision modeled after legislation Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) introduced earlier this year. Currently, only post-9/11 veterans are eligible for the program, which ensures that veteran caregivers- often the veteran’s spouse, family member, or friend- receive resources and guidance, while giving ill, wounded, and injured veterans greater flexibility in their care. The program expansion is included in the Caring for our Veterans Act of 2017 and now moves to the full Senate.

 “There are millions of hidden heroes in communities across this country who put their own lives on hold to help care for our veterans,” Sen. Murray said. “They may not wear uniforms or go overseas, but they are critical to our nation nonetheless. I’m proud to fight to expand this program and build on this country’s promise to care for those who have bravely served our nation-- and I urge my colleagues in Congress to help me get this done for those who have sacrificed so much on our behalf.”

A comprehensive study commissioned by the Elizabeth Dole Foundation found that caregivers often sacrifice their own physical, emotional, and financial well-being in order to provide care to servicemembers and veterans. The VA’s caregivers program offers much-needed support to caregivers to ensure veterans can choose care that best suits their needs.