Log in
E-mail
Password
Remember
Forgot password ?
Become a member for free
Sign up
Sign up
Settings
Settings
Dynamic quotes 

4-Traders Homepage  >  News

News

Latest NewsCompaniesMarketsEconomy & ForexCommoditiesInterest RatesHot NewsMost Read NewsRecomm.Business LeadersCalendar 

U.S. Senate Committee on Finance : Baucus, Hatch Call on Social Security Administration to Expedite Assistance to Veteran

share with twitter share with LinkedIn share with facebook
share via e-mail
0
01/29/2013 | 10:19pm CEST

For Immediate Release
January 29, 2013

Contact:

Sean Neary/Meaghan Smith
(202) 224-4515

Baucus, Hatch Call on Social Security Administration to Expedite Assistance to Veteran

New GAO Report Shows SSA Communication Delays Add to VA Disability Claims Backlog, Leaving Veterans Waiting Months for Benefits

Washington, DC - Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) today called on the Social Security Administration (SSA) to work with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to reduce the dramatic backlog in veterans' disability claims.  The senators wrote a letter to SSA in response to a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, which found SSA's delays are major contributors to the backlog.

"Veterans - especially those injured in service to our country - should never have to wait for the benefits they've earned," Senator Baucus said.  "Everyone understands the Social Security Administration's resources are tight, but there is absolutely no excuse for dropping the ball on veterans' needs.  This issue needs to be addressed, and it needs to be addressed now.  The Social Security Administration needs to come up with a meaningful plan to work more efficiently with the VA and fix this problem. "

"It is unacceptable that America's veterans - the men and women who've sacrificed so much for our nation - can't return home and access the benefits they have earned.  What the GAO found is extremely troubling and the Social Security Administration must take immediate action to clear out this backlog and get these benefits to the veterans as quickly as possible.  Our heroes deserve no less," Senator Hatch said.

In their letter, the senators noted that VA has consistent problems getting the medical records it needs from SSA.  In one instance, regional VA officials commented that SSA takes more than a year to respond to requests.  The senators asked SSA to provide information on any changes it is currently making or plans to make in the future to resolve their delays.

The full GAO report is available here.  The text of the senators' letter is below:

January 29, 2013

The Honorable Michael J. Astrue
Social Security Commissioner
Social Security Administration
6401 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21235-6401

Dear Commissioner Astrue, 

Like all Americans, we want benefits for our veterans to be accessible and provided in a prompt manner.  As Chairman and Ranking Member of the Committee on Finance, we want all agencies under the Finance Committee's jurisdiction to be working together with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) towards that goal.  We are disappointed by a recent report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) which identified that a major delay in processing veterans' disability claims has been a lack of timely response for medical records from the Social Security Administration (SSA).

The details in the GAO report about SSA's lack of cooperation with VA are troubling.  Though SSA has committed to sharing relevant medical records with the VA, VA staff reports difficulty obtaining SSA medical records in a timely fashion.  VA staff rarely have a contact person at SSA who can assist in providing information on the status of VA requests.  In one regional office, officials with VA commented that SSA takes more than a year to respond to requests for medical records.  This situation is unacceptable and SSA must do better.

We understand that SSA has begun making changes that will improve the problems detailed in the GAO report. Please send us a detailed response that addresses each finding by GAO and provides us with specific steps SSA is taking to better meet the needs of VA and our veterans, and whether or not those changes have been implemented.  If a proposed change has not been implemented, please provide details on why and specific details on the deadline for implementation.

Thank you in advance for your prompt response.  We look forward to hearing from you by no later than February 19, 2013.

Sincerely,

Max Baucus
Chairman

Orrin G. Hatch
Ranking Member

###

distributed by
share with twitter share with LinkedIn share with facebook
share via e-mail
0
Latest news
Date Title
11:18a HUTCHINSON TECHNOLOGY : HTI offshores, awaits merger
11:17a SANTA CRU : Berkeley's McDonald added to Aptos challenger
11:15a BARCLAYS : share price soars on improved performance
11:15a SERICA ENERGY : Production at Erskine restarts
11:14a DIAGEO : Pension row at drinks firm
11:14a ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND : Firms to give Brexit brief
11:14a SOFTBANK : Halt on Hinkley suggests pennies have dropped
11:14a RYANAIR : sparks anger with new charge for children
11:14a DIAGEO : Drinks giant staff to be balloted on action
11:14a SABMiller backs increased offer
Latest news
Advertisement
Hot News 
2.08%SABMILLER : China Approves AB InBev Deal for SABMiller -- Update
6.22%NEWELL BRANDS : Earnings Top Views
3.33%Alphabet posts strong revenue on video market, stock surges
-4.00%CASINO GUICHARD : Groupe Casino Profit Leaps on Asset Sales
3.94%XEROX : Posts Higher-Than-Expected Profit
Most Read News
07/29 CENTRAL PEOPLE GOVERNMENT OF PEOPLE RE : IMF raises China’s economic outlook
07/29 No clean bill of health for EU banks in stress test
07/29 ROYAL DUTCH SHELL A : Shell Profits Slump 93%; Lake Charles LNG Project Shelved
07/29 Deutsche Bank scrapes through European banks stress test
07/29DJGOLDMAN SACHS : Subpoenaed by U.S. Agencies for Documents Related to 1MDB
Most recommended articles
05:06a DP WORLD : Dubai's DP World signs lease agreement with Canada's Rodney Container Terminal
04:00aDJEU Imposes Fresh Anti-Dumping Tariffs on Chinese Steel -- Update
02:48aDJPetrobras Sells Oil-Field Stake -- WSJ
02:48aDJSky, Other Bidders Circle Formula One -- WSJ
02:48aDJNextEra Clinches $18.4 Billion Deal -- WSJ