Gardner Presses for Answers on Injured Veterans' Caregivers

Washington, DC – Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) announced that he is following up on recent media reports of disproportionate denials of Department of Veterans Affairs caregiver benefits in the Rocky Mountain region, which includes Colorado. Senator Gardner’s letter, addressed to Robert A. McDonald, the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, reads:

I write to request a full review by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs of financial assistance denials in the Rocky Mountain region for injured soldiers’ caregivers. According to a recent report by the Denver Post, caregiver revocations “are occurring at a higher rate in the Rocky Mountain region, which includes Colorado, than in all but one of 21 regions in the nation.”

Women and men in uniform returning from combat deserve the best care our country can provide. Often times that care is provided by “hidden heroes.” A study by the Rand Corporation last year estimated there are 1.1 million post-9/11 caregivers in the United States. These caregivers ultimately save the federal government billions of dollars per year.

In addition to a full review of these cancellations, I request justification for why these cancellations are happening at a higher rate in the Rocky Mountain region, and if they are the result of ineffective information technology operations, which was highlighted in GAO’s “2015 High Risk List.”