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Statement by Secretary Robert Wilkie on President Trump’s FY 2020 budget request

WASHINGTON — In President Trump’s fiscal year (FY) 2020 budget, he has once again demonstrated his ongoing commitment to Veterans, ensuring greater quality, efficiency and timely service that our Veterans have earned and deserve.

The budget funds our highest priorities, including the Maintaining Internal Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks Act (MISSION Act) implementation, Electronic Health Record Modernization, Business Transformation and Customer Service. It also provides a significant increase for our top clinical priority — suicide prevention.

VA’s portion of the budget is based on its solid financial foundation. VA recently received its 20th consecutive clean audit opinion, the highest possible, by the Inspector General and a qualified audit firm.

With VA’s financial strength we are achieving noticeable results with the resources provided:

Dartmouth’s Annals of Internal Medicine reported that “VA health care is as good, or better, than any care our American people receive in any part of the country.”
Journal of the American Medical Association study found Veterans’ access to VA care “appears to have improved between 2014 and 2017 and appears to have surpassed access in the private sector for three of the four specialties evaluated.”

VA has rapidly moved beyond being on the cusp of the most significant transformation in VA’s history to being fully immersed in the transformation campaign. The FY 2020 budget reflects this reality.

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