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Congressmen Krishnamoorthi, Walberg, Guthrie and Rush Introduce POW Priority Care Act

June 28, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C.—U.S. Representatives Raja Krishnamoorthi (IL-08), Tim Walberg (MI-07), Brett Guthrie (KY-02), and Bobby Rush (IL-01) yesterday introduced H.R. 3527, the POW Priority Care Act. This bipartisan legislation would elevate former Prisoners of War (POW) to Priority Group 1 in the scale used by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to determine eligibility for health care benefits and services. Currently, POWs are allocated to Priority Group 3.

“Our veterans risked all they had for our nation, and our former prisoners of war bore the burden of that service through unimaginable sacrifice. In recognition of their valor and unique hardship, it’s fitting that we ensure that former POWs are able to go to the front of the line to receive the care they need through the VA,” said Rep. Krishnamoorthi.
“We owe every veteran who wears the uniform our steadfast gratitude and commitment to delivering timely, high quality care,” said Rep. Walberg. “Prisoners of War not only answered the call of duty, but they endured unthinkable hardship and made unquestioned sacrifice in service to our country. We will never forget those who did not return home. For those who did, after facing such adversity, one way we can recognize their valor is to ensure former POWs are moved to the highest priority slot when it comes to their care at the VA.”
“Prisoners of War have gone through the unimaginable,” said Rep. Guthrie. “They should have top priority when receiving VA medical care, but right now, they are inexplicably given lower priority. I was proud to introduce the POW Priority Care Act with Reps. Walberg, Krishnamoorthi, and Rush to right this wrong. I urge the House to pass this legislation as soon as possible.” 
“America’s veterans have selflessly answered their country’s call and it is our nation’s responsibility to care for the wounds they bear as a result.  Our POW’s have sacrificed more than anyone should be asked and deserve the highest level of care delivered in the most efficient manner upon their return.  That is why I am proud to join my colleagues in introducing this bill,” said Rep. Rush.