House approves VA health care overhaul
WASHINGTON - The House has approved a compromise bill to refurbish the Veterans Affairs Department and improve veterans' health care.
The 420-5 vote Wednesday sends the bill to the Senate, where approval is expected by the end of the week.
The $16.3 billion measure is intended to help veterans avoid long waits for health care, hire more doctors and nurses to treat them and make firing senior executives at the VA easier.
The measure includes $10 billion in emergency spending to help veterans who can't get prompt appointments with VA doctors to obtain outside care; $5 billion to hire doctors, nurses and other medical staff and about $1.3 billion to lease 27 new clinics across the country.
The Senate on Tuesday confirmed business executive Robert McDonald to lead the sprawling agency.
Desktop NewsClick to open Continuous News in a sidebar that updates in real-time.
Tales of paranormal activity surrounding the Old State Capitol
The Louisiana Red Cross gives out free smoke alarms in two neighborhoods
LSU to wear uniforms saluting fallen WWI heroes Saturday
Mega Millions jackpot reaches $1 billion ahead of Friday drawing
Power restored in downtown Baton Rouge after electrical fire causes hours-long outage