DoD Chastised For Role In VA Claims Backlog

Patricia Kime | Army Times | April 16, 2013

Under fire from Congress for the Defense Department’s contributing role in the Veterans Affairs Department’s disability claims morass, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told House lawmakers Tuesday that DoD is “restructuring” relevant offices and responsibilities to ensure quicker delivery of medical records to VA.

Promising an announcement of the changes within 30 days, Hagel acknowledged that the delay in electronic transfer of military medical records to VA is indefensible.

“We’re way behind. We will do better,” Hagel told members of the House defense appropriations panel.

The Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs committees sent letters to Hagel this month pressing for DoD and VA to adhere to a plan to improve the disability claims process by speeding records transfers to VA.