Executive Secretary, Government Relations
The House Appropriations Committee has approved its first two Fiscal 2015 bills – Military Construction-VA, and Legislative. At yesterday’s markup, Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY) said it was the earliest committee markup held since 1974 and it resulted from his intention to complete committee consideration of all 12 bills for FY 2015 before July 4. He also hopes to complete floor consideration of the bills before the August Congressional recess. The VA title carries $588.9 million for medical and prosthetic research, an increase of $3.2 million over current funding. The report accompanying the bill is attached. Note the following language is included urging the VA to improve collaborations with research universities and teaching hospitals:
Collaboration with research universities.—The Committee encourages the VA to strengthen its collaborations with research universities and teaching hospitals for the treatment and research of mental health disorders, such as PTSD and traumatic brain injury, to improve the psychological health of veterans and train mental health professionals so they will understand the unique needs of Veterans. The Committee repeats its request for a report on current VA-university partnerships on mental health research and training no later than 90 days after enactment of this Act.