VA secretary has dire prediction for veterans

Bob McDonald: Budget will impact future healthcare

SAN DIEGO - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Bob McDonald, in a speech to members of Paralyzed Veterans of America, said as the population of veterans ages, the more worried he becomes about taking care of them.

"In 40 years, we will have the same issues we have now; when Iraq and Afghanistan veterans get older, we're not going to be there for them. You can't keep kicking the can down the road," he said.

Meaning if the budget continues to be cut in terms of construction, IT and additional staff, the VA can't meet the need.

"The VA is absolutely essential to veterans, essential to American medicine and it's essential to the American public," McDonald said.

Some have for a privatization of sorts, or vouchers, into civilian medicine as a means to an end, something McDonald can't be beneficial to veterans.

McDonald, who used to be in charge of Proctor and Gamble, said in business, you can move budget money where it's needed but said he's prohibited from doing that in the VA.

Anne Robinson, a paralyzed veteran from San Antonio, said, "Cut the red tape. We need Congress, the Senate and the president to let him do what he needs to do."

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