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You are here News Military Millions of vets get VA-funded private-sector care through program set to run out of money

Millions of vets get VA-funded private-sector care through program set to run out of money

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VA running out of moneyMore than a million veterans annually have come to rely on a Department of Veterans Affairs program to get private-sector medical care at VA expense, a program that is set to run out of funding in two weeks, according to data provided to USA TODAY.

Populous states with large veteran populations like Texas, California, Florida and Arizona notched the highest numbers of veterans who have used the so-called Choice program since it was created in 2014 after veterans died waiting for medical care at the Phoenix VA hospital.

More rural or remote states like Alaska, Hawaii and Montana showed higher percentages of their veterans relied on Choice, which allows veterans to get VA-funded health care in the private sector if they have to wait longer than 30 days for a VA appointment or live more than 40 miles from a VA health care facility.

In all, 2 million veterans have used the program since its inception, including 550,000 so far this year.

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