In response to a report released by the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO), “VA Disability Benefits: Additional Planning Would Enhance Efforts to Improve the Timeliness of Appeals Decisions,” the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) released the following statement:

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) appreciates the work of the Government Accountability Office (GAO). This report confirms that the current law and process for adjudicating appeals is not consistent with the commitment we have made to our nation’s Veterans.

“Veterans are waiting far too long for decisions in our current appeals process,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. David J. Shulkin. “We have made bold changes to remove the bureaucratic red tape that has caused Veterans to wait an average of three years before they get a decision.”

VA has developed sound and aggressive plans regarding hiring, training and mitigation strategies that are already being aggressively implemented. In addition, VA recognizes the importance of effective management practices for the development of information systems to help integrate and streamline the appeals process. Our new Caseflow system will help us anticipate new information requirements, allowing us to quickly address challenges and provide our employees the support they need.

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