I’ve been honored to serve on the Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs Committees to help craft policies designed to fulfill the promise we made to the men and women who served in our nation’s uniform by expanding access to Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health care, benefits and services.

This responsibility also means ensuring we have qualified personnel across VA clinics to carry out this sacred task. We’ve taken important steps in recent months to bolster the VA’s workforce and we’re continuing to build on this foundation in the 118th Congress.

As I visit with VA personnel across Arkansas, they frequently describe the persistent challenges with filling critical roles to provide care to veterans. Unfortunately, this is a problem nationwide. The VA’s Office of Inspector General found “severe occupational staffing shortages” increased by 22 percent in Fiscal Year 2022 from the previous year.

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