Back in October 2019, at Senator Cramer’s invitation, VA Secretary Robert Wilkie and the Senator toured Healing with Hyperbarics of North Dakota, a Fargo-based HBOT clinic. Cramer states, “The primary point of the federal government is the defense of our nation. Part of that means defending those who defend us, which is why it was important to have Secretary Wilkie visit North Dakota. We stand with the VA and the work they are doing, but we plan to always hold the bureaucracy accountable for getting our veterans the accessible, affordable, quality care they deserve.”
That October visit helped set the stage for what happened this week during a committee markup. The U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs (VA) passed S. 785, the “Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act of 2019” on January 29th, 2020.” An issue championed by U.S. Senator and Senate VA Committee member Kevin Cramer (R-ND), the bill contains several provisions to improve veterans’ mental health services, including expanding the VA’s research into Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT).
“I’ve witnessed firsthand the powerful difference Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy can make for our veterans,” said Senator Cramer. “Our legislation is a positive step. It advances the study of this treatment, which ought to create a pathway for more veterans to receive access to this care.”
“If passed, the legislation offered by Senator Cramer would authorize the Secretary of the VA to enter into public-private partnerships to research the effectiveness of HBOT. require the VA to use an objective test to measure the effectiveness of HBOT treatment, and commission a comprehensive review and study of HBOT, both within the VA and in outside organizations. This study would be completed with a recommendation from the VA about the effectiveness of HBOT.”
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