WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, voted to pass the Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics (PACT) Act of 2022, bipartisan legislation to extend VA benefits and VA health care to all veterans suffering from illnesses as a result of exposure to burn pits and other toxins during their service.
“Millions of American servicemembers have been exposed to toxic smoke, burn pits, or Agent Orange and have been denied care due to bureaucratic red tape,” said Senator Rosen. “This important bipartisan legislation will right this wrong and provide our nation’s veterans with the long-overdue care and benefits they deserve.”
The Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our PACT Act of 2022 will:
- Expand VA health care eligibility to all Post-9/11 combat veterans exposed to burn pits and other toxic substances, which includes more than 3.5 million toxic-exposed veterans;
- Create a framework for the establishment of future presumptions of service connection related to toxic exposure;
- Add 23 toxic exposure-related conditions to the VA’s list of service-connected presumptions;
- Expand presumptions related to Agent Orange exposure and the locations where exposure may have occurred;
- Strengthen federal research on toxic exposure;
- Improve VA’s resources and training for toxic-exposed veterans; and
- Set VA and veterans up for success by investing in VA claims processing, the VA’s workforce, and VA health care facilities.
Senator Rosen is committed to fighting for our nation’s veterans and ensuring they have access to the care they deserve. Earlier this year, the Senate passed the bipartisan, Rosen-backed Health Care for Burn Pit Veterans Act to expand Department of Veterans Affairs health care coverage for veterans. Senator Rosen has also introduced numerous bipartisan bills to help Nevada’s veterans succeed in their transition to civilian life, including legislation to help veterans start small businesses in underserved communities by creating a small business startup tax credit and to establish and improve Student Veterans Centers at colleges and universities.