Sinema Introduces Bipartisan Bill Strengthening VA Mental Health Services

Jan 23, 2020

WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema and Republican Senator Bill Cassidy (La.) introduced the bipartisan Improving Mental Health Care for Veterans Act—legislation requiring the VA to develop effective guidelines for treating serious mental illnesses.
“Arizona veterans have earned and deserve the best possible care for their mental and physical wounds. We’re ensuring the VA has the right resources and plans to care for veterans with serious mental illness,” said Sinema, a member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee.
Sinema’s bipartisan Improving Mental Health Care for Veterans Act strengthens the VA’s mental health care services by requiring the VA to consult with other entities, form a working group, and develop clinical practice guidelines for treatment of serious mental illnesses such as Schizophrenia, persistent mood disorder, major depressive disorder, schizoaffective disorder, and any other relevant serious disorder.
Sinema has long been a champion for Arizona veterans and servicemembers. Last year, Sinema passed her bipartisan Sgt. Daniel Somers Network of Support Act into law. The legislation was inspired by Sgt. Daniel Somers, an Arizona Army veteran who served two tours in Iraq and was diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries and PTSD upon returning home. He lost his life to suicide in 2013. The bill requires that the Department of Defense work with the Red Cross to collect from new servicemembers the names of loved ones they consider to be their network of support. In return, the Department of Defense will provide the network of support information about the benefits and services available to military members.