2024 budget provides critical funding for ending Veteran homelessness, preventing Veteran suicide, delivering care and benefits to toxic-exposed Veterans and more
WASHINGTON — The Biden-Harris administration released the president’s budget for fiscal year 2024. This budget proposes critical resources to help VA serve all Veterans, their families, caregivers, and survivors as well as they have served their country.
This is the largest budget proposal in U.S. history for Veterans, their families, caregivers and survivors. The total FY 2024 request for VA is $325.1 billion, a $16.6 billion (+5.4%) increase above the FY 2023 budget enacted level. This includes a discretionary budget request of $142.8 billion, a $3.0 billion (+2.1%) increase over FY 2023. The 2024 mandatory funding request is $182.3 billion, an increase of $13.6 billion (+8.1%) above 2023.
“As President Biden often says, our nation has a sacred obligation to support Veterans, their families, caregivers and survivors — and this proposed budget will help us do exactly that,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. “With these historic investments, we at VA can continue to deliver more care and more benefits to more Veterans than ever before in our nation’s history.”
President Biden has made supporting Veterans a key pillar of his Unity Agenda, and his budget request demonstrates the Biden-Harris administration’s focus on ensuring Veterans have timely access to world-class care and benefits. At the Department of Veterans Affairs, the budget will:
Expand health care and benefits for toxic-exposed Veterans: The PACT Act, landmark legislation which President Biden signed into law last year, expands VA health care and benefits to millions of Veterans exposed to burn pits, Agent Orange and other toxins. The budget requests $20.3 billion in 2024 for the Cost of War Toxic Exposures Fund — $15.3 billion above 2023 — for health care, research and benefits delivery associated with exposure to environmental hazards for Veterans and their survivors.
- Invest in preventing Veteran suicide: Suicide prevention is VA’s top clinical priority and a top priority of the Biden-Harris administration. This budget provides $16.6 billion in 2024 for mental health efforts, including suicide prevention — up from $15.0 billion in 2023. As a part of that, the budget includes $559 million for Veteran suicide prevention outreach programs and an estimated $2.5 billion in suicide-specific medical treatment. Among other efforts, these funds will support VA’s initiatives to provide free emergency health care to Veterans in suicidal crisis at VA or non-VA facilities and help fund local organizations that provide or coordinate suicide prevention services for Veterans and other eligible individuals and their families.
- Bolster efforts to end Veteran homelessness: Veteran homelessness has decreased by 11% since 2020 and VA permanently housed more than 40,000 homeless Veterans in 2022, but VA and the Biden-administration will not rest until every Veteran in America has a good, safe home. The budget invests $3.1 billion in providing homeless Veterans — and Veterans at-risk of homelessness — with permanent housing, access to health care and other supportive services.
- Support women Veterans’ health care: More women Veterans are choosing VA health care than ever before, with the number of women Veterans using VA services tripling over the last 20 years — growing from 160,000 in 2002 to more than 627,000 today. The budget invests $257 million for women’s health and childcare programs to increase access to infertility counseling and assisted reproductive technology, eliminate copayments for contraceptive coverage, and support full-time women veteran program managers at all 172 VA medical centers. These investments support provide comprehensive specialty medical and surgical services for women Veterans, including $1.0 billion for women’s gender specific care.
- Invest in Veteran medical facilities: Veterans deserve world-class health care facilities, but the median VA’s hospital was built nearly 60 years ago – compared to just 13 years ago in the private sector. The budget makes a historic investment of $4.1 billion (discretionary and mandatory) for construction to begin restoring VA’s aging infrastructure and providing Veterans with state-of-the-art health care facilities, as well as a $5 billion investment in medical care funding (discretionary) for non-recurring maintenance to improve medical facility infrastructure.
Learn more about President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2024 budget and information on the VA budget.
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