President Donald Trump’s administration is scrambling to shore up a $5 billion emergency medical services fund after it was shut down earlier this year amid a scandal that exposed a scandal-plagued VA workforce.
The crisis fund, which is expected to be activated this week, will allow veterans to receive payments to pay for emergency care at VA facilities.
Its use has been controversial among Republicans in Congress, who have criticized the move as a political ploy by Democrats.
Democrats have defended it as a bipartisan effort to help veterans.
VA officials said they would be working with congressional leaders on a new funding plan.
Veterans have also voiced concerns about the fund, saying they are being denied access to it because they have been denied coverage in the past.
Some of the VA hospitals were in danger of closure last fall when Congress cut funding.
Trump promised to shut down the VA in 2018 but did not do so until this fall.
He did not release a plan for the agency to be shuttered in 2019.
A federal judge in Texas has halted the agency’s closure for another year, a move that could force the VA to close more facilities.