The Department of Veterans Affairs today issued an interim final rule revising medical regulations for the Veterans Choice Program that will increase the number of veterans who are eligible for the program. The Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014 requires the VA to enter into agreements with eligible non-VA entities or providers to furnish hospital care and medical services to eligible veterans who elect to receive care under the program. The interim final rule implements changes mandated by the Construction Authorization and Choice Improvement Act of 2014 to the criteria VA may consider when determining if a veteran faces an unusual or excessive burden in traveling to the nearest VA medical facility. The rule also implements provisions in the Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act of 2015 that expand eligibility for veterans through new criteria related to wait times and distance requirements and also expands eligibility for providers. The rule will be published in the Dec. 1 Federal Register, and VA will accept comments through March 29.