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[[Page 2041]]

  VETERANS HEALTH CARE, CAPITAL ASSET, AND BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT ACT OF 
                                  2003

[[Page 117 STAT. 2042]]

Public Law 108-170
108th Congress

                                 An Act


 
To amend title 38, United States Code, to improve and enhance provision 
 of health care for veterans, to authorize major construction projects 
      and other facilities matters for the Department of Veterans 
  Affairs, to enhance and improve authorities relating to the administration of personnel of the Department of Veterans Affairs, and for other purposes.
                <<NOTE: Dec. 6, 2003 -  [S. 1156]>>

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress <<NOTE: Veterans Health Care, 
Capital Asset, and Business Improvement Act of 2003.>> assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

    (a) Short Title.--This <<NOTE: 38 USC 101 note.>> Act may be cited 
as the ``Veterans Health Care, Capital Asset, and Business Improvement 
Act of 2003''.

    (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act is as 
follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.
Sec. 2. References to title 38, United States Code.

          TITLE I--HEALTH CARE AUTHORITIES AND RELATED MATTERS

Sec. 101. Improved benefits for former prisoners of war.
Sec. 102. Provision of health care to veterans who participated in 
           certain Department of Defense chemical and biological warfare 
           testing.
Sec. 103. Eligibility for Department of Veterans Affairs health care for 
           certain Filipino World War II veterans residing in the United 
           States.
Sec. 104. Enhancement of rehabilitative services.
Sec. 105. Enhanced agreement authority for provision of nursing home 
           care and adult day health care in contract facilities.
Sec. 106. Five-year extension of period for provision of 
           noninstitutional extended-care services and required nursing 
           home care.
Sec. 107. Expansion of Department of Veterans Affairs pilot program on 
           assisted living for veterans.
Sec. 108. Improvement of program for provision of specialized mental 
           health services to veterans.

              TITLE II--CONSTRUCTION AND FACILITIES MATTERS

                     Subtitle A--Program Authorities

Sec. 201. Increase in threshold for major medical facility construction 
           projects.
Sec. 202. Enhancements to enhanced-use lease authority.
Sec. 203. Simplification of annual report on long-range health planning.

                   Subtitle B--Project Authorizations

Sec. 211. Authorization of major medical facility projects.
Sec. 212. Authorization of major medical facility leases.
Sec. 213. Advance planning authorizations.
Sec. 214. Authorization of appropriations.

 Subtitle C--Capital Asset Realignment for Enhanced Services Initiative

Sec. 221. Authorization of major construction projects in connection 
           with Capital Asset Realignment Initiative.
Sec. 222. Advance notification of capital asset realignment actions.
Sec. 223. Sense of Congress and report on access to health care for 
           veterans in rural areas.

[[Page 117 STAT. 2043]]

                  Subtitle D--Plans for New Facilities

Sec. 231. Plans for facilities in specified areas.
Sec. 232. Study and report on feasibility of coordination of veterans 
           health care services in South Carolina with new university 
           medical center.

                  Subtitle E--Designation of Facilities

Sec. 241. Designation of Department of Veterans Affairs medical center, 
           Prescott, Arizona, as the Bob Stump Department of Veterans 
           Affairs Medical Center.
Sec. 242. Designation of Department of Veterans Affairs health care 
           facility, Chicago, Illinois, as the Jesse Brown Department of 
           Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
Sec. 243. Designation of Department of Veterans Affairs medical center, 
           Houston, Texas, as the Michael E. DeBakey Department of 
           Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
Sec. 244. Designation of Department of Veterans Affairs medical center, 
           Salt Lake City, Utah, as the George E. Wahlen Department of 
           Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
Sec. 245. Designation of Department of Veterans Affairs outpatient 
           clinic, New London, Connecticut.
Sec. 246. Designation of Department of Veterans Affairs outpatient 
           clinic, Horsham, Pennsylvania.

                      TITLE III--PERSONNEL MATTERS

Sec. 301. Modification of certain authorities on appointment and 
           promotion of personnel in the Veterans Health Administration.
Sec. 302. Appointment of chiropractors in the Veterans Health 
           Administration.
Sec. 303. Additional pay for Saturday tours of duty for additional 
           health care workers in the Veterans Health Administration.
Sec. 304. Coverage of employees of Veterans' Canteen Service under 
           additional employment laws.

                         TITLE IV--OTHER MATTERS

Sec. 401. Office of Research Oversight in Veterans Health 
           Administration.
Sec. 402. Enhancement of authorities relating to nonprofit research 
           corporations.
Sec. 403. Department of Defense participation in Revolving Supply Fund 
           purchases.
Sec. 404. Five-year extension of housing assistance for homeless 
           veterans.
Sec. 405. Report date changes.

SEC. 2. REFERENCES TO TITLE 38, UNITED STATES CODE.

    Except as otherwise expressly provided, whenever in this Act an 
amendment or repeal is expressed in terms of an amendment to, or repeal 
of, a section or other provision, the reference shall be considered to 
be made to a section or other provision of title 38, United States Code.

          TITLE I--HEALTH CARE AUTHORITIES AND RELATED MATTERS

SEC. 101. IMPROVED BENEFITS FOR FORMER PRISONERS OF WAR.

    (a) Outpatient Dental Care for All Former Prisoners of War.--Section 
1712(a)(1)(F) is amended by striking ``and who was detained or interned 
for a period of not less than 90 days''.
    (b) Exemption From Pharmacy Copayment Requirement.--Section 
1722A(a)(3) is amended--
            (1) by striking ``or'' at the end of subparagraph (A);
            (2) by redesignating subparagraph (B) as subparagraph (C); 
        and
            (3) by inserting after subparagraph (A) the following new 
        subparagraph (B):
            ``(B) to a veteran who is a former prisoner of war; or''.

[[Page 117 STAT. 2044]]

SEC. 102. PROVISION OF HEALTH CARE TO VETERANS WHO PARTICIPATED IN 
                        CERTAIN DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE CHEMICAL AND 
                        BIOLOGICAL WARFARE TESTING.

    Section 1710(e) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (1), by adding at the end the following new 
        subparagraph:

    ``(E) Subject to paragraphs (2) and (3), a veteran who participated 
in a test conducted by the Department of Defense Deseret Test Center as 
part of a program for chemical and biological warfare testing from 1962 
through 1973 (including the program designated as `Project Shipboard 
Hazard and Defense (SHAD)' and related land-based tests) is eligible for 
hospital care, medical services, and nursing home care under subsection 
(a)(2)(F) for any illness, notwithstanding that there is insufficient 
medical evidence to conclude that such illness is attributable to such 
testing.'';
            (2) in paragraph (2)(B)--
                    (A) by striking out ``paragraph (1)(C) or (1)(D)'' 
                and inserting ``subparagraph (C), (D), or (E) of 
                paragraph (1)''; and
                    (B) by striking ``service described in that 
                paragraph'' and inserting ``service or testing described 
                in such subparagraph''; and
            (3) in paragraph (3)--
                    (A) by striking ``and'' at the end of subparagraph 
                (B);
                    (B) by striking the period at the end of 
                subparagraph (C) and inserting ``; and''; and
                    (C) by adding at the end the following new 
                subparagraph:
            ``(D) in the case of care for a veteran described in 
        paragraph (1)(E), after December 31, 2005.''.
SEC. 103. ELIGIBILITY FOR DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS HEALTH 
                        CARE FOR CERTAIN FILIPINO WORLD WAR II 
                        VETERANS RESIDING IN THE UNITED STATES.

    The text of section 1734 is amended to read as follows:
    ``(a) The Secretary shall furnish hospital and nursing home care and 
medical services to any individual described in subsection (b) in the 
same manner, and subject to the same terms and conditions, as apply to 
the furnishing of such care and services to individuals who are veterans 
as defined in section 101(2) of this title. Any disability of an 
individual described in subsection (b) that is a service-connected 
disability for purposes of this subchapter (as provided for under 
section 1735(2) of this title) shall be considered to be a service-
connected disability for purposes of furnishing care and services under 
the preceding sentence.
    ``(b) <<NOTE: Applicability.>> Subsection (a) applies to any 
individual who is a Commonwealth Army veteran or new Philippine Scout 
and who--
            ``(1) is residing in the United States; and
            ``(2) is a citizen of the United States or an alien lawfully 
        admitted to the United States for permanent residence.''.
SEC. 104. ENHANCEMENT OF REHABILITATIVE SERVICES.

    (a) Rehabilitative Services Through Medical Care Authority.--Section 
1701(8) is amended by striking ``(other than those types of vocational 
rehabilitation services provided under chapter 31 of this title)''.

[[Page 117 STAT. 2045]]

    (b) Expansion of Authorized Rehabilitative Services.--(1) Section 
1718 is amended--
            (A) by redesignating subsections (d), (e), and (f) as 
        subsections (e), (f), and (g), respectively; and
            (B) by inserting after subsection (c) the following new 
        subsection (d):

    ``(d) In providing to a veteran rehabilitative services under this 
chapter, the Secretary may furnish the veteran with the following:
            ``(1) Work skills training and development services.
            ``(2) Employment support services.
            ``(3) Job development and placement services.''.

    (2) Subsection (c) of such section is amended--
            (A) in paragraph (1), by striking ``subsection (b) of this 
        section'' and inserting ``subsection (b) or (d)''; and
            (B) in paragraph (2)--
                    (i) by striking ``subsection (b) of this section'' 
                and inserting ``subsection (b) or (d)''; and
                    (ii) by striking ``paragraph (2) of such 
                subsection'' and inserting ``subsection (b)(2)''.
SEC. 105. ENHANCED AGREEMENT AUTHORITY FOR PROVISION OF NURSING 
                        HOME CARE AND ADULT DAY HEALTH CARE IN 
                        CONTRACT FACILITIES.

    (a) Enhanced Authority.--Subsection (c) of section 1720 is amended--
            (1) by designating the existing text as paragraph (2); and
            (2) by inserting before paragraph (2), as so designated, the 
        following new paragraph (1):

    ``(1)(A) In furnishing nursing home care, adult day health care, or 
other extended care services under this section, the Secretary may enter 
into agreements for furnishing such care or services with--
            ``(i) in the case of the medicare program, a provider of 
        services that has entered into a provider agreement under 
        section 1866(a) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 
        1395cc(a)); and
            ``(ii) in the case of the medicaid program, a provider 
        participating under a State plan under title XIX of such Act (42 
        U.S.C. 1396 et seq.).

    ``(B) In entering into an agreement under subparagraph (A) with a 
provider of services described in clause (i) of that subparagraph or a 
provider described in clause (ii) of that subparagraph, the Secretary 
may use the procedures available for entering into provider agreements 
under section 1866(a) of the Social Security Act.''.
    (b) Conforming Amendment.--Subsection (f)(1)(B) of such section is 
amended by inserting ``or agreement'' after ``contract'' each place it 
appears.
SEC. 106. FIVE-YEAR EXTENSION OF PERIOD FOR PROVISION OF 
                        NONINSTITUTIONAL EXTENDED-CARE SERVICES 
                        AND REQUIRED NURSING HOME CARE.

    (a) Noninstitutional Extended Care Services.--Section 1701(10)(A) is 
amended by striking ``the date of the enactment of the Veterans 
Millennium Health Care and Benefits Act and ending on December 31, 
2003,'' and inserting ``November 30, 1999, and ending on December 31, 
2008,''.

[[Page 117 STAT. 2046]]

    (b) Required Nursing Home Care.--Section 1710A(c) is amended by 
striking ``December 31, 2003'' and inserting ``December 31, 2008''.
SEC. 107. EXPANSION OF DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS PILOT 
                        PROGRAM ON ASSISTED LIVING FOR VETERANS.

    Section 103(b) of the Veterans Millennium Health Care and Benefits 
Act (Public Law 106-117; 113 Stat. 1552; 38 U.S.C. 1710B note) is 
amended--
            (1) by striking ``Location of Pilot Program.--'' and 
        inserting ``Locations of Pilot Program.--(1)''; and
            (2) by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

    ``(2)(A) In addition to the health care region of the Department 
selected for the pilot program under paragraph (1), the Secretary may 
also carry out the pilot program in not more than one additional 
designated health care region of the Department selected by the 
Secretary for purposes of this section.
    ``(B) <<NOTE: Termination date.>> Notwithstanding subsection (f), 
the authority of the Secretary to provide services under the pilot 

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