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Newsbeat: Service Animals

Reprinted from PN/Paraplegia News November 2015

The Department of Veterans Affairs is making sure its rules regarding service animals on its property are consistent with federal laws

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Revised VA regulations announced late this summer allow only dogs individually trained to perform work or tasks on behalf of an individual with a disability to be considered service animals.

Other animals won’t be permitted in VA facilities unless expressly allowed as an exception under the regulation for activities such as animal-assisted therapy or for other reasons such as law enforcement purposes.

The regulation further confirms that service animals may access VA property subject to the same terms that govern the admission of the public to VA property, and may be restricted from certain areas on VA properties to ensure that patient care, patient safety and infection control standards are not compromised.

“As I have traveled to VA facilities throughout the country, I have heard from many veterans about what a vital role their service animals play in their lives,” says VA Secretary Robert McDonald. “The revised regulation will ensure veterans and employees have clear guidance regarding the presence of service animals in our facilities. VA remains committed to ensuring America’s veterans have access to the health care benefits for which they are eligible.”

 

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Newsbeat: Service Animals

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