In the past two years, the VA has filled nearly 4,000 mental health positions nationwide through the Mental Health Hiring Initiative, surpassing its original goal by more than 1,000. According to statistics from the Department of Veterans Affairs, this is providing nearly 120,000 more Veterans access to mental health services each year. VA Secretary Robert Wilkie credits the additional resources to the decision in 2017 to prioritize preventing Veteran suicide. “As outlined in the MISSION Act, VA will continue to recruit and retain the best health care providers to meet patient demand and provide quick access to mental health care,” Wilkie said. “Building a clinical trainee pipeline of qualified health care professionals is crucial to future VA recruitment and sustainment efforts.”