FY2021 National Defense Authorization Act: Selected Personnel and Health Care Issues

For FY2021, the House-passed and Senate-passed National Defense Authorization Act bills sought to implement or supplement various categories of personnel and health care matters related to servicemembers, maritime personnel, servicemember families, and DOD civilian employees. Certain provisions address annual authorizations of military personnel end-strengths, others affect existing program authorities, and some are novel personnel and healthcare programs. The legislative process for these two bills culminated on January 1, 2021, when the FY2021 NDAA became P.L. 116-283 after Congress voted to override a Presidential veto.

The FY2021 NDAA authorizes a 3.0% increase in military basic pay, consistent with the Administration’s FY2021 budget request and the House and Senate-passed NDAA bills.

The FY2021 NDAA included several provisions that seek to enhance oversight of diversity and inclusion issues in DOD and establish various initiatives meant to improve diversity and inclusion in DOD. Military justice and criminal investigations matters in the FY2021 NDAA focus on sex-related offenses and protecting military family members.

Several provisions in the FY2021 NDAA address military family matters, such as family readiness, military spouse education and employment, military childcare programs, and military parental leave.

The FY2021 NDAA includes a number of provisions that delay or clarify certain congressionally directed or DOD-initiated reform efforts for military health system administration. There are also provisions meant to enhance Congress’s understanding of DOD’s health care billing practices and provide authority to waive certain billing requirements. Other provisions in the FY2021 NDAA address mental health issues affecting servicemembers, veterans, and family members. There are eight general mental health assessment, funding, and reporting provisions, two substance abuse-related provisions, three suicide-related provisions, and nine reserve component-related provisions.    Purchase on Amazon