Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama signed a $3.6 billion bill Wednesday significantly boosting federal support for disabled military veterans and their caregivers.
Among other things, the new law expands resources available for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans' mental health counseling, provides expanded access to hospitals and clinics outside of the traditional Veterans Affairs system, and provides stronger transportation and housing assistance for homeless veterans and retired military service members living in rural areas.
The measure, which directs the Department of Veterans Affairs to designate a primary personal care attendant for each eligible veteran, also expands veterans' maternity care while offering greater counseling, training and financial aid for family caregivers.
The country's veterans are "the very embodiment of service and patriotism," Obama said. "Our obligations to our troops don't end on the battlefield. ... We have a responsibility to take care of them when they come home."
Both the House and the Senate passed the measure by overwhelming margins.