Now playing
00:46
Donald Trump: Obama 'doesn't know what he's doing'
Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein waits to be introduced prior to a press conference at the National Press Club August 23, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Win McNamee/Getty Images
Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein waits to be introduced prior to a press conference at the National Press Club August 23, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Now playing
01:44
Jill Stein raises millions for recount
Former Democratic US Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks to staff and supporters at the New Yorker hotel after her defeat in the presidential election November 9, 2016 in New York. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski        (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images
Former Democratic US Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks to staff and supporters at the New Yorker hotel after her defeat in the presidential election November 9, 2016 in New York. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:14
Scientists urge Clinton to call for recount
LYNDEN, WA - MAY 07: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gives a speech during a rally at the The Northwest Washington Fair and Event Center on May 7, 2016 in Lynden, Washington. Trump became the Republican presumptive nominee following his landslide win in Indiana on Tuesday. (Photo by Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images)
Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
LYNDEN, WA - MAY 07: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gives a speech during a rally at the The Northwest Washington Fair and Event Center on May 7, 2016 in Lynden, Washington. Trump became the Republican presumptive nominee following his landslide win in Indiana on Tuesday. (Photo by Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:25
Donald Trump's wild ride
Now playing
01:46
Trump's challenges in the Middle East
donald trump undocumented immigrants crime fact check origwx ty_00013807.jpg
donald trump undocumented immigrants crime fact check origwx ty_00013807.jpg
Now playing
02:47
Fact checking Trump on crimes by immigrants
Mark Makela/Getty Images/Lintao Zhang/Getty Images
Now playing
01:26
Trump vs. the tape on Obama and the protester
Now playing
01:28
Trump compares Clinton email probe to Watergate
Members of the Secret Service rush Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump off the stage at a campaign rally in Reno, Nev., on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. (AP Photo/John Locher)
John Locher/AP
Members of the Secret Service rush Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump off the stage at a campaign rally in Reno, Nev., on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Now playing
01:20
Donald Trump rushed off stage by Secret Service
AFP/Getty Images
Now playing
02:16
Trump reads letter from Patriot's coach at rally
US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during rally at the Atkinson Country Club in Atkinson, New Hampshire on November 4, 2016.
Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during rally at the Atkinson Country Club in Atkinson, New Hampshire on November 4, 2016.
Now playing
01:56
Trump on US officials: 'What a group of losers'
donald trump nice and cool pensacola fl bts_00001523.jpg
donald trump nice and cool pensacola fl bts_00001523.jpg
Now playing
00:49
Trump's mantra in campaign's final week: Stay on point
donald trump nice to hillary clinton and democrats orig cm_00000000.jpg
donald trump nice to hillary clinton and democrats orig cm_00000000.jpg
Now playing
01:52
Audio of Trump praising the Clintons and Democrats
cuomo lewandowski hillary clinton email exchange newday_00002327.jpg
cuomo lewandowski hillary clinton email exchange newday_00002327.jpg
Now playing
01:28
Cuomo grills Lewandowski on Clinton email 'hypocrisy'
Now playing
00:10
This video is no longer available
Now playing
01:49
Meet the other Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

Story highlights

Trump pledged he would cut down wait times, and put the VA's health care centers in competition with private health care providers

"They have earned the freedom to choose," Trump proclaimed

Norfolk, Virginia CNN —  

Donald Trump unveiled his plan Saturday to reform the Department of Veterans Affairs, promising to create a more modern and lower-cost department while also allowing veterans to opt for a private health care provider.

Flanked by a group of veterans and with the USS Wisconsin serving as the backdrop, Trump pledged at a campaign event here that he would cut down wait times, rein in bureaucracy and put the VA’s health care centers in competition with private health care providers.

Trump said under his presidency, veterans would be able to use their ID card to “get care immediately” at any private provider that accepts Medicare. He claimed that his plan would be more effective and “cost us less money.”

“They have earned the freedom to choose,” Trump proclaimed. “We’re going to transform the VA to meet the needs of the 21st century … We’re going to make the VA great again.”

Trump also talked up other proposals to help veterans returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, including providing incentives for companies to hire veterans, providing business loans to veterans and overall ensuring veterans enjoy a more seamless transition to civilian life.

Speaking in a city that serves as a naval hub, Trump emphasized that his plan would modernize the department and ensure that services “support the whole veteran,” including access to both physical and mental healthcare.

A policy paper posted to Trump’s campaign website Saturday added additional details, including the requirement of OBGYN doctors at all VA hospitals, upgrades in technology at the VA and hiring more veterans to care for veterans. Trump also pledged to fire “the corrupt and incompetent VA executives that let out veterans down.”

But Trump did not say how much his plan would cost the federal government or how he would pay for his proposals.

The Department of Veterans Affairs has become a political lightning rod since a CNN investigation last year revealed that veterans were sometimes waiting months to get care, in some cases resulting in deaths in cases where illnesses were treatable.

The scandal led to the resignation of the department’s top official, the firing of several senior officials and drew the close scrutiny of Congress.

CNN’s Noah Gray contributed to this report.