WASHINGTON, D.C. (Veterans Affairs Public Affairs Office) --
Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James B. Peake announced plans
to create 44 new community-based outpatient clinics to bring the
world-class health care of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)
closer to home for veterans in 21 states.
new outpatient clinic planned sites
-- Marshall County, Wiregrass
Matanuska-Susitna Borough area
-- Ozark, White County
-- East Bay-Alameda County area
-- Baldwin County, Coweta County, Glynn County, Liberty County
-- Miami County, Morgan County
(5) -- Lake Charles, Leesville, Natchitoches, St. Mary Parish,
(2) -- Douglas County, Northwest Metro
-- Rio Rancho
Carolina (2) -- Robeson County, Rutherford County
-- Grand Forks County
-- Altus, Craig County, Enid, Jay
(3) -- Giles County, Maury County, McMinn County
Texas (5) --
Katy, Lake Jackson, Richmond, Tomball, El Paso County
-- Augusta County, Emporia, Wytheville
Virginia -- Greenbrier County
"VA continues to make access to care easier through an
expanding outpatient system focused not only on primary treatment but
also prevention of disease, early detection, and health
promotion," Peake said.
The new clinics, scheduled to be activated over the next 15
months, will increase VA's network of independent and community-based
clinics to 782, an increase of more than 100 in five years.
This growth in community clinics has helped VA meet veterans'
expectations for prompt, quality service, with 98 percent of veterans
seen within 30 days in all types of VA primary care facilities
throughout the country.
In addition to on-site primary care staff, today's modern
outpatient clinics frequently feature state-of-the-art telehealth
systems permitting veterans to maintain regular contact with doctors
in specialties from cardiac care to mental health at regional VA
hospitals linked for video consultations, coupled with telemetry of
health data or images.
A highly acclaimed national health records system allows
practitioners at even remote clinics to review patient records stored
at VA facilities anywhere in the country.
VA's 21 regional networks develop applications for new clinics
in consideration of reducing the distance veterans travel to their
nearest VA hospital or clinic, as well as local demand, existing
hospital, clinic workload and other factors.
Laura Bishop, Tomah, Wis., VA Medical Center Public Affairs
Office, said the Tomah VAMC has four outpatient clinics in Wisconsin
at Wausau, Loyal, Wisconsin Rapids and La Crosse.
Other VA outpatient clinics in Wisconsin are located at
Appleton, Baraboo, Beaver Dam, Cleveland, Green Bay, Janesville,
Kenosha, Rhinelander, and Union Grove.
Community-based outpatient clinics are located in Chippewa
Falls, Hayward, Rice Lake and Superior.
The La Crosse VA River Clinic is undergoing an expansion,
Bishop said. The current clinic at the Village Shopping Center in La
Crosse has more than 5,000-square-feet of space.
The clinic is expanding to another facility located in the
Village Shopping Center, which will offer an additional
3,100-square-feet of space and is expected to open in August.
This will help provide sufficient resources to provide care to
the influx of veterans in this area, Bishop said.
The outpatient clinics were established to help reduce the
distance veterans have to drive/travel to get medical care/assistance
that can be handled on an outpatient basis, she said.
For more information about the River Valley Clinic call (608)
784-3886 or visit the Web site http://www1.va.gov/directory/guide/state.asp?State=WI&dnum=ALL,
which also has links to information about all VA outpatient clinics in
Wisconsin and other states.