Showing posts with label VA clinic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label VA clinic. Show all posts

Thursday, October 2, 2014

News on Veteran Suicide at Orlando VA buried in another report

From transcript on report about Robert McDonald coming to Orlando today.
VA Secretary Robert McDonald tours Orlando hospitals
McDonald scheduled to tour local VA hospitals Thursday
WESH 2 Orlando
Oct 02, 2014

ORLANDO, Fla. —The secretary of Veterans Affairs visited VA hospitals in Orlando as part of a nationwide tour on Wednesday.

Robert McDonald first visited the VA Medical Center near Lake Baldwin Park, where he toured the facility and greeted veterans.

The facility was opened as a hospital for the former Naval Training Center in 1968. Two months ago, local leaders decided to keep it open, although a detailed description of all the services that the facility will provide has yet to be revealed.

VA officials said McDonald was briefed on the Orlando VA Medical Center’s mission and projects in process.

Rep. John Mica and several other local leaders also attended McDonald’s tour.

"It is absolutely packed -- good to see it packed on the day that the veteran’s secretary came here.

That’s the argument I’ve been making to keep this facility open," said Mica.
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Monday, September 29, 2014

Shooting at Orlando VA Medical Center


Man shoots himself outside Orlando VA Clinic

ORLANDO, Fla. — Few details have been released after a man shot himself outside an Orlando Veterans Affairs clinic.

The shooting happened Monday morning at the VA clinic off Raymond Street in Baldwin Park.

Officials with the Department of Veterans Affair will not identify the man or comment on what may have led to the incident.

Witnesses at the VA clinic told Channel 9 the victim seemed frustrated as he left the clinic.

"He was pissed off prior to shooting himself. He left and he was frustrated with the system," said Benjamin Rivera.

Rivera was waiting for his appointment when he heard the gunshot. He said the highly criticized and backlogged VA system can sometimes take a toll on veterans.
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Shooting in VA clinic parking lot self-inflicted
Orlando Sentinel
By Tiffany Walden
Staff Writer
September 29, 2014

Authorities are investigating after an apparent self-inflicted shooting in the parking lot of the VA clinic in Orlando this morning.

The person's condition and identity are unknown.

The clinic, also known as Orlando VA Medical Center, is at 5201 Raymond Street.

"At approximately 11:15 a.m. today an unidentified person apparently shot themself in the parking lot at the Orlando VA Medical Center at Lake Baldwin," Heather Frebe, public affairs officer at the facility, said in an email.
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Saturday, September 6, 2014

Is there a doctor in the house at Wasilla Alaska VA? Nope!

VA clinic in Wasilla without doctors
The Associated Press
September 4, 2014

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA — The Veterans Affairs clinic in Wasilla is without doctors after the three physicians working under contract over the summer decided not to renew those.

A nurse practitioner, who transferred from Anchorage last week, is now carrying the 1,000-patient caseload.

The Mat-Su Veterans Affairs Community Based Outpatient Clinic is supposed to have two full-time doctors but has been down one since 2012. The last full-time doctor left in May, KTVA reported

"There were three physicians at various times who had been selected to come work there and had dropped out for various reason or there were credentialing issues with them," said Cynthia Joe, chief of staff for the Alaska VA Healthcare System.

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, has expressed concern with staffing at the clinic and asked the VA's inspector general to look into the quality of care provided there.
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Friday, August 1, 2014

Winter Park Commissioners Support Veterans Clinic

Winter Park commissioners voice support for VA Medical Center at Lake Baldwin
Orlando Sentinel
Michael W. Freeman
Winter Park Forum Editor
July 31, 2014

The Winter Park City Commission has thrown its support behind efforts to save the Veterans Administration Medical Clinic at Baldwin Park, which initially seemed to be at risk of shutting down once the federal government completes construction of a new Veterans Medical Center in Lake Nona.

On Monday, commissioners approved a non-binding resolution making clear the city’s support for the continued use and management of the VA medical clinic at Lake Baldwin, which as Mayor Kenneth Bradley noted is considerably closer for veterans who live in Winter Park than a new clinic at Lake Nona will be.

“It directly impacts the veterans of Winter Park,” Bradley said. “Some of them have moved here because we are so close to that veterans center.”

A day later, Congressman John Mica, R-Winter Park, announced that he had received a letter from the U.S. Secretary for Veterans Affairs, Sloan Gibson, who announced that the Lake Baldwin VA Medical Clinic would remain open and would continue to serve local veterans.

The possible closing of the Lake Baldwin facility had been directly tied to the opening of the Veterans Administration Hospital at Lake Nona, which is opening in phases, with a likely completion date in 2015. A nursing facility there opened last December, followed by the domiciliary in February.
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Saturday, June 14, 2014

Homeland Security horrified veterans at San Diego VA Clinic

Homeland Security Police Caught Harassing Sick Veterans
Benjamin Krause
June 13, 2014 2

SAN DIEGO – Veterans were horrified while seeking VA health care on Wednesday when approached by Homeland Security police in an Operation Shield exercise. The exercise was for the purpose of “presence deterrence” at a VA health care facility in San Diego. Many veterans’ legal advocates are concerned about what this “presence deterrence” actually means and what it seeks to accomplish for veterans needing care.

According to reports, 20 officers from the DHS Federal Protective Service (FPS) dressed in full black combat gear crowded at the entrance of VA Mission Valley Health Care Clinic on Wednesday. These officers were not wearing any nametags and refused to identify themselves. Four bomb-sniffing dogs accompanied the secretive police group that arrived at the facility in 8 white SUVs, which then blocked all access to parking for disabled veterans. Veterans arriving for care were alarmed and some frightened away.

VA Mission Valley Health Care Clinic houses numerous service centers including a general practice clinic, psychiatric clinic, PTSD treatment clinic, and the disability compensation evaluation clinic. The impact of this event on veterans is disturbing.
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Saturday, January 5, 2013

Former Marine killed by sheriff's deputy had PTSD

Parents: Former Marine killed by sheriff's deputy had PTSD
January 5, 2013

PLATTSBURGH — Dusty Michael Clark suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, his mother says.

The Altona man, 28, was shot and killed by Clinton County Sheriff’s Deputy Jason R. Winters on Dec. 30, 2012, after Dusty threatened him with a knife and wouldn’t back down, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

He was diagnosed in 2009 at a Veteran’s Affairs clinic in Albany but was not receiving treatment at the time of his death, said his mother, Sheila Clark of Altona.

“At first, in my heart, I was so hurt (that Dusty died that way),” she said. “In retrospect, I am thinking my son had a flashback” when he grabbed the knife.

The day her son died, Sheila said, one of her brothers shared some information that Dusty had confided to him.

He had been among Marines who responded after the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami that rocked the world on Dec. 26, 2004.

“He had to take bodies out of the water,” she said. “Dead children.”
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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

VA workers chip in to feed families

VA workers chip in to feed families
For the Commercial-News
September 23, 2012

DANVILLE — Many food banks are experiencing severe shortages of non-perishable food items, which result in the needy going hungry. Whatever can be contributed will go a long way toward helping replenish food banks so they can assist families and individuals who need the most help.

This is why the Feds Feed Families Food Drive was sponsored by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) — to provide federal employees with the opportunity to collect goods for delivery to local food banks to feed the needy. The Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Human Resources Management, was proud to assist OPM with this food drive and established a goal of collecting at least 230,000 pounds nationally of non-perishable goods during the 2012 drive.
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Thursday, July 5, 2012

VA opens clinic for homeless vets

VA opens clinic for homeless vets
July 4, 2012

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ Jesse Brown VA Medical Center (VAMC) recently opened the Homeless Patient Aligned Care Team (H-PACT) primary and urgent care clinic.

“This is a walk-in clinic where homeless veterans can see a doctor or nurse practitioner, without an appointment, to get the medical care they need and begin the process of seeking permanent housing and other resources,” said Luz Hein, chief of social work service at Jesse Brown VAMC. “This is a comprehensive patient-centered approach to caring for and rehabilitating homeless veterans.”

The H-PACT is on the eighth floor of the VAMC’s 820 S. Damen Ave. building and is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. The clinic offers medical care and other services, such as case management, substance abuse treatment, community referrals, housing placement, triage, and mental health services to all homeless veterans.

The goal of the H-PACT is to see that homeless veterans receive the comprehensive care and services they need and to reduce barriers to health care delivery, Hein said.

Call (312) 569-6402.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Alaska Native American Indian veterans can stay near home for care

Department of Veteran Affairs, 15 Tribal Health Programs Sign Agreement

15 Alaska Native tribal health programs sign an agreement with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that will allow Alaska veterans living in rural communities to seek health care closer to home.

The Alaska VA Healthcare System has very few clinics in Alaska (Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau and Kenai).

Even though many Alaska Native/American Indian veterans living in rural Alaska had access to a tribal health facility in their community, they frequently had to travel to one of the Alaska VA clinics or even Seattle, sometimes at their own expense, in order to receive care from the Veterans Health Administration.

This agreement will allow eligible veterans (those who have registered for VA benefits) to receive care in their home community. It also allows Alaska Native tribal health programs to be eligible to be reimbursed by the VA for providing that care. Under the agreement, non-Native veterans also will be able to receive care at the participating tribal health facilities.

“The agreement is the result of years of work by both the Alaska Tribal Health System and the Alaska VA Healthcare System, with support from Sen. Mark Begich,” SEARHC President/CEO Charles Clement said. “The goal of the agreement is to enable tribal health organizations to provide care for veterans either in their home community or closer to home.
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Friday, December 23, 2011

VA clinics deal with rise in veteran suicide

VA clinics deal with rise in veteran suicide
Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - As the US Military continues to grapple with the high number of suicides local programs are making progress with the issue.
By: WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY

As the US Military continues to grapple with the high number of suicides local programs are making progress with the issue.

Since 9/11, the Fargo VA’s Seamless Transition Program has enrolled 6,000 soldiers. Four thousand have had visits with the special VA program which works with those coming home after deployment.

This comes as Minnesota State legislators heard from returning guardsmen who have struggled with depression and suicide attempts after coming home from the war. In the past 4 years, 20 soldiers in Minnesota have taken their life. It’s the 2nd highest rate in the country.
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Monday, August 8, 2011

Roaches rotten wood flooring shut down services at West Virginia VA Clinic

VA suspends services at W.Va. clinic
The Associated Press
Posted : Monday Aug 8, 2011 13:51:57 EDT
WILLIAMSON, W.Va. — Services have been suspended at a veterans outpatient clinic in Williamson because of roaches, rotten wood flooring and other problems, U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall said.

Rahall, D-W.Va, said in a news release that he wants answers about the situation at the Community-Based Outpatient Clinic.

Rahall sent a letter on Friday to Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki asking for a report on what actions are being taken to correct the problems, which also included leaking plumbing, inoperable toilets and overflowing trash. He said the conditions found at the clinic during an unscheduled inspection were “deplorable.”

Rahall staffer Diane Luensmann told The Williamson Daily News that she didn’t know who conducted the inspection.
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VA suspends services at W.Va. clinic

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Vero Beach clinic wants veterans to know what is there for them

Vero Beach clinic wants veterans to know what it has to offer
By Janet Begley
Posted June 4, 2011 at 9:18 p.m.
VERO BEACH — For Indian River County veterans, access to medical care is as close as 17th Street in Vero Beach, thanks to the Community-Based Outpatient Clinic.

The medical office, which is run by the Department of Veterans Affairs, held an open house Saturday to encourage eligible veterans to sign up for medical services.

According to Operations Director Tracy Sims, the clinic currently sees about 40 patients each day, with services ranging from blood pressure monitoring, diabetes testing and other primary care services. About 3,500 veterans, both men and women ranging in age from 18 to 100, are registered at the Vero Beach clinic.

"We are trying to let veterans know that we're here to help them," said Sims. "They deserve to get their health benefits because they served our country proudly."

The team at the Vero Beach office handles basic medical care including laboratory work, but refers patients in need of more specialized care to the VA Hospital in West Palm Beach.

"We try to do as much here are we can," said Sims. "Veterans really seem to like coming to this office rather than making that drive down to West Palm Beach."

read more here
Vero Beach clinic wants veterans to know

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Expanding VA clinic meets hike in demand

Expanding Lynn VA clinic meets hike in demand

By David Liscio / The Daily Item

LYNN - With ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and baby boomers who fought in the Vietnam War now reaching retirement age with medical needs, the Veterans' Administration clinic on Boston Street is a busy place.

The clinic recently underwent a major expansion, increasing in size from 1,900 to nearly 8,000 square feet. A ribbon-cutting was held last month.

According to Arthur Salkins, 64, of Lynn, a U.S. Air Force veteran and commander of Franco-AMVETS Post 161, the clinic had 900 registered patients when it opened in 1998. Today, there are 2,143, said Salkins, who counts himself among them.

"Lynn has the highest number of veterans of any community in Essex County," he said Wednesday. "That's why this location is so important."

Michael Sweeney, the city veterans' agent, explained the expansion required gutting the first floor. "It was worth it and work is still under way in some parts of the building," he said. "The clinic provides a level of comfort. It's close by, so there's easy access. For some of the young returning veterans, that may make the difference of whether they come in for services or not."

U.S. Rep. John F. Tierney, a Salem Democrat and longtime proponent of the clinic, said the five-year fight during the Bush Administration to keep the facility in Lynn paid off. "We were able to convince them not to consolidate the clinic. Their proposals didn't stand up to what the actual facts were," he said Wednesday. "
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Expanding Lynn VA clinic meets hike in demand

Monday, July 12, 2010

VA official to clinics: Stop gaming the system. Thank you Larry Scott

VA official to clinics: Stop gaming the system

By Kelly Kennedy - Staff writer
Posted : Monday Jul 12, 2010 13:38:45 EDT

After years of complaints from veterans who say they aren’t getting VA medical appointments within 30 days even if Veterans Affairs Department records show they are, a top VA official sent out a memo asking employees to quit “gaming” the system.

“It has come to my attention that, in order to improve scores on assorted access measures, certain facilities have adopted use of inappropriate scheduling practices sometimes referred to as ‘gaming strategies,’ ” wrote William Schoenhard, VA’s deputy undersecretary for health for operations and management, in the April 26 memo.

The “gaming” came after VA required its employees to ensure patients were given initial appointments within 30 days of entering the VA system. Instead, several clinics came up with ways to make it look as if the veterans had canceled their appointments or hadn’t asked for one until within 30 days of when the appointment was made.

“As we strive to improve access to our veterans, we must ensure in fact that improvement does not focus or rely on workarounds,” Schoenhard wrote. “Workarounds may mask the symptoms of poor access and, although they may aid in meeting performance measures, they do not serve our veterans.”

The memo, first reported by Larry Scott of, comes in the wake of exceptional gains in reducing appointment waiting times announced by VA officials.
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VA official to clinics: Stop gaming the system

Saturday, November 28, 2009

SC WWII vet's battle ends in gunshot at VA clinic

SC WWII vet's battle ends in gunshot at VA clinic
By JEFFREY COLLINS (AP) – 3 hours ago

GREENVILLE, S.C. — On the last day of his long, troubled life, Grover Cleveland Chapman packed a black duffel bag, washed out his coffee cup, put it in the dish rack and fetched his Smith & Wesson.

He threw away his favorite slippers and left his house key on his bedside table in the two-bedroom yellow bungalow he shared with his daughter, tucked in an aging neighborhood full of 1950s starter homes a few miles from downtown Greenville.

Harriett Chapman called as she always did on her morning break at the Walmart deli, checking on her 89-year-old dad. Everything is fine, he told her.

As he shuffled down the steps that spring morning in 2008, Grover Chapman carried the latest letter denying him treatment at the Veterans Affairs clinic in Greenville, directing him instead to take a 200-mile round trip to the VA hospital in Columbia. This time it was about his prostate cancer, though Chapman had received plenty of notices just like it turning him down for help with his jumpiness and frayed nerves. He folded this letter neatly into the bag beside his bottles of medicine and settled into a taxi.

In a few weeks, candidate Barack Obama would take note of what Chapman would do upon arriving at the clinic this last time, calling it an indictment of society's treatment of disabled veterans.

And maybe that's what it was. Or maybe Chapman just didn't want his daughter to have to come home and find him.
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SC WWII vet battle ends in gunshot at VA clinic

Monday, July 13, 2009

Standoff at VA clinic ends with bullets for cigarette trade

Gunman surrenders after Kan. VA clinic standoff

The Associated Press
Posted : Sunday Jul 12, 2009 15:33:53 EDT

TOPEKA, Kan. — Authorities say a gunman who entered a veteran’s administration medical center in Topeka, Kan., has surrendered after trading his ammunition for cigarettes.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reported on its Web site that a SWAT team and multiple law enforcement agencies responded to a report of a gunman at Colmery-O’Neil VA Medical Center early Sunday afternoon.
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Gunman surrenders after Kan. VA clinic standoff

Thursday, July 9, 2009

VA seeks clinic site for Putnam County Florida

VA seeks clinic site

By Chris DeVitto
Published: Thursday, July 9, 2009 1:07 AM EDT
Palatka, Putnam County and local business leaders are still looking for a building to house a Veterans Administration outpatient clinic that would serve 4,000 area veterans.

During a phone conference Wednesday with U.S. Rep. John Mica, Veterans Affairs officials, Palatka officials and county officials discussed options for housing the clinic.

"We are still looking at a neighborhood of 10,000 gross square feet and probably 70 to 100 parking spaces?" Mica, R-Winter Park, asked veterans officials during a 30-minute phone conference.

In 2008, a spokeswoman for the VA said the new clinic would offer an opportunity for local residents to receive basic treatment without driving 30-40 miles to an existing facility and would be similar in nature to what would be offered at a large doctor's office. More complicated specialty care would remain with one of the larger VA facilities in Jacksonville, Lake City or Gainesville.
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VA seeks clinic site

Friday, July 3, 2009

VA clinic opens in Mount Vernon

VA clinic opens in Mount Vernon

Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Lake Stevens, joined with veterans and Veterans Affairs officials Thursday to mark the recent opening of a new outpatient clinic in Mount Vernon. The clinic serves some 2,200 Western Washington veterans, many of whom previously had to travel to the Puget Sound area for treatment.
go here for more

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Military sexual assault victims raped twice, forced to pay for care

V.A. Plans Review of Billing for Care in Sexual Assaults
Published: May 6, 2009
The Department of Veterans Affairs will review the billing practices of veterans health centers around the country amid concerns that some are improperly charging for care relating to sexual assault in the military, officials said Wednesday.

The department is required to provide free care, including counseling and prescription drugs, to veterans who were sexually harassed or assaulted while in military service. Sexual assault includes rape and attempted rape.

But the Office of Inspector General at the department found this year that an outpatient clinic in Austin, Tex., had repeatedly charged veterans, mostly women, for those services. Based on concerns that the practice may be more widespread, the office decided to expand its review to a sampling of veterans health care centers and clinics nationwide.

An official in the office declined to comment, saying it does not discuss pending reviews. The official said the review would be made public when it was completed, possibly by October.

In a statement, the Department of Veterans Affairs said the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System, which oversees the Austin clinic, was reimbursing patients who had been improperly billed. “Patients seen for military sexual trauma should not be billed for payment,” the statement said. “We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.”

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Veterans Turn to VA Clinics in Tough Economic Times

Veterans Turn to VA Clinics in Tough Economic Times

Nov 15, 2008
November 13, 2008 - The worsening economy is taking a big toll on veterans.The Anoka County Veterans Services Office says it could see as much as a 25 percent increase in new clients this year.
Many veterans say that in this economy, they wouldn't be able to pay for medical care without their veteran’s benefits."I would probably just take the medicines I thought I could afford, which would be skimping on my health," said Michael Calistro, a veteran. "I would not be able to afford it."Another factor driving the increase in new clients is an aging veteran population, especially in veterans from WWII, Korea, and Vietnam.
Click here to watch this news story.