August 25, 2014
US House of Representatives
Committee on Veterans Affairs
Subcommittee on Health
Washington DC 20515
Re: Testimony before Subcommittee on Health
First of all, I would like to say that the Veterans Affairs (VA) clinic in our area is doing an exceptional job for the veterans considering the space, equipment and personnel they have to work with. Also, we have a Disabled American Veterans (DAV) transportation system in place to get some of our veterans to Saginaw, Ann Arbor, or Detroit for their hospital appointments.
Having said that, the distances we have to travel to get to a VA hospital for an appointment are a problem. It is an all day event to travel to and from the hospitals plus the waiting time at the hospital making it a hardship on our elderly veterans. Traverse City is more than 40 miles from any VA hospital and veterans should be allowed to use local doctors and hospitals for any medical needs that the local VA clinic cannot provide.
The VA hospital in Saginaw is in an old building and needs renovation. A new hospital in the Gaylord area would better serve veterans in Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula.
VFW Post 2780