Congressman John Barrow (GA-12) today again called on Secretary of Veterans Affairs Erik Shinseki to approve the construction of a Department of Veterans Affairs Community Based Outpatient Clinic in the Statesboro area. He previously sent a letter to Secretary Shinseki last month and has been in communication with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) regarding this matter for the last few years. A copy of that letter is attached to this release, and reads in part:
"This facility is an essential asset in our mission to fulfill the promises we've made to our veterans...Veterans in Statesboro are geographically isolated from other VA health care clinics around Georgia. It is over an hour's drive from Statesboro to the nearest VA facilities in either Dublin or Savannah. Due to its proximity to Fort Stewart and Fort Gordon, Statesboro has a large number of resident veterans. The results are obvious and disturbing -- a disproportionate number of veterans from that area have to travel an inordinate distance to receive health care."
Earlier this year, Congressman Barrow received the following information from the VA:
"Presently, the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center provides a full complement of specialized health care and outpatient medical, surgical and mental health services to more than 43 percent of Veterans residing in Bulloch and its surrounding counties. The number of expected new users is projected to increase five percent per year for the next 3 years. We will meet the future medical needs of existing and new Statesboro patients by locating a CBOC central to those areas with the highest density of Veterans living there. Our goals are to 1) provide primary care and mental health services to Veterans within a 30 minutes drive from their place of residence and 2) extend our reach into the more rural counties bordering the City of Statesboro."
This information indicates that a VA clinic is forthcoming in Statesboro. Congressman Barrow intends for it to open sooner rather than later so as to fully serve the veterans in that area.