Congressman John Tierney, joined by Senators John Kerry and Scott Brown, today released the following comments on the possible administrative integration of the Bedford VA Medical Center into the VA Boston Healthcare System. At the Congressman's request, Dr. Michael Mayo-Smith, the Network Director of the VA New England Healthcare System, agreed to hold additional outreach meetings on the administrative integration proposal to hear from veterans, their families, and other local residents and interested stakeholders.
"I appreciate Dr. Mayo-Smith's willingness to conduct additional outreach to ensure local veterans have the opportunity to understand and ask questions about this possible administrative integration. I encourage veterans and their families to attend these upcoming meetings. Additionally, as I have told Dr. Mayo-Smith, it is imperative that such outreach be accompanied by quantitative data and analysis to justify that this proposal will not diminish the quality of care local veterans currently receive or lead to the loss of jobs, result in the closing of any facility or the consolidation of any services, or cause any current or future patients to be transferred. Moving forward, I will keep pressing this issue so that our veterans continue to receive the assistance and services they deserve," Congressman Tierney said.
"Our veterans deserve nothing less than our best when it comes to the care they receive. These upcoming meetings will help ensure our local veterans have a voice in how and where their care is handled and provided, and Congressman Tierney and I applaud Dr. Mayo-Smith for his willingness to lead these forums and integrate the ideas and concerns generated into any administrative proposals. I will not support any plan that reduces the critical services or quality of care for our veterans, period. I want to see the highest quality care continue from Bedford as well as Boston," Senator John Kerry said.
"Ensuring patient quality is a priority and I'm confident that going forward the most appropriate course of action will be realized through rigorous patient outreach and discussion among local area veterans and their family members," Senator Scott Brown said.
Last month, Congressman Tierney hosted a local meeting with veterans and area veterans' agents that featured Dr. Mayo-Smith. During that meeting, Congressman Tierney requested that additional outreach be conducted about this possible administrative integration of the Bedford VA Medical Center in the VA Boston Healthcare System.