COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - With Columbus being neighbors with Fort Benning, one of the largest military installations in the world, having adequate care for veterans has been a hot topic issue for years.
Monday, the veteran community has some good news with the opening of a new VA clinic.
Columbus veteran Theodore Supp, Jr. paid a visit Monday to the brand new 10,000 square foot VA clinic in Columbus and says he is thrilled to be able to have access to its services.
“We veterans have been hollering about this for years,” said Supp. “Come on now, most of the veterans here in Columbus, we have to go 100 miles away to get services. So yeah, this is great!”
The new clinic includes 24 exam rooms, offices, and one minor procedure room. The clinic will also offer five consult treatment rooms and 12 administrative areas for home-based primary care, according to Prudence Howard, associate director for the Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System.
“We have telehealth services, we have laboratory, and same day services. We also have visiting specialty care such as podiatry,” Howard said.
According to Toyia Tucker, Columbus city councilwoman for District 4 and retired veteran, the original plan was to only have one VA clinic in Columbus on 13th Avenue, besides the one on Fort Benning.
When city council heard from area veterans and their concerns, Tucker and her colleagues made this location possible with help from the Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System.
“Having ease of access to a facility where people can come to a centrally located and easily accessible location, it will mean a lot to many veterans,” said Tucker.
This new location will also provide a comprehensive response in partnership with Home for Good of the United Way of Chattahoochee Valley to get homeless veterans the assistance they need, including safe housing.
“We are collaborating and coordinating to meet the needs of veterans in our community,” said Pat Frey, vice president of Home for Good. “Honorably discharged, dishonorably discharged, doesn’t matter. If you served, we make it a point to serve you.”