Closure of Many Western VA Clinics Means More Veterans Looking for Recovery Care
When it comes to substance use disorders, veterans are at a greater risk than the general population. In fact, research shows that up to 20% of veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and/or a substance use disorder.
The VA is the most extensive integrated healthcare system in the United States, providing care to over 9 million veterans annually. While the VA offers many services and programs to help veterans with substance use disorders, recent news of the closure of the proposed hospital and clinic closures throughout Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and other states has left many veterans searching for care.
The good news is that many high-quality recovery programs are available to help veterans overcome addiction. One such program is Decision Point Center. Here's what you need to know about these closures and why we want veterans to know that there's still hope for recovery.
Which VA Clinics and Hospitals Are Closing?
This is a difficult question to answer. At the time of writing, 17 total medical centers would close, and more than 30 would be built or replaced under the VA's plan. The current proposal also indicates that the Anthem, Arizona VA hospital will be replaced by a new facility.
The proposed closures and rebuildings result from the VA's ongoing effort to improve care for veterans and make better use of its resources. The goal is to provide care closer to veterans' homes and ensure that all veterans have access to high-quality care.
Are you looking for a specific list of VA facility closures? Right now, it changes frequently as government officials work to decide their official end game plan. However, you can check out this link for a recent list.
What Does This Mean for Veterans?
In the long run, this is not a bad plan. However, those who need support for substance use disorders right now are at a disadvantage. The Anthem, Arizona VA hospital was one of the few VA hospitals in the region that specialized in treating substance use disorders and mental health conditions.
The closure of this facility—even temporarily—means that many veterans will have to travel long distances to get the care they need. And that's especially troublesome during the current economy where gas prices may ensure traveling hundreds of miles is too expensive or too far.
This is not an insurmountable obstacle, but it is a significant one. Veterans struggling with addiction and mental health conditions need all the support they can get. They should not have to travel long distances to get the care they need.
Decision Point Center is Here to Help
If you are a veteran struggling with a substance use disorder, we want you to know that Decision Point Center is here to help. We accept TriCare and understand the unique challenges that veterans face. We offer a variety of programs and services to help our clients overcome addiction and live healthy, productive lives.
Our goal is to ensure that every client who comes to us gets the individualized care and attention they need to succeed. We know that addiction is a disease and treat it as such. Our primary goal is to help veterans get their lives back on track and to provide them with the tools they need to maintain long-term sobriety.