Proposal to close VA hospitals nationwide halted, protecting medical services for NYC veterans

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — To the relief of hundreds of hundreds of armed service veterans, Veteran Affairs (VA) hospitals are no extended on the chopping block.

A bipartisan team of U.S. senators — which includes the chair and users of the Senate Veteran Affairs Committee — introduced a assertion on Tuesday rejecting the Asset and Infrastructure Review (AIR) Commission’s proposals to close a number of VA healthcare facilities across the nation, marking the conclude of the fee.

“As Senators, we share a motivation to growing and strengthening modern-day VA infrastructure in a way that upholds our obligations to America’s veterans. We believe that the suggestions place forth to the AIR Commission are not reflective of that goal, and would put veterans in each rural and city locations at a disadvantage, which is why we are saying that this system does not have our assistance and will not go ahead,” the senators wrote.

“The Fee is not required for our continued thrust to invest in VA health and fitness infrastructure, and alongside one another we stay dedicated to supplying the Department with the means and tools it wants to continue offering quality treatment and acquired companies to veterans in 21st century facilities— now and into the foreseeable future,” the assertion ongoing.

The AIR Fee was satisfied with fierce opposition from veterans, advocates and officials when it introduced its tips to “modernize and realign” its Veterans Built-in Providers Networks, like closing the VA clinical centers in Manhattan and Brooklyn, in March.

Veterans rally

In this file photo, Joe Vorbeck of Bay Terrace, a Vietnam War veteran, attends the rally exterior the Staten Island VA Clinic.

Senate Bulk Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was joyful to share the news on Tuesday that his “full-scale advocacy plan” to secure the VA hospitals was not in vain.

“After months of combating, I am pleased to announce that the Manhattan and Brooklyn VA Health-related Centers are keeping open up and right wherever they are. When I stood with our nearby vets, I promised them I would not let this prepare, to rip absent area cure without the need of consulting neighborhood leaders and no interim care prepare, come to be a actuality. I am happy to say a assure created is now a assure held,” Schumer mentioned.

“We must invest further more in bolstering our veteran wellness-treatment amenities, not strip them away, and the preceding program skipped the mark in making sure the wants of our area vets arrived to start with. Our veterans fought for us, and that’s why I will constantly fight for them to be certain our veterans in New York Town and throughout New York get the prime-notch high-good quality nearby care that they gained and are worthy of,” the senator included.


Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-Staten Island/South Brooklyn), who also took up the struggle to help you save the Brooklyn and Manhattan VA health care facilities in March, expressed approval for the senators’ vow but emphasised that the struggle to protect veteran expert services ought to go on.

“I’ve been performing diligently with veterans’ businesses and Household and Senate lawmakers on the two sides of the aisle to end these proposed closures and defend the solutions so several veterans in our local community count on,” she claimed in a assertion. “The Senate’s dedication to block the AIR Commission’s recommendations is a crucial victory, having said that, we will proceed to be vigilant and vocal and won’t stop doing the job to guard these facilities right up until the President definitively claims any proposal from the AIR commission is lifeless on arrival.”

Staten Island Borough President Vito Fossella, who has also been advocating to shield veteran clinical care, commented on the impact on Staten Island veterans in specific.

“From the 1st moment this was elevated, we stood shoulder to shoulder united with Veterans across Staten Island to pledge to them that we would combat to hold these important amenities open up. The proposal from the commission would also drive all Staten Island Veterans to journey to New Jersey for treatment. We can not do that to our Veterans and their people,” he stated.

“We are delighted that for now this proposal seems to be off the table, but we will keep on being committed to our Veteran community in the event this suggestion will come up yet again,” Fossella included.

Democratic congressional applicant and overcome veteran Max Rose also introduced a statement on Tuesday expressing his approval for the senators’ selection.

“As a person who utilizes the VA and has viewed firsthand the specialised care that only they can deliver for veterans like me, I applaud the Senate V.A. committee throwing out this disastrous bureaucratic proposal that would have ripped health care away from 1000’s of veterans,” he mentioned.

Rose also led rallies with fellow veterans and advocate groups in the spring, exactly where they spoke of their individual relationship to the problem and how it would influence their lives.

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