Jefferson City moves forward with new VA clinic
JEFFERSON CITY – The next phase of a new VA facility in Jefferson City is underway.
Jefferson City Council approved construction plans for a new VA facility Monday night. The current clinic is located at 2707 W. Edgewood and the new clinic will be down the street at 3439 W. Edgewood, which is a 3.35 acre plot of land.
City planner Ian Zollinger said, “I think veterans having access to expanded care is a great thing for the community and it’s always a positive thing for us to have as a city.”
According to Truman VA public affairs officer Jeff Hoelscher, Truman VA clinic’s top priority is to provide excellent healthcare for veterans, especially in rural areas. Truman VA located in Columbia offers several outpatient clinics throughout Missouri, like the one located in Jefferson City.
“Missouri is a very rural state and accessing health care in those areas is not always very easy so Truman VA wants to be able to provide that level of care not only in Columbia but those rural areas as well,” he said.
Hoelscher said the clinic will expand from 7,500 square feet to 10,500 square feet.
The current clinic provides podiatry, behavioral health and tele-medicine services, but the new location will also offer optometry.
“Optometry is something that a a lot of veterans use and require as far as part of their healthcare needs,” he said.
Outpatient clinics help cut down travel time for those who have needed to visit Truman VA in Columbia in the past, and tele-medicine is one way to help connect patients to services far away.
“Telemedicine is a really neat technology where we use teleconferencing to provide care to patients in those more rural areas,” Hoelscher said. “We do that because it keeps them from having to travel in many cases to here in Columbia to receive that same care.”
Zollinger believes veterans will find the new clinic useful.
“I think they will react positively to a new clinic for the veterans,” Zollinger said. “We try to support Jefferson City citizens the best we can.”
The new facility is expected to be built by December 2018.