Friday visit to Newman Regional Health by Moran, VA Secretary to offer update on medical care for veterans in rural areas Featured

Friday visit to Newman Regional Health by Moran, VA Secretary to offer update on medical care for veterans in rural areas KVOE News file photo

US Senator Jerry Moran and Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough are poised to tour Newman Regional Health and get an update on the hospital's care of area veterans Friday morning.


The visit comes shortly after McDonough was confirmed as VA secretary. It also comes as the VA continues adjusting its approach to medical care, especially for veterans in rural areas well away from urban clinics. Moran tells KVOE News access to healthcare in rural settings is a major concern for veterans.

Emporia's outpatient clinic closed two years ago as the VA started its Community Care approach, which lets veterans go to non-VA providers if they qualify. Moran says the shift makes sense because the VA's focus should be on where veterans can get the care they need.

At some point this year, Emporia will have an Accessing Telehealth through Local Area Stations, or ATLAS, pod at the American Legion Post 5. Moran also says he's keenly interested in seeing more access to mental health for veterans, in part to reduce the rate of suicide.

Moran says he has a good working relationship with McDonough, who has served as a federal official in several roles, including President Barack Obama's chief of staff and deputy national security advisor. McDonough is just the second non-veteran to lead the department.

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