At our monthly meeting of the American Legion Post 69 on Oct. 5, we were advised that the VA was interested in constructive ideas concerning a VA Clinic in Payson and in other remote areas in Arizona.
I would like to suggest arrangements be made with local hospitals and clinics that would work similar to Medicare. Issue each vet a card that would be accepted the same way the Medicare card works.
This was suggested to me eight or so years ago by Col. Ken Murphy, U.S. Army, and I thought it sounded like a good idea then, and it seems like an even better idea today ... the 10-year anniversary of the Afghan war.
It was reported last week in the Roundup, that Payson Regional Medical Center did not want to get involved in vets’ care, because the payout for services was the same as what they received from Medicare ... therefore not profitable enough for the hospital to take it on.
This hospital, like many these days, is seldom filled. I’m also sure the hospital receives a lot of state and federal dollars. Pressure could be applied to give the veterans a fair shake.
As you know, the closest facililties for Payson vets right now is Phoenix or Prescott, and from what I hear, these hospitals are usually full.
This policy could be instituted nationwide, not just in Arizona, to help our veterans. Everyone claims to want to help these men, let’s see some real action.
Editor’s Note: The Roundup story did not in any way say that Payson Regional Medical Center was not interested in providing veterans care. Chris Bacon, associate director of the Phoenix VA Health Care System, said an alternative to having a local clinic for veterans would be to work with Payson Regional Medical Center and area physicians and medical specialists to make the VA’s fee-based program available. He also said that is not an especially popular way to go with many providers of health care services. No one from PRMC spoke at the veterans meeting.