Donovan proposes legislation amid worries over VA Medical Center closure
Amid worries that the VA Medical Center in Brooklyn could close leaving veterans in both Staten Island and Brooklyn stuck trekking to Manhattan for care, Rep. Daniel Donovan introduced legislation to make sure that veterans are notified of any closures or service cuts at medical centers nationwide, the Staten Island Advance reported.
“A doctor’s office would never just cease service and not proactively contact their patients — it shouldn’t be any different at a VA facility,” Donovan said. “My bill will increase transparency regarding decisions being made at the VA to better support veterans and ensure their concerns are heard.”
The Veterans Awareness Act would require the Department of Veteran Affairs to give at least 60 days notice to both veterans and their local congressional representative before closing a location or making service cuts. It would also mandate that the department hold forums to allow veterans and other stakeholders to voice their opinions.
The Brooklyn VA recently tried to close its Ear, Nose and Throat clinic, but after a rally held by local veterans groups, the NYC Veterans Alliance, Donovan and other community groups, they reversed the decision.
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