Veterans Affairs Begins Search for Veterans Outpatient Clinic in Montgomery County

Mikulski, Cardin, Van Hollen, and Leggett Announce Department of Veterans Affairs has Begun Location Search for Outpatient Clinic in Montgomery County; New Community-Based Outpatient Clinic Will Improve Access to Care for Thousands of Maryland’s Veterans

Today U.S. Senators Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin (both D-MD), Maryland Congressman Chris Van Hollen, and Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett announced that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has begun searching for a location in Montgomery County for a new Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC). While the VA’s goal is for no veteran to be more than 30 minutes from medical care, many of Montgomery County’s veterans face a much longer drive to reach the VA Medical Center in Washington, D.C. The VA’s search is a promising sign that after years of delay, veterans in the region will have access to the quality care they deserve.

“Maryland veterans who have fought on the front lines shouldn’t have to stand in line for the care and benefits they have earned and deserve,” Senator Mikulski said. “With a new Community-Based Outpatient Clinic in Montgomery County, veterans will be able to access the care they need from a doctor in their own community. Promises made to our veterans and military families must be promises kept.”

“It is an honor to work on behalf of Maryland’s veterans to ensure that they have access to convenient and quality health care,” said Senator Ben Cardin. “I applaud the VA for its steps to identify a location for the first-ever Community-Based Outpatient Clinic in Montgomery County and urge the agency to make similar efforts for all Maryland veterans who face lengthy travels to receive the health care they so merit.”

Congressman Van Hollen said, “Veterans who fought for our country should not have to fight gridlock and other obstacles get access to health care, which is why I have long pushed for a new Community-Based Outpatient Clinic to better serve our region’s veterans. With the process for selecting a location within Montgomery County underway, the long wait for more accessible care is finally almost over.”

County Executive Leggett said, “I am very pleased to hear that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is planning to open a Community-Based Outpatient Clinic here in Montgomery County. In 2008, I established the Montgomery County Commission on Veterans Affairs to give our veterans a voice in how the County can best serve them, and they said having services here in the County is a priority. Thanks to Congressman Chris Van Hollen and Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara Mikulski for making it happen.”

The VA is searching for space to lease in the area of Rockville and Gaithersburg. Of the more than 44,600 veterans living in Montgomery County, more than 10,000 are enrolled in the VA health care system. According to statistics provided by the VA, over 4,000 of these veterans live within easy driving distance of the general area.