PHOTOS: McGovern Joins VA Secretary McDonald for Ribbon Cutting at New VA Specialty Care Clinic in Worcester

Congressman Jim McGovern (MA-02) joined U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald, UMass Medical School Chancellor Michael F. Collins, MD, and other regional and local leaders today for the ribbon cutting on the new VA specialty care clinic in Worcester. Click here to view photos online.

“Today I was proud to join Secretary McDonald and Chancellor Collins for the ribbon cutting at the new VA specialty care clinic in Worcester,” Congressman McGovern said. “Strengthening and expanding access to health care for our veterans is one of the most important ways we can honor their service.

“For our Worcester area veterans, this new facility will help to increase access to essential care, including podiatry, optometry, and audiology,” McGovern added. “Giving our veterans a local option for this care will ensure they no longer need to travel long distances to other VA facilities in New England. Every step of the way, I have been proud to work side by side with UMass and the VA to move this partnership forward and today we are seeing the results of this important work. The opening of this clinic is a big victory for our veterans and I will continue to work hard to ensure that they can access the care they need and deserve.”

Congressman McGovern has been a leading voice in the effort to broaden and enhance access to health care for veterans in the greater Worcester area and across his district. As a strong supporter of continued collaboration between the UMass Medical School and the VA Central Western Massachusetts Healthcare System, Congressman McGovern was pleased to welcome VA Chief of Staff Rob Nabors in December for a briefing and tour of the UMass campus.

In early 2016, VA CWM HCS will begin providing specialty care within the Biotech 4 building at 377 Plantation Street which is located on the UMMS campus. The annex will provide high demand specialty services including Podiatry, Optometry and Audiology. Audiology is a new service for Worcester area Veterans, allowing them the opportunity to receive this much-needed  service locally instead of traveling long distances to other VA facilities in New England.

Joining Congressman McGovern and Secretary McDonald were Chancellor Michael F. Collins, MD of the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS), VA New England Director Dr. Michael Mayo-Smith and John P. Collins, Director VA Central Western Massachusetts Healthcare System (VA CWM HCS) who pledge to continue to develop the relationship between the two organizations as they work together to expand services to Veterans in the Worcester County area.

Providing expanded services like these near the UMMS campus would lead to a notable reduction in travel time for many veterans, an improvement in the coordination of care and expanded access to specialty care services and clinical trials.