Smith Opposes VA Decision to Close Alliance Clinic
WASHINGTON, DC- Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE), co-chair of the House Rural Veterans Caucus, today expressed his disappointment after learning the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) plans to close the VA clinic in Alliance. In August, Smith sent a letter to VA Secretary Eric Shinseki outlining his support for the Alliance clinic and urging the Secretary to take into account the circumstances facing veterans who live in rural areas.
"This decision - coming just days before we observe Veterans Day - is extremely disappointing. I am dismayed the VA has made the decision to shut the doors on a clinic which serves nearly 200 veterans from the Alliance area, many of whom use the clinic for their routine procedures and checkups.
"It is disappointing the VA did not take into account the circumstances facing veterans who live in rural areas and who might - because of the distances and travel time - put off necessary treatments or visits. The VA needs to reconsider this decision as soon as possible," Smith said.
The clinic is currently open the first and third Thursday of every month. Veterans who use the facility will need to travel to Scottsbluff, Gordon or Hot Springs, South Dakota for treatment when the clinic closes.