Letter: Cuts to VA services would be a slap in the face to veterans

Published 12:00 am Sunday, April 3, 2022

As a veteran who currently receives care at the Salisbury Veterans Facility I agree wholeheartedly with Ronnie Smith (no kin) and his letter about the article in Sunday’s paper concerning proposed changes.

As long as we have a military service we will have a constant and growing need for more health care, not less. Please read this portion of Sunday’s article: “In June 2018, former President Donald Trump signed into law bipartisan legislation called the Mission Act that aims to expand veterans’ access to health care.” The key words here are: “expand veterans’ access.” Not “lessen” or “decrease.”

Salisbury is a fine facility and is providing excellent care to its veterans. There has been continuous remodeling and updating throughout the past several years. This review panel should take into consideration that we were plagued by the COVID virus for the two years they did their review and that in itself took a great toll on the numbers of patient visits seen at every hospital facility (VA and non-VA) across the country. Those numbers are not a fair and accurate count of those who had to do without needed services during those times.

I am one of those who had visits canceled or postponed because of COVID. The facilities in Charlotte and Kernersville were built to be in addition to the Salisbury facility not to replace it. They were built to help ease the burden of long patient wait times for health care. To even consider a decrease in services or service providers would be a slap in the face to all veterans today and in the future.

To eliminate any care now being provided by the Salisbury Facility would be in complete contradiction to the Mission Act.

— Robert W. Smith