VA hospitals won’t be affected by government shutdownDespite a partial government shutdown, Veterans Affairs hospitals remain open across the country.
By: Maureen McCollum, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
Despite a partial government shutdown, Veterans Affairs hospitals remain open across the country.
It’s business as usual for the VA hospitals in Tomah, Madison, and Milwaukee. The VA’s outpatient clinics, like the one in Superior, and Vet Centers will also stay open.
Madison VA spokesman Tim Donovan says the hospitals are doing everything they normally would for veterans. “We have about 1,007 outpatient appointments just in our Madison main hospital and Madison annex clinic, not counting our other outpatient clinics, and these veterans coming in for appointments won’t notice any difference.”
The hospitals and clinics are able to stay open because they’re funded through the Veterans Health Administration, which is fully financed through fiscal year 2014.
A spokesman for the Tomah VA says caring for veterans is a 24/7 job and that treatment cannot be put on hold.
Crisis call centers for veterans are open, but educational call centers that deal with benefits have closed down.
VA claims processing and payments will continue through the month. If the government remains closed for an extended period of time, those payments could be suspended if funding runs out.
The VA issued an official statement out of Washington saying it “strongly believes that a lapse in appropriations should not occur and Congress should act to fund critical government operations.”