Senator Murray Directs VA to open Northwest Washington VA Clinic by February 2008

Jun 13 2007

Murray adds language to key Senate bill that pushes the VA open new clinic without delay

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray announced she has added language to a key Senate bill calling on the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to open the new Northwest Washington Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) on time by February 2008. 

Senator Murray, who sits of the Senate Military Construction and Veterans Affairs (MilCon/VA) Appropriations Subcommittee, today included the language in the Subcommittee's fiscal year '08 funding bill. 

The language that Murray inserted reads:   

"The Committee is aware of the lack of access to VA primary care in Washington state and appreciates the Department’s approval of a CBOC in Northwest Washington. The Committee encourages the VA to move forward in opening the CBOC by the VA’s target date of February 2008." 
Murray, who worked for years with Rep. Rick Larsen (D-WA 2nd) and local veterans to get the VA to approve the new facility, wants to make sure it opens as planned.  Murray has been frustrated by delays in getting the VA to open another regional clinic in Wenatchee and wants to ensure that veterans in Northwest Washington do not face similar delays. 

"Veterans throughout Northwest Washington have waited long enough for easier access to VA care.  Today, we put the VA on notice that we expect them to open the new clinic on time so our veterans can get the care they have earned," Murray said. 

When it opens, the clinic will serve veterans in San Juan, Island, Whatcom, Skagit and northern Snohomish County. 

Senator Murray is a national leader on veteran's issues and a key member of the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee in addition to her role on MilCon/Va.   

Murray's language passed the MilCon/VA Subcommittee today and is expected to be approved by the full Senate Appropriations Committee tomorrow, June 14, 2007.