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Veterans Affairs report outlines need for accessibility, recommends updated facilities

The Department of Veterans Affairs released a report Monday saying that it would close medical centers in Massachusetts, New York and Ohio along with dozens of other facilities.

At the same time, it wants to open new facilities elsewhere and improve access to care for hundreds of thousands of veterans.

The report outlined plans for VA-sponsored medical, mental health and long-term care in Phoenix, Tucson, and Prescott. 

The plans for all three cities include relocating and upgrading existing facilities, as well as instituting more virtual care programs, in order to increase accessibility.

The VA expects growing demand for all types of care in Phoenix in the coming years, and the plan recommends a replacement VA Medical Center at a new, centralized location in the city.

The existing center was built in 1952, and was last renovated in 1999. The VA describes the facility as “facing major infrastructure challenges.”

Vaughan Jones is the weekend reporter for KJZZ, and a graduate of ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sports journalism, with a minor in music. As a Phoenix native, Jones’s dream is to serve his community by covering important stories in the metropolitan area.He spent two years as music director at Blaze Radio, ASU’s student-run radio station. His passion for radio stems from joining Blaze his freshman year as a DJ.When he is not working, Jones can be found writing music with his band, playing video games with his friends, or watching his favorite Phoenix-area sports teams.