Veterans, VA staff discuss care at townhall meeting - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Veterans, VA staff discuss care at townhall meeting

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) - It's been about fifteen years since the VA Hospital in Iowa City held a town hall meeting to discuss the possible problems and concerns veterans have, with the care they receive.

"This is the first time we've had one recently," said acting director of the Iowa City VA Healthcare System, Dawn Oxley. "We would like veterans to feel that this is a veteran-friendly facility as well as all our community based outpatient clinics. We want them to come here for their care, we want to serve them as they serve their country."

Joe Gasperetti, a Vietnam veteran has been going to the the Iowa City VA for years. He says keeping veterans informed and having staff available for individual-oriented concerns is needed.

"I think you have to keep veterans in the loop. For example I was disappointed there weren't more veterans here," said Gasperetti. "It's not that we're crying for attention, but we've got problems and needs."

Oxley couldn't agree more, she says having meetings just like the town hall Wednesday, allows them to hear what veterans have to say.

In the past recent months VA health care facilities were in national headlines because of the wait times veterans had, to get the care they needed.

"VA's had some bad publicity, but I think from a local perspective, because that's all I know," said Gasperetti. "I live here in the Iowa City area and I go to this VA hospital and clinic and they do admirable work."

Oxley says they will be aggressive in making sure the concerns are fixed and the above standard care veterans say the get continues.

"They've been wonderful down here, absolutely wonderful," said veteran Pat Grady.

VA staff says if you have any concerns or question contact them directly: http://www.iowacity.va.gov/contact/index.asp
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