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Federal report proposes changes to Albany, and Dutchess County VA facilities

Mar 20, 2022 12:30 am

Justin Dawes is reporting for the Albany Business Review a federal report released last week by the Veterans Administration included a number of proposed changes for veterans health-care services in the Capital Region totaling $1.5 billion. The plan calls for the closing of Albany Stratton VA Medical Center after the construction of a new hospital. Albany Stratton was last renovated in 1985. The VA says the building’s infrastructure and layout do not meet modern health care standards, and it would take more than $222 million for a full upgrade. The replacement facility would offer inpatient mental health, nursing home, rehab program, urgent care, primary care, outpatient specialty care and outpatient mental health services. The federal Asset and Infrastructure Review report said the existing hospital, located between Holland and New Scotland avenues near Albany Medical Center, would be shut down after "the realignment of services to the new Albany [VA Medical Center].” The new facility would consolidate the clinical services currently located in Clifton Park, Troy and Schenectady, as well. Meanwhile, Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan is upset that the VA also recommended closing the Castle Point VA Medical Center in Wappingers Falls in Dutchess County. Ryan wrote on Twitter that, "tens of thousands of veterans and military families rely on" the facility. "This is unacceptable and we are rallying to push back on these recommendations and push for real investment in strengthening our regional VA services," Ryan wrote, about a March 19 rally at the Ulster County Office Building about the proposed closure. Rep. Antonio Delgado and state Sen. Michelle Hinchey attended the rally, the Times Union reports. “Closing the Castle Point VAMC without first clearly establishing a replacement facility that provides equally accessible services of the same or higher quality is unacceptable,” Delgado said. Read more in the Albany Business Review.

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