Respect and appreciation for veterans

Dear Editor:

As we approach a very important holiday on November 11, 2017, Veterans Day, we want to share our utmost respect and appreciation for each and every Veteran we are privileged to serve.

at the Aleda E. Lutz VA Medical Center and Healthcare Annex in Saginaw, and Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOC) in Alpena, Bad Axe, Cadillac, Cheboygan County, Clare, Gaylord, Grayling, Oscoda, and Traverse City.  VA employees take great pride in serving Veterans and their families and show this through their values of ICARE (Integrity, Commitment, Advocacy, Respect, and Excellence).

Veterans Day has been set aside each year to pause and remember the many sacrifices made by Veterans.

We provided care to 36,331 Veterans, of which 1,915 are women, in a 35-county catchment area, contributing to 422,849 Outpatient Visits and 973 Admissions during our Fiscal Year 2017 (October 1, 2016 – September 30, 2017).

Our VA implemented a designated smoking area for our outpatient Veterans and visitors, and no longer allow smoking for Veterans who are admitted.

We completed infrastructure projects which included a redesign of parking lots, repaving, covered walkways, and a beautiful new four-season activities pavilion for Veterans and visitors to enjoy.

We are completely reconstructing our Sterile Processing Service.

Our access for outpatient medical care continues to be evaluated and improvements made wherever possible.

Our VA engaged in over 120 community events or speaking engagements this year, and serves alongside several community agencies to support Veterans with resources the VA may not have at the ready.

We held quarterly Veteran Community Town Halls throughout the State this past year and heard first hand from Veterans, their family members, and others, the good and the bad.   We plan to hold quarterly Town Halls in additional cities in our primary service area this year as well.

This is only a brief snapshot of the great things happening at the VA and clinics throughout Michigan.

I want to personally take this opportunity to reach out to Veterans and their families and welcome them to any one of our VA facilities.  We encourage individuals to visit www.ebenefits.va.gov or call 1-800-406-5143, extension 13120 or 13121 to ask for an enrollment packet.  We also welcome you to visit our website at www.saginaw.va.gov to learn more about your hometown VA.

Happy Veterans Day to each and every Veteran, and if you receive your care with us, thank you!  We are proud to serve those who have served!!!

With My Gratitude,
Ginny Creasman, Medical Center Director, Aleda E. Lutz VA Medical Center, Saginaw, MI

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