The Asset and Infrastructure review process determined their recommendations for entire the Veterans Administration Health Care system which includes the St. Cloud V.A. Barry Venable is the Public Affairs Officer for the St. Cloud V.A.  He says for the past 3 to 4 years the V.A. has been conducting research to determine the asset and infrastructure situation within the V.A. system.  Venable says the Asset Infrastructure Review is a study of the current and future health care needs for veterans.

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Venable says the findings determined the following recommendations for the St. Cloud V.A.  He says the current buildings which many were built in 1923 were determined to not meet modern health care standards.  In which case the recommendation is to modernize the outpatient space at the St. Cloud V.A.  He says the market assessment team determined that it is more cost effective to build new structures as opposed to rehabilitate old ones.  Venable says they are fortunate in St. Cloud to have a 224 acre campus to build new structures.  The other recommendation is to modernize the community living center, which is a skilled nursing facility.  Venable says it is a large facility with 225 beds with demand for those services expected to remain high.  He says because of this demand the recommendation is to build a new CLC structure.  Venable says it is also recommended to build a new modernized residential, rehabilitation and treatment program structure.

Venable says the St. Cloud V.A. operates in 27 counties in central and west central Minnesota.  The recommendation is also to establish two new outpatient clients in Cambridge and Litchfield.  These would be similar to the outpatient clinics that currently operate in Brainerd, Alexandria and Montevideo.  Venable says all of this is good news for veterans, St. Cloud V.A. employees and all communities involved.

Venable says this is only a beginning of a large time consuming process that will take many years if these recommendations are adopted.  He says these recommendations for the 171 V.A. facilities involved throughout the country were submitted to the Presidential appointed asset infrastructure review commission who will study them for the next year.  Venable says the entire project across the nation is an over $2 Trillion dollar project.  He says these recommendations would take over decades to be implemented.  All dollars for these projects comes from the Federal Government V.A. administration.

Venable says they do not know what would become of the old buildings once/if new structures are built.

If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Barry Venable it is available below.

 

 

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