UT - U.S. reps call for better VA access
Joel Hoffman - n response to a U-T Watchdog report, San Diego congressional representatives are calling on the Department of Veterans Affairs to improve access and transportation to a new clinic in Sorrento Valley.
"While we applaud the addition of this facility to ensure that veterans and their families receive timely health care, it has come to our attention that some veterans seeking care at the Sorrento Valley facility have encountered difficulties accessing the facility due to public transportation shortfalls," wrote Sen. Barbara Boxer, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and San Diego Rep. Scott Peters in a letter to VA Secretary Robert A. McDonald. "Unfortunately, and at great detriment to our veterans, there is no bus service from the Coaster station directly to the Sorrento Valley clinic — a distance of a half mile. For injured and disabled veterans, a walk of this length is unmanageable."
The Watchdog's report found that the clinic was located above a steep driveway off of Sorrento Valley Road, but the VA had opened the clinic without securing a shuttle service for veterans who rely on public transit. There are no stairs or a guardrail along the walkway that climbs up to the clinic.
Boxer, Feinstein and Peters are calling on the VA to immediately address the issue by adding a bus stop in front of the VA and installing stairs and a guard rail.