EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The Mission Act was implemented in June of 2019 that allows veterans to receive care at urgent and walk-in health care clinics in the Borderland. Something the Department of Veteran Affairs is calling “community care.”
It gives veterans a more convenient way to access treatment within the community at clinics for minor injuries and illnesses such as colds, strep throat and pink eye.
“Once they know about it, it just gives them another option to be able to get access quickly for stuff that’s non-emergency. For colds, or if they get cut or need to be sown up, or have a fall or anything like that. It gives them quicker access rather than going to the emergency rooms,” said Cody Hawkes a Physicians Assistant.
According to Hawkes, this is important because it helps Veterans feel comfortable which can then lead to them getting small ailments checked out sooner. Since the Mission Act went into effect on June 6, Borderland walk-in clinics have already seen an increase in veterans coming in for care.
“We’ve had a few people who’ve come in who just saw online that the VA had done this and they came in just more surprised than anything else that it was available to them,” said Hawkes. “The only bad decision is not making the decision to go.”
Community care is now available for Veterans who are enrolled in the VA Nationwide. However, they must first receive approval from the VA before receiving community care. According to the VA eligibility depends on the veterans individual health care needs.