VA Maryland Health Care System
New Fort Meade VA Outpatient Clinic Dedication Set
Despite the late season snow fall, more than 100 supporters navigated the tricky weather conditions to the Fort Meade VA Outpatient dedication ceremony on March 25, 2013. The formal dedication of the new 13,000-square-foot facility designed to provide quality health care services to the more than 80,000 Veterans living in Anne Arundel and Howard Counties included a ribbon cutting ceremony with Senators Barbra A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin, Congressmen C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger and John Sarbanes, and VA and Department of Defense (DoD) officials.
"We have a sacred trust with those who have risked their lives so that we may live in freedom. Part of that sacred trust is making sure our Veterans have access to the services and support they have earned and deserve," Senator Mikulski said. "I'm proud to help cut the ribbon on this new state-of-the-art Veteran's clinic at Fort Meade. We owe our Veterans the same quality of service that they gave us. Providing them with quality, competent care ensures that promises made are promises kept."
The new clinic sits adjacent to the Kimbrough Ambulatory Care Center on the Fort George G. Meade garrison and is the sixth community based outpatient clinic throughout the state to be operated by the VA Maryland Health Care System. Designed by Nutec Group of York, PA, in collaboration with the Department of Defense, the facility features 21 spacious exam rooms, one audiology booth, comfortable patient waiting areas, and state-of-the-art medical technology, including heated examination tables.
"We're so excited about this collaboration with the Department of Defense that will enable us to better serve the thousands of Veterans living in Anne Arundel and Howard Counties," says Dennis H. Smith, director of the VA Maryland Health Care System. "It will also enable us to work together to provide a more seamless transition for service men and women who are being discharged from active duty and are in need of VA health care. This clinic is an example of our ongoing commitment to making VA health care more accessible to Veterans where they live and work."
Before the guided tours of the new facility, Veteran Service Organization representatives, DoD officials, VA Maryland Health Care System employees and Veteran outpatients in the audience listened as guests speakers touted the impressive design and accessibility of this new clinic. "As the first VA outpatient clinic in the country to be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certified, the Fort Meade VA Outpatient Clinic will utilize sustainable building design to meet federal green policy requirements, including geothermal mechanical systems, water reducing fixtures, low-emitting window glazing and motion controlled lighting," said Fernando O. Rivera, director of the Capitol Health Care Network. The new facility has incorporated other green design elements such as thermal systems, recycled building materials, and low emitting materials used for the building's interior.
"America's Veterans have made every sacrifice to protect our country and it is our duty as a nation to provide them with the high-quality medical care they have earned," said Congressman Sarbanes. "The new clinic at Fort Meade will increase the availability of care to the local Veteran population and strengthen the network of Veterans' medical services in Maryland."
Services at the Fort Meade VA Outpatient Clinic include general outpatient care, preventive health and education services, various medical screenings, TeleHealth services, and referrals to specialized programs and inpatient services available throughout the VA Maryland Health Care System. "VA clinics are often the first – and sometimes only – option our Veterans have because they are affordable and accessible," Congressman Ruppersberger said. "This clinic is the type of investment we should be making during these tough times to ensure those who have put their lives on the line for our freedom have the best care possible when they return home."
Army Veteran Sheryl Webb, a New York transplant to Maryland after being stationed at Fort Meade during her first tour in her 22-year-long military career, agrees with U.S. Senator Cardin that the new Fort Meade VA Outpatient Clinic makes receiving health care more convenient for Maryland's Veterans. "The new clinic is just seven miles up the road from my house," says Webb. "I'm sure I'll still have to go to the Baltimore VA Medical Center from time to time, but it's really wonderful to have a clinic so much closer to me."
Senator Cardin added, "We made certain promises to our Veterans and we need to keep those promises. It's critical that our Veterans get the health care services they need in a timely, convenient manner and this new community based outpatient clinic will make it much easier for Veterans in Anne Arundel and Howard counties to access the health care services they need."
With plenty of free parking and readily available clinic appointments, Veterans will find the new clinic convenient and accessible. Having this VA clinic on the Fort Meade campus is just the beginning of what I know will be a successful health care partnership. Our shared missions and visions provide a basis to seek common pathways by which we may deliver high quality care to both our Service Members and Veterans," said Colonel Danny B.N. Jaghab, Commander, United States Army Medical Department Activity and Kimbrough Ambulatory Care Center, Fort George G. Meade.
"Having a state-of-the-art facility here that will provide the highest quality care for our Veterans, among them many civilians who work here at Fort Meade, is fantastic. We're excited about having the VA as a new partner here on Fort Meade," said Colonel Edward C. Rothstein, Garrison Commander, Fort George G. Meade.
To schedule a primary care appointment at the new Fort Meade VA Outpatient Clinic, Veterans are encouraged to call the Appointment Call Center for the VA Maryland Health Care System at 1-800-463-6295, ext. 7333.