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Local
NE FL vets with long wait times, issues getting to VA, can receive treatment at local hospital
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NE FL vets with long wait times, issues getting to VA, can receive treatment at local hospital

NE FL vets with long wait times, issues getting to VA, can receive treatment at local hospital
St. Vincent's Clay County

NE FL vets with long wait times, issues getting to VA, can receive treatment at local hospital

Northeast Florida veterans who have wait times of more than 30 days with Veteran Affairs, or have to travel more than 40 miles for care, can receive treatment at a local hospital through a new program.

The Veterans Choice Program allows veterans to receive treatment at any of the St. Vincent’s Health Care locations around Northeast Florida, if they satisfy the program's requirements.

“The angle at St. Vincent’s is simply to serve those who are in need and to serve them in a timely basis, and in the most convenient manner possible,” St. Vincent’s chief operating officer Tom VanOsdol told WOKV. “We know there’s a need and we want to be there to serve those who served us.”

The program is paid for through funding that already supports veteran health care through the VA. The program will end once $10 billion in allocated funds are used or no later than Aug. 7, 2017.

VanOsdol says leadership at St. Vincent’s will reevaluate the program after funding runs out, or the end date is reached, to determine if there is still a need in the area. He says funding can be allocated to support the program if a continued need is found.

“It’s our honor and privilege to participate in this program,” VanOsdol said. 

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The Latest News Headlines

  • It’s news that drivers have been waiting for. The Florida Department of Transportation says northbound lanes of the Overland Bridge are set to open by Saturday morning. They will shift traffic overnight, beginning Friday at 8PM, with the goal of opening the new lanes by 6AM Saturday, weather permitting.  Once the newly rebuilt lanes of the highway are open, that will be how drivers travel to get to the Fuller Warren and beyond. The lanes that currently carry I-95 northbound traffic will convert to serving as dedicated access for Downtown. The existing lanes will not reconnect to the new lanes at Downtown- it will drop all traffic off in Downtown. The FDOT will have new signage up to help drivers navigate the changes. The southbound lanes remain under construction. The FDOT says the overall project is slated for completion in early 2018.
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  • The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office is searching for 28-year-old Tony Torrell Ansley, who has an active warrant for sexual battery and false imprisonment.  Details on the incident Ansley is being sought in connection to haven’t been released by police. JSO says he’s known to frequent the Jacksonville and Orlando areas. Ansley is described as a black man, 6’, 242 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. If you have any information about Ansley’s location, you’re asked to contact JSO at 904-630-0500 or JSOCrimeTips@jaxsheriff.org. You can also submit an anonymous tip and be eligible for a possible $3,000 reward by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.

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