WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, Congressmen Steny H. Hoyer and Anthony Brown (all D-Md.), and Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks today announced that they successfully secured authorization and funding to upgrade the Prince George’s County veterans clinic, operated by the Veterans Health Administration, in a bill released by the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.
The Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics Act (PACT Act), which is expected to be considered by the U.S. Senate in the coming weeks, is comprehensive, bipartisan legislation led by the Chairman of the Veterans Affairs Committee, Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Ranking Member Jerry Moran (R-Kan.). The bill provides healthcare benefits for all generations of toxic-exposed veterans for the first time in the nation’s history. The Maryland lawmakers fought to include authorization for a new Prince George’s County CBOC lease as well as an initial $32 million in funding for the CBOC. The new facility will expand the outpatient services currently provided at the existing Southern Prince George’s County and Southeast D.C. CBOCs for Maryland veterans.
“It is critical that our veterans have access to top-notch health care services in a timely and convenient manner. They have served this country on the battlefield and it’s our time to repay that debt here at home,” said Senator Cardin. “Expanding the capabilities of the Community Based Outpatient Clinic available to veterans in Prince George’s County and the region will be a game-changer, bringing an array of state-of-the-art health care services within easier reach. This is an important starting point for our veterans in Northern Prince George’s County. Team Maryland will continue to fight for more resources and facilities in this region.”
”We’ve got to keep our promises to veterans who put themselves at risk to serve our country, and that includes ensuring they have access to high-quality health care. That’s why I worked alongside my colleagues from both parties on the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee to secure funding for this enhanced Prince George’s County outpatient clinic that will help deliver much-needed services to our local veterans. I know from my earliest conversations with County Executive Alsobrooks that a better-equipped clinic has been a top priority for the County, so I’m glad we are able to deliver on it. This is a big win for our community and a critical step forward in improving the network of care for veterans across our state. We’ll be fighting to ensure this legislation – which also includes a historic investment in care and benefits for veterans exposed to toxins – is signed into law,” said Senator Van Hollen.
“Our veterans are our heroes and they deserve quality care,” said Congressman Hoyer. “This legislation would strengthen the delivery of health care and provide much-needed upgrades to the current Community Based Outpatient Clinic in Prince George’s County. We owe it to our veterans to provide them with the best possible health care services and benefits they have earned. I join in applauding this bipartisan legislation and am hopeful it will be sent to President Biden for his signature and enacted into law.”
“We make a sacred promise to our servicemembers when they return home – to provide our veterans with the best health care our country has to offer. Critical to upholding that promise, is a commitment to access in the communities our veterans live in,” said Congressman Anthony Brown. “This clinic in Prince George’s will help meet our veterans where they are and provide the quality care that they deserve. We’ll never stop fighting for the brave men and women who have served and we’ll always have their backs.”
“I want to thank Senator Van Hollen and the members of our Federal Delegation for pushing forward this important legislation. Prince George’s County is home to more than 60,000 veterans, the highest number in our state, and we must continue to do all we can to ensure that they have access to the quality healthcare they need and deserve. Upgrading our current CBOC will ensure that they can receive that care close to home in a facility with all the resources they need for high quality, comprehensive healthcare,” said Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks.
This legislation provides for a lease of an approximately 85,116 square foot outpatient clinic in the vicinity of Prince George’s County, including 600 parking spaces. The new facility would enable VA to accommodate the workload that the Southern Prince George’s County and Southeast D.C. CBOCs currently service, which has increased since the closure of the Greenbelt CBOC in 2015, and allow more patients to receive care closer to their homes. It will also facilitate the full implementation of the Patient Aligned Care Team (PACT) model of care delivery, improving operational efficiencies and the Veteran experience. This CBOC will be a state-of-the-art, energy-efficient health care facility offering primary care, mental health, specialty care, and ancillary services to veterans in the Prince George’s County area.