New VA Clinic will keep veterans close to home

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Columbus and surrounding area veterans have a new and much bigger clinic to get care. And the new center will save patients time and money because they will not have to travel to get certain types of care.

The new Chalmers P. Wylie Veterans Affairs Ambulatory Care Center on North James Road is almost three times the size of the current clinic. It’s 295,000 square feet will serve more than 250,000 area veterans. Rick Isbell, Veterans’ Affairs Coordinator for Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman said the new care clinic was much needed.

“It took a lot of fighting to get this to happen because we already had another smaller clinic but we’d outgrown it the day we opened the doors,” Isbell said.

Although the new clinic is not a hospital, Isbell said there is the option to turn it into one some day. He said it was built to accommodate expansions. Isbell said currently many area vets have to go to other locations to receive certain care. He said the new center will keep patients here.

“There will be a prosthetics lab here within the VA so they can actually make the arms and legs and whatever is needed. Where before we had to send out to have them done where we can make them here in Columbus. Another thing that we have here is a lot of more X-ray machines, our own MRIs. Things that before we could have to send somebody to another hospital,” Isbell said.

The new clinic cost $95 million. It will open November 12.