Sen. Warner checks on progress at Hampton VA Medical Center

HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) – Following his third visit to the facility in the past nine months, Sen. Mark Warner says the veterans hospital in Hampton needs to make more progress in reducing wait times.

Warner met Friday afternoon with Hampton VAMC Director Michael Dunfee.

Wait times at Hampton are running at about 23 days for a veteran to see a primary care doctor. The national average for all VA medical centers is 10 days.

“I’m still disappointed,” Warner said, after visiting Hampton in August and then again in November. “940 VA hospitals, we’re still in the bottom five to six percent, in terms of wait times.”

Warner wants a VA “SWAT” team of experts to examine Hampton’s operation and see where improvements can be made. He also wants more data to compare wait times across years and with other VA facilities.

“What I don’t have is the numbers and how we looked in 2013, 2012, and 2011. There are larger facilities in the system, and they have wait times in line with the national average.”

Warner said Hampton is making progress in construction, additional parking, and adding providers.

Dunfee said new clinic space will open in Chesapeake by the end of September, providing more care on the Southside and taking pressure off of Hampton VAMC.

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