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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

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Nursing home care available to county vets

Friday, June 13, 2014

Franklin County veterans certified as being 70 percent or more disabled can receive free nursing home care at the Virginia Veterans Care Center (VVCC) in Salem.

Patty Smith, admissions director of the center, gave a presentation on the VVCC to members of the Obie D. Minter VFW Post in Snow Creek recently, pointing out that the VVCC is about service to veterans, not making profit, like privately operated facilities.

"Because of this, veterans with limited funds can still get the care they need," Smith said.

The facility can handle up to 240 residents, and there is currently no waiting list.

Smith made several key points during her presentation:

•The VVCC can now accept non-service connected disabled veterans provided they have an Honorable Discharge, are Virginia citizens and their ailments can be treated by the VVCC;

•The current rate for VVCC nursing home care is $223 per day. The VA provides $100 per day, which offsets the cost to $123 out of pocket expense for the veteran;

•Up to 65 percent of patients receive assistance from Medicaid.

Medicaid is not like it was in prior years where individuals had to surrender their homes, vehicles, etc., and it should be explored as an option by those in need of services, Smith said.

"Money is not the driving force behind the VVCC. It is about care for veterans," she said.

Smith also noted that Virginia veterans are entitled to free burial in any of the state's three veteran cemeteries (Dublin, Amelia and Suffolk). Their non-veteran spouses can be interred for $300.

Smith invites all veterans to visit the VVCC for a tour. No appointment is necessary.

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