Veteran complains of VA Hospital treatment - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Veteran complains of VA Hospital treatment

Willie Nelson is proud of his service to our country. The Vietnam war vet spent 15 years in the Air Force as an Aircraft arresting barrier maintenance man, where he worked near dangerous machinery everyday.

Nelson says, "I was crawling down in a barrier pit and fell, injuring my back and my knees."

An injury that honorably discharged him and placed him within the VA system. And Nelson isn't happy with the service he gets at the Albany VA Clinic.

"I'm being treated like a third world citizen," Nelson said.

The prostate cancer survivor lives in Americus. He says the clinic told him to come to Albany for lab work at a time when the tests couldn't be administered.

"They scheduled me after the lab had closed."

Which means he has to drive back another day.

"That's kind of frustrating because I don't live in Albany, and I have to drive 35 miles."

State Senator Freddie Powell Sims organized a town hall meeting last month to hear complaints from veterans and come up with ways to address them.

Senator Powell-Sims says, "Although we had this meeting the clinic is not servicing the Veterans as they should."

The senator says she found problems were worse than she thought, but she is seeing some improvement.

Many veterans like Willie Nelson say the battle is far from over

"We served our country and the least they can to when we got to the clinic is to give us the 100 percent service that I think we deserve.''

The Senator hopes to have another town hall meeting soon so more veterans can share their experiences.

Copyright 2011 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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