The VA of Nebraska-western Iowa plans to add 16 additional personnel to provide mental health care to veterans.
It’s part of a nationwide initiative by the VA to add 1,600 mental health clinicians nationwide.
VA of Nebraska-western Iowa spokesman Will Ackerman says the new positions will help to expand mental health care services the hospital and clinics already provide. "With the end of the Iraq war this last year and with the drawdown of Afghanistan in coming years, and just seeing veterans from even some previous eras such as Vietnam coming in for services, there’s an important need to be able to provide these services to our veterans."
Ackerman says among the goals are to provide more mental health clinicians for rural health care and tele-medicine. He says more than 55 percent of the veterans served by the VA of Nebraska-western Iowa live in rural areas.
The 16 employees will join 106 staff who already provide mental health care services to veterans in the Nebraska-western Iowa system.