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ATLAS pod coming to Emporia to serve rural veterans

(Joseph Hennessy)
Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 4:58 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Senator Jerry Moran and Representative Tracey Mann applauded the announcement of a VA telehealth pod coming to Emporia to serve rural veterans.

Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) says he and Rep. Tracey Mann (R-KS01) were relieved with the announcement of American Legion Commander Bill Oxford that a VA telehealth pod will be sent to Emporia to give healthcare services to rural and medically underserved veterans. He said the pod is expected to open by the summer of 2021 as part of the VA’s Accessing Telehealth through Local Area Stations initiative. He said the ATLAS pod will be equipped with technology that will allow veterans to connect with their healthcare providers.

“As the first location in Kansas, this ATLAS pod will increase our veterans’ access to health care services, especially for those living far from VA facilities,” said Sen. Moran. “This technology will also provide an important access point for VA mental health and suicide prevention programs for Kansas veterans. Thank you to The American Legion for providing a familiar venue for this technology, Philips for facilitating the technology needed for this community-based telehealth solution and other VA ATLAS partners for working to make certain our nation’s veterans can receive quality care no matter where they live.”

In 2019, Sen. Moran said he hand-delivered a request to the VA Secretary while visiting the VA Medical Center in Topeka that asked him to consider Kansas for the ATLAS program. Since then, he said he has worked closely with the VA to establish an ATLAS pod in the Sunflower state.

“I was thrilled to hear during the Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint hearing that the VA is going to be placing an ATLAS site in Emporia,” said Rep. Mann. “The Big First has 63 of 105 counties, and many of those areas are rural. Telehealth and convenient access to health care are imperative to the health of the First District. Thanks to Senator Moran’s leadership on the Senate VA Committee, Kansas veterans will have access to better care through the VA and its partners. As a member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, I am a strong advocate for our nation’s heroes.”

Moran said Commander Oxford made the announcement during a joint House and Senate Veterans’ Affairs hearing.

To view the hearing, click here.

For more information regarding ATLAS, click here.

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