VA Puget Sound to open new clinics, including one in Olympia

By Abbie Shull

The News Tribune

The VA Puget Sound Health Care System will open four new clinics in 2021, including two micro-clinics in Olympia and Puyallup, but three of the region’s clinics will close this winter.

Clinics in Lake City, Federal Way and Bellevue will close Jan. 31, 2021. According to a statement from VA Puget Sound, the clinics are operated as part of a contract with Valor Healthcare and the contract is not being renewed.

Three micro-clinics are set to open by April 2021 in Olympia, Puyallup and Edmonds. Those clinics will serve around 11,000 veterans. Services at the micro clinics will include primary care, mental health care, social work, pharmacy, telemedicine and nutrition. Exact locations have not been determined.

The VA Puget Sound said in a statement that virtual teams will help fill the gaps in all of those services during the months between the closure of the Valor Healthcare clinics and the opening of the micro-clinics.

VA Puget Sound director Michael Tadych said the new clinics are offering expanded primary care services intended to better carry out the Mission Act. Passed by Congress in 2018, the Mission Act was designed to give veterans better access to care — including providers who are not a part of the VA system.

The VA Puget Sound services 155,000 veterans across western Washington and operates two campuses at American Lake, in Lakewood, and Beacon Hill, in Seattle, as well as seven clinics across the region.