VA Black Hills Health Care System Future Update
Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki responds to letters from the SD, NE and WY delegation regarding the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) proposal for the VA Black Hills Health Care System.
Read the October 2 response letter and the October 24 response letter.
New information will be posted to this site as it becomes available.
In the meantime, if you have input or wish to share information with VA BHHCS leaders, you can email them at VABlackHillsFuture@va.gov or you can mail your comments to:
VA Black Hills Health Care system
113 Comanche Road
Fort Meade, South Dakota 57747
Original VA BHHCS Proposal for
Improvements and Reconfiguration of Services
The Department of Veterans Affairs VA Black Hills Health Care System (VABHHCS) is committed to providing high-quality health care to the Veterans in western South Dakota, northwestern Nebraska and eastern Wyoming. We have conducted a thorough review of the services provided in this region and believe that improvements and reconfigurations are needed to increase the scope of health care services that will be provided to Veterans at points of care closer to their homes.
VABHHCS proposes a reconfiguration of existing services and an expansion of the points of access to health care and maintain the quality of that care so as to better serve Veterans throughout the coverage area. The overall goal is to realign services and resources to provide high quality, safe, cost effective care closer to where Veterans live.
At Hot Springs:
- Reconfigure services by closing the inpatient and nursing home units, the operating rooms and urgent care facilities
- These services would then be purchased at Fall River Hospital and other community hospitals closer to Veterans’ homes
- Gradually reduce the number of VA employees in Hot Springs; no VA employees will lose their jobs
- Build a new Community Based Outpatient Clinic with a dialysis unit either co-located with the Fall River Hospital or the State Veterans Home, or free-standing
- Buy pharmacy, laboratory and x-ray services at Fall River Hospital
In Rapid City:
- Build or lease a new clinic site that will increase our capacity for Veterans by 35% and add x-ray, lab, pharmacy and physical therapy departments
- Build a new Domiciliary (now called a Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program - RRTP) to replace the existing Hot Springs facility; may be co-located with the new clinic
- Veterans in this program will benefit from increased access to occupational training, state-of-the-art neighborhood-like facilities and access to job sites and other community services. A new RRTP would also be designed to accommodate more female Veterans and single-parent Veterans with children.
At Fort Meade:
- Build new Operating Rooms to improve our ability to provide excellent surgical care with state of the art, technologically-advanced operating rooms and support facilities
- Renovate the existing inpatient medicine/surgery unit, relocate the intensive care unit, and build a new sterile supplies processing unit.
Throughout our area of coverage:
- Expand our partnerships with our community health care partners
- Buy more inpatient and outpatient healthcare services in or near Veterans’ hometowns; reduce the distance Veterans travel to obtain services and reduce Veterans’ personal out-of-pocket expenses for travel
- Expand the use of VA nurses as case management and care coordination resources
- Veterans who already receive care at our VA clinics at Hot Springs, Rapid City or Fort Meade are being cared for by our Patient Aligned Care Teams members, including a primary care provider (a physician, nurse practitioner or physician assistant) and their support staff
- Veterans who do not receive day-to-day care at one of our VA sites will have a VA nurse to help with referrals for VA and non-VA care and questions and concerns.
How this would be done:
- Through a phased transition of services reaching from 1 – 5 years
Years 1 – 2
- Buy inpatient, nursing home, and urgent care services at Fall River Hospital in Hot Springs and other community hospitals
- Prepare for Domiciliary move to Rapid City; build new facility if approved
- Build a new VA-staffed clinic in Hot Springs
Years 2 – 4
- Occupy the new Hot Springs clinic
- Buy inpatient, nursing home, urgent care services lab, pharmacy, X-ray from Fall River Hospital and other community hospitals
- Explore opportunity for repurposed Hot Springs buildings through public, private, and non-profit partnerships; maintain in compliance with National Landmark Status
Information on Historic Landmark
Battle Mountain Santarium Historic Preservation
Get more information about VA Black Hills Future:
Secretary of the VA Response to SD delegation letter of Oct. 2nd pdf file
Secretary of the VA Response to SD delegation letter of Oct. 24th pdf file
October 12, 2012 Update
VA Black Hills Financial Analysis pdf file
dated June 6, 2012
VA Releases Financial Analysis on Future Proposals - U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Veterans Integrated Service Network (VISN) 23 and VA Black Hills Health Care System released the financial analysis on the proposed reconfiguration of health care services in western South Dakota and parts of Nebraska and Wyoming. (06/12/2012)
Historic Landmark Plaque Presented - Vidal Davila, Superintendent, Wind Cave National Park, presented the plaque on behalf of the National Park Service. Judy Johnson-Mekota, Deputy Director of the VA Midwest Health Care Network and Bill Baker, Acting Associate Director/Chief, Facilities Management of the VA Black Hills Health Care System accepted the award. (06/01/2012)
Additional VA BHHCS Future Pages:
Frequently Asked Questions
You'll find asnwers to the most commonly asked questions on our FAQ page.
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Attn: Directors Office
113 Comanche Road
Fort Meade, SD 57747
Attn: Director's Office
500 North 5th Street
Hot Springs, SD 57747
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