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Brainerd VA clinic adds services for veterans

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Wadena, 56482

Wadena Minnesota 314 S. Jefferson, P.O. Box 31 56482

The Brainerd VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic is adding services for veterans with the addition of X-rays exams and site visits of the Mobile Audiology Clinic. The new x-ray machine was installed in December, and the Mobile Audiology Clinic made its inaugural visit to the Brainerd CBOC on Feb. 22.

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"Having these services available at the clinic will help us to better serve veterans," said Jo Ann Stradtmann, RN, Nurse Manager at the Brainerd VA Clinic. "Veterans should no longer need to travel to St. Cloud for x-rays and audiology exams."

The Mobile Audiology Clinic will help fill a critical need of veterans throughout central Minnesota. Staffed with two Audiologists, the mobile clinic will travel to VA Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs) in Brainerd and other locations, delivering audiology services closer to veterans' homes.

Current plans call for the mobile clinic to visit Brainerd at least one week per month.

Audiology appointments for veterans at the mobile clinic will be scheduled through the St. Cloud VA's normal scheduling process, said Alan Sias, an audiologist overseeing the mobile clinic. The St. Cloud VA Audiology Clinic can be reached at (320) 255-6370, or (800) 247-1739, ext. 6370.

"Audiology services are in high demand by veterans," said Sias. "Hearing loss and ringing in the ears are the two highest claimed conditions for service connected disability. We anticipate that demand for audiology services will increase as the mobile clinic moves around central Minnesota."

The mobile clinic features a double-walled audio booth and equipment that allows the audiologist to perform complete hearing evaluations, hearing aid fittings, and post fitting appointments. All of the audiology equipment, such as an audiometer and tympanometer, is brand-new and state-of-the-art. The mobile clinic is also equipped with a wheel chair lift, making it accessible for handicapped veterans.

The mobile clinic was funded by a grant from the VHA's Office of Rural Health.

All veterans are encouraged to apply for VA health care benefits. Veterans suffering from hearing loss as a result of military service should file a disability claim with the VA.

Information on filing disability claims and applying for VA health care benefits is available in every Minnesota County through the County Veteran Service Office.

Please see your local county veterans service officer if you have any questions. You can contact your local VSO at (218) 631-7617 or by e-mail at david.anderson@co.wadena.mn.us. As always, have a great week.

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