Eric K. Shinseki, the U.S. secretary of Veterans Affairs, toured VA facilities in Mankato this morning to learn more about ways to expand health care in rural areas.
He was with U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, who’s seeking re-election to his southern Minnesota congressional seat.
They visited the VA’s Mankato Community-Based Outpatient Clinic and the Radichel Townhomes, which provide long-term supportive housing for disabled homeless veterans.
Walz noted that many vets in rural areas have trouble finding VA care, and the he’s glad Shinseki is working to expand access outside the metro area. They found Lyle Pearson, 89, of North Mankato, a POW during World War II who finds it hard to travel to Minneapolis for care these days. He’s looking forward to primary care being offered at the Mankato outpatient clinic, so he won’t have to go so far and be away from his ailing wife when he needs medical care.