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POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) — A larger U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs clinic has opened in eastern Idaho that will enable it to serve up to a 1,000 more veterans than before.

The opening of the clinic in Pocatello was celebrated on Wednesday, but it began serving veterans last month, the Idaho State Journal reported ( ).

The new facility, which is part of the VA Salt Lake City Health Care System, is three times larger than the previous building where the clinic was housed for the last 15 years.

“This has been a work in progress for many years, and I’m so glad it’s finally here,” said Shella Stovall, the director of the health care system. “The opening of this outstanding facility just reaffirms our commitment to our veterans.”

The new facility would accommodate the increasing number of veterans in the area, said Ricky Poisel, an Army veteran. It also would reduce the number of trips they have to take to Salt Lake City for treatment, he said.

“The old clinic had reached its growing potential and was starting to burst at the seams,” Poisel said. “The new clinic has plenty of room to grow and expand to the changing needs of area veterans.”

The facility is using the Patient Aligned Care Team model that focuses on providing veterans personalized care. Each patient is assigned a small team consisting of a care provider, a registered nurse, a licensed practical nurse and a scheduling consultant.

About 5,700 patients are currently enrolled at the clinic, and the new facility offers expanded services, VA officials said. The clinic’s services include primary care, health screenings, pharmaceutical services and mental health counseling.


Information from: Idaho State Journal,