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Aug 14, 2009


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Larry Paulson

I use the St. Cloud VA Medical Center for my primary health care. The VA system should be a model for health care reform in this country. I and others spoke to that effect at Rep. Peterson's town hall.

VA health care includes medical centers, outpatient clinics, preventive care, centralized lab testing, mail order prescriptions and computerized medical records. The VA negotiates directly with pharmaceutical companies, so prescription drug costs are much lower than for private health plans. Mental health treatment is also offered at the VA, as is end of life counseling and nursing home care.

The VA serves the health care needs of millions of veterans, many with severe physical and mental disabilities. The VA is there to serve the medical needs of its patients -- not the bottom line of doctors, hospitals, insurance and drug companies.

I hope Rep. Peterson and his colleagues keep that in mind as they work to reform the nation's health care "industry."

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