VA official: Recruitment a challenge in Alaska

The chief of staff for the Alaska Veterans Affairs Health Care System says recruitment of doctors and nurses is one of the biggest challenges it faces.

But Cynthia Joe says those limitations aren’t exclusive to the VA in Alaska. She says no matter who you are or what benefits you have, access to care can be a challenge in the state.

Joe was in Juneau on Thursday, visiting the VA clinic. The facility has traditional exam rooms but also space for tele-health consultations, in which doctors at remote sites can provide mental health and other types of care.

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski has expressed concern with staffing at the VA clinic in Wasilla and asked the VA’s inspector general to look into the quality of care provided there.