U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King have sent a letter to Secretary Eric Shinseki of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), which requests that the VA indefinitely extend the Access Received Closer to Home (ARCH) pilot program in Caribou.
“Maine has one of the highest ratios in the nation of veterans to overall population, and in a large, rural state like Maine, it is critically important that the VA goes the extra mile to see that our veterans have access to and receive the treatment they need and deserve,” said Senator Collins.
“For generations, Mainers have proudly and honorably shouldered the heavy responsibility of defending our country, and as a result, our state today is home to more veterans per capita than most other states. It is incumbent upon us to ensure that we provide these men and women the highest quality care and support that our country can offer,” Senator King said.
According to information provided to Senator Collins and the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs by the VA, the three-year ARCH pilot program is scheduled to conclude at the end of the current fiscal year on September 30, 2014. The VA has made no final decision on whether to extend the ARCH program or the services it provides at the five original sites beyond this date