Syracuse VA Medical Center Expands North Country Home Based Primary Care - Syracuse VA Medical Center
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Syracuse VA Medical Center


Syracuse VA Medical Center Expands North Country Home Based Primary Care

May 29, 2015

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Robert McLean, VAMC PAO
315-425-2422 (O) 315-956-1394 Mobile


Syracuse, NY- Grants, totaling more than $2.3 million by the VA’s Office of Rural Health in Washington for FY-15, are allowing the Syracuse VA Medical Center to substantially expand services to Veterans in the North County. 

The larger of the grants provides funding for the creation of a new Home Based Primary Care (HBPC) team based in Watertown to serve the entire North Country.  The Syracuse VA is using these funds to hire a full time staff dedicated to serving rural and highly rural North Country Veterans in need of in-home care. 

The HBPC program will serve Veterans with chronic and disabling conditions who need more care than periodic doctor visits in an office setting.  The main goal of the program is improve or maintain Veterans’ health status and quality of life by providing health care (including behavioral health care) and prevention services, ongoing monitoring of health care status, and timely intervention. 

The HBPC team consists of a Physician, Nurse Practitioner, Psychologist, Registered Nurses as well as LPN’s, a Physical Therapist and a Speech Therapist.  The team will also include a Medical Social Worker, Dietician support and a Clinical Pharmacist.  

“The Veterans residing in the highly rural areas of Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties are isolated by extreme weather and geography.  The VA’s ability to provide home care to this population may be the only option many of these Veterans have for medical and mental health care. The HBPC program’s goal is to provide services to Veteran’s with barriers to access.  The team members are familiar with the rural counties and climate and are anxious to extend their services, offering consistent health monitoring, clinical care and supportive services,” said Kathy Gorman, HBPC Program Director.

A second grant will provide FY-15 funding to expand VA Behavioral Health Services in Watertown.  Plans call for the hiring of a total of 6 new behavioral health professionals. 

Nearly 6,500 Veterans in St. Lawrence, Jefferson and Lewis Counties are enrolled in VA healthcare for primary and specialty care.  Many of these Veterans will benefit from the option of Home Based care which supports the need for VA services in the Veteran’s homes.

Recruiting of healthcare professionals to fill these new positions is currently underway.

Veterans who think they would be a good candidate for the HBPC program as well as anyone interested in the Nurse Practitioner, Psychologist, RN, or LPN positions is encouraged to contact the HBPC Program at (315) 425-4301.  Interested individuals can also log onto  where these positions can be found by selecting Watertown, NY.