Veteran caregivers enrolled in the Veterans Administration’s (VA) caregiver program will likely be able to receive COVID-19 vaccinations through their local VA medical center.

It’s estimated there are more than 5.5 million veteran caregivers nationwide.

The VA is currently prioritizing vaccine doses for veterans living in long-term care facilities and for its health-care workers.

Dr. Richard Stone, executive in charge of the Veterans Health Administration, said the VA has opened its doors to civilians since the start of the pandemic.

“We have provided support in both acute-care institutions as well as opening the doors of our 175 medical centers to caring for critically ill patients,” Stone explained.

Arkansas VA Medical Centers which have received limited COVID-19 vaccine supplies so far include the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks in Fayetteville and the Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care System in North Little Rock.

Stone also noted the VA has lent support to nursing homes across the country, despite struggling with COVID outbreaks in its facilities.

“As well as to provide even nursing care or additional support staff that have been in those civilian nursing homes,” Stone remarked. “We’ve also extended that to Native Americans through providing support to Indian Health Service.”

So far, more than 60,000 veterans residing in VA long-term care facilities and more than 180,000 health-care employees have received vaccine shots.

Veterans, caregivers or family members can go to va.gov or contact their local VA medical center for more information on the vaccine rollout.

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