Williston’s new VA clinic has only been open for two days. And William Wood has been there for both of them.
His first impression?
“Really nice, really good. A lot of good seats,” says Wood, an Army veteran.
Wood was one of 113 veterans who walked through the doors of the VA clinic for a first look on its opening day Monday.
“We’re excited. Everybody has so much energy. And they’re so excited to serve the veterans in a big facility that’s new and has all the technology we need,” says clinic manager, Danielle Engberg.
The clinic features more patient rooms for treatment, including one specifically dedicated to female veterans. There are also expanded telehealth options and a full-time medical doctor on staff-
one who has his own personal experience with the VA system.
“My dad was a veteran. He was in World War II, he was in the Marine Corps. Throughout my youth, childhood, I kind of grew up in the VA system,” says family practice medical director, David Keene. “I thought I’ll be helpful working in this area because they never did really have a concrete provider that would be here consistently for them and I think I can provide that for them,” says Keene.
But for all its new features, Wood says he’ll enjoy the same thing he did about the last clinic-
That’s a sentiment echoed by Corey Moen, Commander of VFW Post 12169 and Adjutant for the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 9. “A building doesn’t make a clinic,” says Moen. “The staff that is there is an exceptional staff. You know they’re putting their whole heart behind their skills,” he says.
“Veterans are seeing the same faces and the same faces they’re comfortable with,” explains Engberg.
And that’s welcome news for Wood, who says he enjoys the camaraderie he shares with them.
“Like I say, if you can’t have fun and make people laugh, life ain’t worth living,” says Wood.
And you can be sure he’ll be making a return visit to the new clinic soon.
A new VA clinic has also opened in Dickinson. Both clinics are contractor-owned and operated by STG International, Inc.