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Central Georgia's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports, and more | Macon, Georgia | 13WMAZ.com

Carl Vinson VA Medical Center in Dublin moving to Phase 3 of reopening

Phase Three includes new technology and allowing veterans to have visitors.

DUBLIN, Ga. — Veterans across Central Georgia will have more access to in-person health care as the Carl Vinson Medical Center prepares to enter phase three of reopening on October 19. 

Back in June, 13WMAZ reported the Dublin VA would begin a gradual reopening process.

"It's been sort of rough, but I'm coping with it," Airforce Veteran Roosevelt Roberson said.

Since March 14, veterans who call the Dublin VA home have not been able to see their loved ones. 

"I call all my sisters, brothers and my wife, my daughter and granddaughters, I call them about every day," Roberson said. 

Roberson and other veterans will be allowed to see their family members as part of phase three of the Dublin VA reopening, which is scheduled to start on Monday, October 19.

"Family members meeting with their veterans in the open courtyard area of each of their respective community living centers," Medical Center Director David Whitmer said.

Whitmer added visits will include social distancing, plexiglass and a caregiver being present to make sure the rules are being followed. Phase three also means more in-person medical visits for veterans. 

"We can have up to 75% of our appointments face-to-face, primary care, specialty care, things like cardiology, radiology, podiatry those will have more of those appointments," Whitmer said. 

The new phase also comes with new technology to detect the temperature of people entering the building.

"What we have in here is a body recapture scanner, it is just going to speed up the process with veterans trying to gain access to the hospital," Customer Service Manager Vashon Brown said.

There are three scanners on the campus that can alert employees if someone's temperature is too high. Everyone entering is asked a series of questions and required to sanitize their hands. 

Whitmer added that the VA took a look at local COVID-19 cases and cases in their own facility when making the decision on reopening or not.