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Veterans celebrate after VA considered shutting down veterans hospital in Muskogee

Posted at 11:01 PM, Jul 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-02 00:01:49-04

TULSA, Okla. — Green country veterans are celebrating Friday outside of the Muskogee Civic Center after the VA decided not to close the veterans clinic in muskogee. The VA recently recommended the hospital close and be turned into a smaller clinic. The move would have required veterans to drive to Tulsa to receive healthcare.

Donald Nichols, with the Military of Purple Hearts Muskogee was among the veterans who were overjoyed by the decision to keep the VA hospital operational. He’s also among those who advocated the strongest green country.

“I felt like it was a miracle that it happened,” Nichols said.

On Monday, the senate veterans affairs committee announced that it would block confirmation by the AIR Commission which was considering closing and privatizing a large portion of the current VA healthcare system. That would essentially close down smaller hospitals and require veterans to travel longer distances to get healthcare.

Nichols says Friday’s celebration is also in honor of everyone who helped advocate for the hospital to stay open.

“Wherever they may be that helped us with it, it gives us the opportunity to say thank you,” Nichols said.

Nichols also said he created a petition and he and his team collected more than 17,000 signatures.

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