VA Secretary Bob McDonald, along with other federal, state and local officials, recently cut the ribbon for the much-anticipated official opening and dedication of the Lake Nona VA Hospital near Orlando, Fla.

The medical center’s initial primary care team was activated in February when the facility’s doors were first opened for patients. Over the past few months, the hospital has added four more primary care teams and other services, including audiology, dental, and eye clinics.

Plans are for the medical center to be fully functional by the end of the year. The facility is part of a medical community on the banks of picturesque Lake Nona. It is the first new VA medical center to open in Florida in nearly 20 years. It will include a large specialty outpatient clinic,134-inpatient bends, 120-community living center beds and a 60-bed domiciliary on the 65-acre campus in southeast Orange County.

During the dedication ceremony McDonald stressed the value of updating and maintaining the infrastructure of the VA hospital system.

“We need to build the infrastructure for the VA care and community care today that we need when the veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan age,” McDonald said.

The new Lake Nona VA Hospital will be the base of that infrastructure of in-patient and community-based outpatient care for more than 400,000 Veterans living in central Florida now and for years to come.

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