Access to care and services is readily available to veterans in the Coachella Valley with the presence of a Mobile Vet Center.
The traveling center, which makes routine stops in Palm Springs, Indio and Hemet, helps increase access to readjustment counseling services for veterans and their families in rural and underserved communities across the country.
This customized vehicle – which is equipped with confidential counseling space and a state-of-the-art communication package—travels to the various communities to extend VA’s reach to veterans, servicemembers and their families, especially those living in rural or remote communities, according to the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
The vehicle also serves as part of the VA emergency response program. There are at least 70 such vehicles in the country. Five years ago, 20 new mobile centers were added in the Continental United States, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, according to VA.
Mobile Vet units are equipped as “offices on wheels,” with the capacity to provide emergency support for natural disasters. Each motor coach houses a satellite dish that connects to communications and audio-visual equipment, six phone lines, a fax line, notebook computers, four encrypted computer lines and a wireless network.
In fiscal year 2011, the most recent year for which statistics are available, Mobile Vet Centers participated in more than 3,600 federal, state and locally sponsored Veteran-related events.
VA has 300 permanent Vet Centers serving communities across the country, offering:
- Individual and group counseling for Veterans and their families
- Family counseling for military related issues
- Bereavement counseling for families who experience an active duty death
- Military sexual trauma counseling and referral
- Outreach and education
- Substance abuse assessment and referral
- Employment assessment and referral
- VA benefits explanation and referral
- Screening and referral for medical issues including traumatic brain injury and depression.