VISN 7 serves the ninth largest veteran population with a veteran population of approximately 1.3 million. The VISN encompasses an area containing VA medical centers and outpatient clinics in Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina. Approximately 190,000 unique veterans will be seen in VISN 7 in fiscal year 1999. Veterans are concentrated around moderate to large cities, military bases and along the coastal areas. Smaller concentrations of veterans are located in rural areas, which is considered medically underserved. The VISN spans approximately 79,876 square miles including most of South Carolina, Georgia and Alabama. The counties of southern Georgia, southwestern Alabama and northwestern Georgia are assigned to VISN 8, VISN 16 and VISN 9 respectively.
VISN 7 medical centers are located in: Atlanta, GA; Augusta, GA; Birmingham, Al; Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System (east campus at Tuskegee, AL, west campus at Montgomery, AL); Charleston, SC; Columbia, SC; Dublin, GA; and Tuscaloosa, AL.
VISN 7 Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs) are located in: Albany, GA; Atlanta, GA (Midtown); Columbus, GA; Lawrenceville, GA; Macon, GA; Oakwood, GA; Smyrna, GA; Savannah, GA; Anderson, SC; Beaufort, SC; Florence, SC; Greenville, SC; Myrtle Beach, SC; Orangeburg, SC; Rock Hill, SC; Sumter, SC; Dothan, AL; Florence, AL; Gadsden, AL; Huntsville, AL; Jasper, AL; Madison, AL; and Oxford, AL.
While total veteran population declines from 1994-2005 nationally, VISN 7 has the lowest percentage of decrease when compared to other VISNs. In reviewing the growth in the over-65 population, VISN 7 ranks second highest in percentage of increase. This VISN ranks sixth highest in percentage of patients in the chronic care category. This large increase in the over-65 population coupled with the already high percentage of patients receiving chronic care has resource implications and may affect the type and amount of services offered by the VISN in the future.