ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46 )-- The drive from Commerce, Georgia to Metro Atlanta can sometimes take hours, and despite not having transportation, a Vietnam vet says the VA keeps giving him out-of-town doctor appointments.
“I can’t get someone to drive me, I can’t go” says veteran Fred Herrold.
Herrold and his family reached out to CBS46 in desperation saying his doctor’s appointments are way too far away.
“The last one was in Stockbridge. That’s 82 miles one way. He’s incontinent, he has dementia, and he can’t walk," says Herrold’s wife Patricia.
Patricia says after CBS46 reached out, VA medical division agreed to provide home health aids but the benefits division has not been very helpful. In fact, she says they agreed to have a shuttle pick Fred up and take him to his appointments, but quickly canceled the plan after finding out more about his condition.
“They said he has dementia and I said yes, and they said the driver is just going to drop him off and he’s on his own to go. I said you can’t do that he’s 77-years-old, he doesn’t know where he’s going and how to get there, he’ll sit there all day,” explained Patricia.
With no way to get to his compensation benefit doctor’s appointments Fred has been unable to adjust his claim for financial benefits or receive help getting other services like a handi-accessibly shower.
“ I’ve fallen out of the shower twice now and they’re talking about putting in a stand up shower for me. I’m still waiting. I don’t know what their problem is, my condition has not changed but they promised a lot of things that don’t happen” added Herrold.
A VA Benefits representative sent us a statement saying, “The premise of our inquiry is false and Mr. Herrold has been receiving 100 percent service-connected disabled since 1999 and his additional claims are not supported by federal law.”
In the meantime, Fred, who received a bronze star for his efforts in as a medic in Vietnam, sits and hopes for the best. But there is a silver lining, VA Medical has been helpful. They sent us a statement saying they are committed to continuously improving patient care and they are "confident we will successfully resolve the issue for the veterans."