September 03, 2020
WASHINGTON — Today, Maine congressional delegation announced that the VA has approved the construction of a new 24-bed program requested by the members of Congress to provide residential substance use disorder rehabilitation and treatment to Maine veterans. The announcement comes after dogged work from Congressman Jared Golden (ME-02), along with Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Angus King (I-ME) and Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (ME-01), to advocate for the creation of the program.
“Maine veterans, particularly those with the unseen wounds of war, deserve to receive care here in our state,” said Golden, Collins, King, and Pingree. “But for years, veterans who needed treatment for substance use disorder and associated mental health issues for more than one night have been sent to other states, far from their family, friends, and support system. We’ve been working with the VA to right this wrong and we are very pleased to announce that a new 24-bed residential program to treat substance use disorder is soon coming to Togus.”
Construction on the facility will begin in 2021. It will begin accepting patients in 2022.
More than one in ten American veterans is diagnosed with substance use disorder and one in five veterans is estimated to have a mental health condition. Maine has among the highest percentage of veterans of any state.
Today’s announcement marks the culmination of many months of advocacy by the Maine congressional delegation for a residential VA substance use disorder treatment facility. That advocacy included: