WILMINGTON -- Many Marines and soldiers end up here in the Cape Fear region after fulfilling their duties in the armed forces. This boom in the veteran population has put a strain on the area's lone V.A. clinic. The clinic is located in Wilmington. Local Navy veteran Mike Ewert says you can only get a regular check up at the clinic. For any other services veterans have to drive hours to get to a V.A. medical center. To make it easier on our veterans new clinics are going up in Brunswick and Robeson Counties. Wilmington's V.A. clinic will also go through an expansion. Rep. Mike McIntyre said, "One of the reasons we are expanding in Wilmington is not only because of the population growth of veterans in the area but also a desire to offer more services, including mental health services, which has been an area where there has been a concern a well -- as a lot of the rehab services and additional diagnostic screenings." McIntyre says the new V.A. clinics will be centrally located within each county. Brunswick County's will be in Supply. The one in Robeson County will be built in Lumberton. McIntyre hopes the V.A. clinics will be open by 2012.
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