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4 Texas VA centers rank poorly in wait times

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Four medical centers serving veterans in Texas have some of the nation's worst wait times for new patients.

A federal report released Monday shows that Texas' eight Veterans Affairs Department medical centers scheduled at least 92 percent of their patients for appointments within 30 days. However, facilities in Harlingen, El Paso, Dallas and Amarillo rank among the longest waits for new patients.

The Texas Valley Coastal Bend facility in Harlingen averaged a 145-day wait for new patients seeking specialist care, the nation's worst backlog. The next longest is El Paso's medical center at 90 days.

Harlingen also ranked second worst for new patients seeking primary care, at 85 days.

The centers in Amarillo, El Paso and Dallas ranked in the top 10 for new patients seeking mental health care.
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