The North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System serves veterans across a large geographical area in North Florida (33 counties) and South Georgia (19 counties). In addition to our two medical centers in Gainesville and Lake City, we offer a number of services to our patients in several satellite outpatient clinics and community-based outpatient clinics. The North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health Care System is the VA's largest Health Care System spanning 50 counties (40,000 square miles) between North Florida and South Georgia while proudly serving over 130,000 veterans.The Malcom Randall VA Medical Center in Gainesville is a tertiary care facility that also serves as an active teaching hospital with an extensive array of specialty services. The Malcom Randall VA Medical Center combines a full range of patient care services with state-of-the-art technology and supported through education and research. We provide between 40,000 and 50,000 outpatient visits each month. Patients from our System of Clinics must travel to Gainesville for most specialty services, and this facility provides some specialty services to 100,000 veterans on a yearly basis. The estimated total number of outpatient visits for fiscal year 2008 approximate 600,000. Combined with a total of 12,000 in-patient admissions each year, the Malcom Randall VA Medical Center is easily one of the top five busiest VA medical centers in the country.
Specialized services include but are not limited to: Traumatic Brain Injury Treatment, Spinal Cord Injury Treatment, Stroke Rehabilitation, Radiation/Oncology, Hospice and Palliative Care, Surgery (Including Surgical Inpatient Care, Cardiothoracic, Neurological, Musculoskeletal, and other)
Gainesville VA Medical Center History
President Harry S. Truman initially approved the establishment of the Veterans Administration Hospital in Gainesville in October 1945. However, authorization for the construction of the hospital was canceled in December, and it was not until October 10, 1961 that President John F. Kennedy approved the construction of a 500-bed hospital in Gainesville, Florida. In 1962, the Administrator of the Veterans Administration approved the master plan for a new VA Hospital in Gainesville. The plan provided for a 480-bed general hospital to be located adjacent to the University of Florida. VA purchased 31 acres of land. Construction began on January 16, 1964.
Gainesville VA Medical Center was dedicated on October 22, 1967. U.S. Representative, Olin E. "Tiger" Teague, D-Texas, the keynote speaker, said, "the veterans of the sunshine state can be assured they are never forgotten men."The five story, 480-bed hospital began admitting patients in October 1967. Marine Corporal Lawrence W. Hale of Tallahassee was the first patient admitted to the new hospital. Hale, a combat veteran of the 3rd Marine Division in Vietnam was transferred here from the Jacksonville Naval Hospital on September 25, 1967.