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I-Team: Acton Vet Finally Gets VA Doctor’s Appointment – 2 Years After He Died

By WBZ-TV Chief Correspondent Joe Shortsleeve
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ACTON (CBS) – “He was steadfast. He took care of us, all of these years.”

Suzanne Chase of Acton was talking about her husband, Doug, a Vietnam veteran who was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2011.

In 2012, she tried to move his medical care to the Veterans Affairs hospital in Bedford.

“It was so difficult for him to take the ambulance ride into Boston, we wanted to be closer.”

They waited about four months and never heard anything. Then Douglas Chase died in August 2012.

But two weeks ago, he got a letter, from the VA in Bedford, saying he could now call to make an appointment to see a primary care doctor.

“It was addressed to my husband and I opened it,” said Suzanne Chase. “I was in complete disbelief.”

Suzanne Chase was denied funeral benefits for her husband because he was never treated at a VA hospital, even though he died after waiting four months for an appointment. (WBZ-TV)

Suzanne Chase was denied funeral benefits for her husband because he was never treated at a VA hospital, even though he died after waiting four months for an appointment. (WBZ-TV)

Chase says she will never forget that walk from the mailbox.  “It was 22 months too late, I kind of thought I was in the twilight zone when I opened this letter and read it.”

At the bottom of the letter, dated June 12, it reads: “We are committed to providing primary care in a timely manner and would greatly appreciate a prompt response.”

“I was like you have to be kidding, right,” Chase recalled.

She says the VA had to know her husband was dead because she applied for funeral benefits two years ago and was denied.

The reason for the denial, (Continued)

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