MADISON — Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs (WDVA) Secretary Mary M. Kolar today stopped all medically unnecessary visits to members who reside at the state’s 24-hour skilled nursing facilities for veterans. Below is the full statement of Secretary Kolar:

“Today, in the interest of the health and welfare of our members and staff, I have made the difficult decision to no longer allow visitors at our Wisconsin Veterans Homes located in Chippewa Falls, King, and Union Grove, in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“At this time, we do not have any diagnosed cases of COVID-19 at our Wisconsin Veterans Homes. However, following the recommendations of infection control experts, we are stopping all medically unnecessary visits to the veterans who have entrusted us with their care and safety. We are also restricting members from medically unnecessary appointments. Our Homes may make some visitor allowances for end-of-life cases and families should continue to communicate with a member’s primary nurse in these situations. In these instances, family members will be screened before entering our facilities.

“I understand that connecting with family is very important to our members. We are asking family and friends to please consider other ways to communicate with members such as phone, email, text, video chat (e.g., Facetime, Skype), or via social media.

“We continue to closely monitor the status of COVID-19 in Wisconsin, will continue to adjust our practices accordingly, and will reopen our campus to visitors as soon as practicable. Thank you for your understanding and for joining us to help prevent the spread of disease in our community.”

The Wisconsin Veterans Homes provide 24-hour skilled nursing care to veterans, their spouses, and gold star parents.

  • Chippewa Falls is home to 72 individuals.
  • King, near Waupaca, is home to nearly 500 individuals.
  • Union Grove is home to more than 150 individuals.
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