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Officials: Biloxi VA improving access, but wait times still lagging behind national average

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BILOXI, Mississippi — Veterans Administration officials say wait times at the Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System in Biloxi still lag significantly behind the national average, but they attributed the difference to a sharp increase in veterans seeking care.

The Biloxi VA system's director Anthony Dawson announced during a Monday news conference that on average, veterans there are waiting 15 days for a primary care appointment, about 14 days for specialty care and 7.5 days for mental health care. Those numbers trail the national averages of four days for primary care, five days for specialty care and three days for mental health care.

Dawson says the wait times have risen locally because an increasing number of veterans are seeking care. He says access has improved, thanks to a net increase in 101.5 full-time positions since April 2014.

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