Outrageous VA Clinic Turns Away Veteran With PTSD Service Dog
A veteran says he was turned away from a VA clinic because he brought his service dog with him.
John Sutton, a decorated Army veteran who served in the Vietnam War, suffers from PTSD. He has been hospitalized three times in the past for attempting suicide.
His service dog, Jack, accompanies him everywhere he goes, including to his bi-weekly therapy sessions at the VA clinic in Conroe, Texas.
But that all changed for Sutton during his last visit to the clinic.
He said that a guard stopped him in the hallway and told him Jack can't be inside the clinic.
KRIV reported that Sutton was given an e-mail that states the use of dogs for a mental health diagnosis, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, are not allowed in VA hospitals or clinics.
Sutton said that both Conroe Regional Hospital and Saint Lukes Hospital welcomed Jack with open arms in the past.
“Allowed Jack not only in the hospital Jack came up and comforted me in the bed,” Sutton told KRIV.
The Conroe VA clinic is now working to get Jack an access pass to Sutton's therapy sessions.
“The Houston VA Medical Center welcomes trained service dogs and certainly recognizes their value to our veterans," a statement released by the VA reads. "In accordance with the VA national policy the medical center works to ensure that dogs entering our main hospital or our clinics are trained to be in waiting rooms with veterans and other trained service dogs. PTSD emotional support dogs are often not trained specifically for this.”
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