State VA Commissioner Selected to Chair National Committee

MONTGOMERY, AlaSecretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) Robert A. McDonald has appointed W. Clyde Marsh, Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs commissioner, Chairman of the VA’s Geriatrics and Gerontology Advisory Committee (GGAC).

“I am honored to serve in this capacity and to represent all veterans at the national level,” said Marsh, a retired US Navy rear admiral. “Older veterans have special health care needs. As the chairman of this committee, I want to guide the VA’s efforts in delivering the best possible care and services to our aging veterans.”

The VA estimates that by 2020, nearly 50 percent of veterans will be 65 or older. The Veteran’s Health Administration operates 21 Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Centers (GRECC). The VA GRECCs are leaders in the area of research on the aging process and health care needs of the elderly. The GGAC provides advice to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs and the Under Secretary for Health on matters for improving and expanding the VA’s capability to meet the medical, psychological and social needs of older veterans. It also advises the VA on advances in geriatric and gerontology research, the training of health care personnel, and the development of improved models of clinical services for older veterans. The GGAC also reports to congress as a congressionally mandated committee.