Current Operating Status - VA Central California Health Care System
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VA Central California Health Care System


Current Operating Status

Situation Update

As of Thursday, July 16, 2020 2:48 PM PDT

VA has implemented an aggressive public health response to protect and care for Veterans, their families, health care providers, and staff in the face of this emerging health risk. We are working directly with the Fresno County Department of Public Health, the CDC and other federal partners to monitor the outbreak of the virus.

Due to the continued threat of community-spread of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in the Central Valley, VA Central California HCS (VACCHCS) is now operating under strict Locked-Door protocols. All exterior buildings have been closed for public safety, with services temporarily relocated to the main hospital (Building-1). Our primary mission remains to protect and provide Veterans with safe and effective care in a clean and safe environment. With many Veteran patients already battling underlying health conditions, it is essential that the organization follow these strict operating protocols in fulfilling its mission.

Lessons learned from healthcare systems across the nation demonstrate that the best course of action is, ultimately, to prevent any possibility of COVID-19 infection entering healthcare facilities.

For public safety reasons and to further safeguard our Veteran patient population, we are limiting access to all VACCHCS healthcare facilities.

Effective immediately:

  • Only Veterans will be permitted to enter VACCHCS healthcare facilities
  • Veterans with existing emergent medical appointments that may only be performed face-to-face will be given access to VACCHCS healthcare facilities
  • Care for Veterans without COVID-19 will be maintained through telehealth services, VA Video Connect, Telephone Care or a preferred delivery system, if possible
  • Veterans with non-emergent care appointments may be converted to telephone care or VA Video Connect appointment, or be rescheduled for a later date
  • Appointments may be maintained for Veterans with timely emergent appointments which can only be performed face-to-face, provided that the Veteran does not currently present any COVID-19 symptoms
  • Referrals to non-VA health care providers in the community for non-emergent/urgent needs are suspended until further notice
  • All Visitors, including caretakers and companions will be restricted and encouraged to use non-face-to-face methods of communication. Those accompanying or providing transportation will be asked to wait patiently in their vehicles
  • Children under the age of 18 will not currently be allowed entry to VACCHCS facilities

Additional changes that may impact how Veterans access healthcare services at VACCHCS facilities include; cancellation of face-to-face appointments, including group classes, such as Tai Chi, Drum Class, Smoking Cessation, etcetera, until further notice.

For public safety reasons Veterans are advised to contact the VACCHCS Call Center at 1-888-826-2838, send a message through My HealtheVet, or call their Primary Care Provider before visiting VACCHCS facilities. This includes previously scheduled appointments. This enables Veterans to continue to receive care through minimal physical contact, saves time and reduces the need for personal protective equipment, keeping those resources available for critical use.

Essential services will continue to be available. Please refer to the Contact Us section at:, should you have questions or concerns regarding your care,

Veterans, their families and staff members are urged to take everyday precautions to protect against respiratory illness caused by COVID-19. Those exhibiting symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath should call their VA medical center before going to a clinic to limit risk of exposure.

Again, these efforts in place for the protection of all Veterans, staff and our collective communities. We realize these are significant changes and we thank you for your cooperation, patience, and understanding.

To get answers to questions you have about coronavirus and how VA is responding, visit our Coronavirus FAQs page or read VA's public health response.

If you have symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath, call your VA medical center before going to a clinic, urgent care center, or emergency room. Calling first helps us protect you, medical staff, and other patients.

For the latest information about coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).



Facility Status

Parent Facility
VA Central California Health Care System Limited Services
Limited services. Face coverings are required when entering campus.
Medical Centers
Fresno Medical Center Limited Services
Limited services. Face coverings are required when entering campus.
Community Based Outpatient Clinics
Merced Clinic Limited Services
Limited services. Face coverings are required when entering clinic.
Tulare Clinic Limited Services
Limited services. Face coverings are required when entering clinic.
Oakhurst Clinic Limited Services
Limited services. Face coverings are required when entering clinic.

Telephone Numbers

  • Emergency: 911
  • Veterans Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255 (Press 1)
  • 24 Hour Nurse: 1-888-826-2838 x6933
  • Change Your Appointment: 559-228-6913 or
  • Media Inquiries: 559-228-5308
  • National Veterans Helpline: 1-800-507-4571
  • Patient Locator: 559-225-6100 or
  • Pharmacy Refill: 1-888-826-2838 x5333
  • Staff Locator: Not Available
  • Telephone Care: 559-228-6933 or

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