The Washington Post

How has military medical consolidation affected employees?

Walter Reed Army Medical Center closed down operations during summer 2011, moving its outpatients to new facilities at Bethesda and Fort Belvoir. Originally, the plan was conceived by the Defense Department as a way to reduce traffic congestion in the area, though the move increased Bethesda’s workforce by 44 percent.

Research done by Walter Reed found a slight decrease in vehicle traffic during peak morning and evening rush hours after the consolidation. However, conflicting research done by outside traffic analysts found that the decrease could be a result of vehicles overclogging the roads, allowing fewer drivers to reach points measured in the research.

Concern has also grown over the demand for parking at the Bethesda Naval Hospital, as an investigation has begun on the usage of fake parking permits by some employees.

How has this medical consolidation worked for employees? Has your commute been affected? Has service member medical care improved?

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