- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 3, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - The New Mexico Department of Veterans’ Services is among a handful of entities nationwide selected to participate in a pilot program aimed at better serving rural veterans.

The department will receive a $2 million federal grant to increase access to health care and benefits for veterans and their families who live in rural and underserved areas around New Mexico.

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall announced the grant Tuesday. He says too many veterans in rural New Mexico face long travel times and a lack of health care options.

In August, the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs held a field hearing in Roswell to address care for rural veterans. At the time, organizers said veterans were clear in their testimony that they aren’t being provided with the services they need.

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