VA Puget Sound Health Care System

VA Puget Sound Health Care System is a VA medical center in Seattle, Washington. The facility is equipped to treat U.S. military veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma and other asbestos cancers, such as lung cancer. It serves as a referral center for all veterans and is a leader in oncology, radiation, and clinical trials. At VA Puget Sound, eligible veterans can receive top-notch cancer care services at low or no cost.

About VA Puget Sound Health Care System

VA Puget Sound Health Care System — also known as VA Puget Sound — is the Pacific Northwest’s largest tertiary referral center providing general medical and surgical services to U.S. military veterans.

It is also a leading teaching facility having affiliations with the University of Washington’s School of Medicine and Department of Radiation Oncology.

VA Puget Sound receives funding from the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Defense Department. Additional financial support for this non-profit health care system comes from private sources.

Each year, VA Puget Sound Health Care System provides health services that include about 1 million outpatient visits, 4,700 inpatient admissions, and 4,100 surgeries.

Many are referrals from other VA health care systems, which emphasizes Puget Sound’s reputation for exceptional patient care.

VA Puget Sound is a national leader in general cancer treatment due to its partnership with the University of Washington’s oncology department. Cancer patients receive personalized health care plans, including diagnostic, surgical, radiation, and clinical study treatment.

Treating lung cancer is a focus for the world-class oncologists at VA Puget Sound, which includes providing treatment to veterans with mesothelioma.

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VA Puget Sound Location & Overview

Puget Sound is the Pacific Ocean inlet connecting the cities of Seattle and Tacoma by water. The entire population of Greater Seattle exceeds 4 million people. A good proportion is veterans who served at major naval bases like Bremerton, army bases like Fort Lewis, and air force bases like Whidbey Island.

The U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Coast Guard also had prominence in the Pacific Northwest. As such, many veterans who retired remained in this temperate climate.

VA Puget Sound Health Care System operates two main medical facilities in Seattle and Tacoma. The Seattle facility handles most of the surgical procedures, while the American Lake division at Tacoma is a leading research and training facility.

There are two main locations of the VA Puget Sound Health Care System:

  • VA Puget Sound – Seattle VA Medical Center: 1660 South Columbian Way, Seattle, WA
  • VA Puget Sound – American Lake VA Medical Center: 9600 Veterans Way, Tacoma, WA

In total, VA Puget Sound has 10 locations in Western Washington, providing inpatient and outpatient treatment and follow-up intervention to veterans, including a mobile unit making regular trips to remote areas. This allows veterans with mobility challenges to access the best VA medical attention possible.

Mesothelioma in U.S. Military Veterans

Data shows that over 30% of all mesothelioma patients in the United States are U.S. military veterans. Further, U.S. Navy veterans make up most cases of mesothelioma.

Did You Know?

1 out of 3 mesothelioma patients is a U.S. military veteran.

The only known cause of mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos, which was widely used throughout all branches of the military for decades. Before the dangers of asbestos exposure were known, it was relied upon heavily for its heat resistance, fireproofing, and insulating properties.

Most people will be exposed to asbestos throughout their lifetimes. However, studies show that the risk of developing asbestos cancer increases significantly with repeated exposure, especially over a long period. Sadly, this is the case for many military veterans, which puts them at increased risk.

Veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma may not even know it is due to their military service. This is because the disease isn’t usually detected until 10-50 years after asbestos exposure.

Fortunately, the VA is well aware of the tragic situation and is prepared to offer specialized care at one of the country’s top mesothelioma treatment centers, such as VA Puget Sound Seattle.

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The Patient Experience at VA Puget Sound

VA Puget Sound Health Care System has a solid reputation for providing extraordinary care to military veterans. The medical center is an innovative leader in excellence, public service, and efficiency.

As the primary referral site in the VA’s northwest area, the system strives to provide a first-class patient experience in its main facilities and outreach clinics.

“Our mission is to provide world class care to improve the health and well-being of our nation’s veterans, driven by a culture of learning, innovation, collaboration and respect.”
– VA Puget Sound Health Care System

VA Puget Sound’s benchmark for excellence is measured by exemplary patient-centered and evidence-based results. That vision is grounded in core values of integrity, commitment, advocacy, and respect.

Whole health is central to VA Puget Sound Health Care System. The whole health treatment approach focuses on overall well-being. This includes complementary and integrative self-care, where the patient is an equal partner in developing a personal intervention, treatment, and monitoring program.

Health care services at VA Puget Sound include:

  • Acupuncture to help manage pain
  • Massage and manual therapy
  • Meditation and mindfulness training
  • Mental health care
  • Primary care
  • Social programs and services
  • Specialty care
  • Yoga, tai chi, and qi gong classes

Contact our Patient Advocates if you are interested in seeking treatment at the Pugent Sound VA Hospital or would like information about other mesothelioma cancer treatment centers across the country.

Cancer Program at VA Puget Sound

VA Puget Sound’s cancer program is among the most advanced in the entire VA health care system. This is due in part to the outstanding collaboration with the University of Washington’s School of Medicine and the advanced radiation oncology department.

In 2022, VA Puget Sound was again granted a 3-year national accreditation from the Commission on Cancer, a quality program of the American College of Surgeons.

VA Puget Sound serves as both an operation and training facility. Physicians, residents, interns, and other specialty medical staff rotate through the school and facilities.

Additionally, VA Puget Sound’s research and development component allows veterans access to ongoing clinical trials, which could include up to sixty studies at any given time.

This is especially important for patients who wish to pursue the most aggressive and innovative mesothelioma treatment options available.

Lung cancer is the largest caseload at the Puget Sound cancer program. The center diagnoses, treats, and provides ongoing care for an average of 50 to 60 lung-involved cancer cases yearly. Because of this, the facility may be an excellent option for patients with pleural mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma Doctors at VA Puget Sound

The VA Puget Sound Health Care System is proud to have some of the finest cancer physicians, surgeons, and research professionals anywhere in the world.

The University of Washington’s School of Medicine is recognized for providing the best cancer care anywhere. This includes treatment for malignant mesothelioma cases.

The mesothelioma treatment team at VA Puget Sound includes Dr. Tony Quang, a board-certified radiation oncologist. He is also an associate professor who holds a law degree. He has practiced cancer care for over 15 years, his specialties including lung and thoracic cancers.

Dr. Quong is also the Interim Service Chief for Radiation Oncology at the VA.

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Mesothelioma Treatment at VA Puget Sound

VA Puget Sound Health Care System is a leader in oncology radiation techniques and remote-controlled surgery involving fiber optic imagery. State-of-the-art solid tumor treatment intervention comes with a multidisciplinary team environment. Patients are treated with the best available medical techniques and technology.

The system’s primary goal is to streamline treatment options for the fastest interventions to return the patient home as quickly as possible.

Cancer treatment options at VA Puget Sound Health Care System range from more traditional therapies such as radiation, chemotherapy, medication, and surgery to advanced forms of limited-invasive robotic interventions.

Mesothelioma Hope understands that creating a personalized mesothelioma treatment plan is a major decision for patients and their loved ones. If you would like help finding a mesothelioma specialist who is a good fit for your treatment goals, connect with our highly trained Patient Advocates.

Mesothelioma Hope has no affiliation with and is not endorsed or sponsored by VA Puget Sound Health Care System. Any contact information listed is for informational purposes only. You have the right to contact VA Puget Sound Health Care System directly.

Written by:

Lead Editor

Laura Wright is a journalist and content strategist with more than 14 years of professional experience. She attended college at the University of Florida, graduating magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 2008. Her writing has been featured in The Gainesville Sun and other regional publications throughout Florida.

4 References
  1. Tony Quang, MD, JD. Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Washington. (n.d.). Retrieved December 1, 2022, from https://radiationoncology.uw.edu/faculty/tony-quang/

  2. VA Puget Sound Health Care. Veterans Affairs. (2022, December 2). Retrieved December 1, 2022, from https://www.va.gov/puget-sound-health-care/

  3. US Department of Veterans Affairs. (2022, July 18). VA puget sound again earns national accreditation from the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons: VA Puget Sound Health Care. VA Puget Sound again earns national accreditation from the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. Retrieved December 1, 2022, from https://www.va.gov/puget-sound-health-care/news-releases/va-puget-sound-again-earns-national-accreditation-from-the-commission-on-cancer-of-the-american-college-of/

  4. U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2021). VA Puget Sound Health Care System Annual Report. Retrieved December 2, 2022, from https://www.va.gov/files/2022-02/Puget_Sound_FY21_Annual_Report.pdf

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