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Serving those who served

June 3, 2022 | Everyday Moments

Serving those who served

Caregiver goes the extra mile to help veterans access medical services.

Getting what you need on an island doesn’t always come easy.

That’s especially true for veterans of the armed services when they need a kind of care that’s not readily available.

But that’s where Eva Nash excels.

Eva is a referral coordinator at PeaceHealth Peace Island Medical Center in Friday Harbor located on San Juan Island, a rural and remote location in Washington.

She spends her days helping patients—and especially veterans—connect to referral services that often require them to travel off the island to be seen.

When veterans need to go “off island” for care, the process for approval can often be very intensive and quite challenging.

This is where Eva steps up, going the extra mile to make sure veterans living on the island get their medical care coordinated, authorized and scheduled. It’s often an arduous process due to the constant changes in the VA referral system.

Eva has been successful in assisting veterans thanks to the relationships she’s developed as a referral coordinator.

She doesn’t do it alone. In fact, she regularly coordinates with a local attorney who is also a VA advocate and VA post auxiliary member.

During a personal vacation, she made a point of meeting the attorney in his Mt. Vernon office to discuss a particularly complicated situation.

Eva was able to get a complete referral for a Vietnam veteran who needed an imaging study as well as referrals for two other veterans. The Vietnam vet was so thankful he stopped by Eva’s workplace with a huge bag of cookies baked by the island’s San Juan Bakery. He also wrote several letters of appreciation to the PeaceHealth Peace Island administration to let them know how important Eva’s work is to veterans like him.

The elderly World War II veterans and those who suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder are grateful for Eva's expertise and coordination in getting them the care they need.

While Eva was thanked with a special cookie delivery, her real reward is in the difference she makes in serving the health care needs and improving the lives of San Juan County veterans.