VA

By Jonah Comstock June 22, 2016
The US Department of Veterans Affairs has been accused of misusing $51.9 million in government appropriations to fund the development and rollout of its suite of mobile health apps, MeriTalk reported, citing an unreleased preliminary inspector general report. According to MeriTalk, when the VA launched its family caregiver app initiative in 2012, the department had insufficient IT funds, partly...
By Jonah Comstock May 17, 2016
The Department of Veterans Affairs has had a rough couple of years. The year 2014 saw the VA come under fire for an inefficient system that left tens of thousands of patients facing long waits for care with some even dying as a result. The silver lining of this crisis, Under Secretary for Health and VA Chief Executive Dr. David Shulkin said at the American Telemedicine Association annual...
By Aditi Pai November 10, 2015
The US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) employs a few key principles to engage its population with mobile health tools, according to Dr. Neil Evans, co-director of the VA connected health department who spokes at the HIMSS Connected Health Conference this week. One of the principles the VA focuses on, though Evans admits it is a very basic one, is knowing its customer. "Our customer is the...
By Jonah Comstock May 12, 2015
The VA Boston Healthcare System will launch a pilot using the Basis Peak wearable. The wristworn device will be used to evaluate the effect of a drug on veterans' sleep habits. San Francisco-based Basis, which was acquired by Intel last year, is donating 1,000 Basis devices to the Boston VA, some of which will be used for the sleep study, and others of which will be used for the VA's Move! weight...
By Jonah Comstock May 7, 2015
The Senate Special Committee on Aging held a hearing yesterday to learn about the potential of aging in place technologies, including sensors and wearables. Aging In Place Technology Watch lead Laurie Orlov and VA Deputy Chief Patient Care Services Officer Maureen McCarthy testified, along with academics Marjorie Skubic from the University of Missouri and Carol Kim from the University of Maine....
By Jonah Comstock March 30, 2015
According to a posting on ClinicalTrials.gov, the US Department of Veterans Affairs is embarking on a new clinical trial of its PTSD Coach app, to test whether the app is more effective with clinician support. After a first phase of interviews with primary care and mental health practitioners, investigators will move onto a small 16-week study of 30 veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (...
By Jonah Comstock March 10, 2015
The Department of Veterans Affairs continues to develop, innovate, and scale its mobile health initiatives according to a new report published in the Washington Post. The bulk of the Post's report focuses on Give an Hour, a nonprofit that connects veterans with free mental health sessions offered by volunteer professionals. The app uses telehealth to facilitate these sessions: it previously...
By Jonah Comstock December 3, 2014
A California hospital has begun requiring certain patients use a wearable remote patient monitoring device in order to comply with internal patient safety protocols. Chino Valley Medical Center is employing the Leaf Patient Monitoring System from Pleasanton-based Leaf Healthcare. The sensor monitors patient movement in bed, then uses that data to calculate when the patient needs to be turned to...
By Jonah Comstock October 23, 2014
Telemedicine has been around for a number of years, but it's not yet an everyday channel for patients to receive care. A panel of providers and vendors sat down at the Partners HealthCare Connected Health Symposium to discuss the question of what it would take to get telemedicine into the mainstream. The panel, moderated by Harvard heart surgeon Lawrence Cohn, included American Well CEO Dr. Roy...
By Jonah Comstock October 13, 2014
The US Department of Veterans Affairs announced that 690,000 US veterans received care in the 2014 fiscal year via telehealth, with 2 million telehealth visits scheduled. That means that 12 percent of all veterans enrolled in VA programs received telehealth care of some kind in 2014. “We have to adapt to meet veterans wherever their needs are,” VA Secretary Robert A. McDonald said in a statement...