Solutions for Health Care Professionals

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Solutions for Health Care Professionals
Solutions for Health Care Professionals

If you are a member of a VA care team, VA Connected Care is providing digital health technology tools that will help you provide enhanced care to your patients and more conveniently communicate with Veterans as well as other members of the care team.

Current Connected Care technologies available for health care professionals include:

Learn more about how these technologies can help you by clicking on the tabs above.

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VA Telehealth Services
VA Telehealth Services

VA Telehealth Services provides clinical care in circumstances where distance separates those receiving care from those providing services. The value VA derives from telehealth is not in implementing telehealth technologies alone, but how VA uses health informatics, disease management, care/case management and telehealth technologies to facilitate access to care and improve the health of Veterans with the intent to provide the right care in the right place at the right time.

View the video above to learn about how VA care teams have used telehealth to improve patient care – and patient quality of life – by helping Veterans receive the care they need when they need it, without having to travel long distances or switch providers.

Dr. Jesús R. Casal is a pulmonologist who works at the VA Medical Center in San Juan, Puerto Rico and sees patients from all over the island. He speaks about how telehealth improves delivery of care for his patient Thomas Baumgartner, as well as improving efficiency and workflow for providers. He says, “I can do almost as much as I can do in person…I think telemedicine has been very good for the whole system, not only for the hospital, for the provider… but more importantly for the patient.”

At the VAMC in Cleveland, OH, Clinical Psychologist Christine Frick treats patients with spinal cord injuries, including Veteran Bruce Poole who was seen by Dr. Frick in Cleveland before returning to his home in Buffalo, NY. Dr. Frick says, “telemental health is a wonderful avenue to continue to facilitate growth with someone who I’ve already established a relationship with…it’s like having them in the room with me.” Mr. Poole agrees, saying he might not have continued with counseling at all if he had not had the opportunity to continue with Dr. Frick through telehealth.

Veteran Bill Jacobs lives in rural Colorado, more than 150 miles from the nearest VA hospital. While travel time and mountain road conditions once made it hard for him to get to appointments, he is now able to get better and more consistent treatment by teleconferencing with specialists at the VAMC in Grand Junction, CO. One of his doctors, Dr. Bart Taylor, says, “I was surprised that you could provide…this level of care, and I think the Veterans are actually more satisfied with their care through telehealth.”

Telehealth services offered by VA vary depending on location. For information about services available in a specific area, contact the local VAMC.

Learn more about the resources offered by VA Telehealth Services.

Telehealth
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Secure Messaging
Secure Messaging

Secure Messaging allows Veterans and VA care teams to send and receive messages wherever they have an Internet connection, making it easier to communicate in between appointments and for Veterans to get answers to health related questions.

Secure Messaging is available 24/7 through My HealtheVet, and will be available as a mobile app in the future.

How Secure Messaging Helps You

Dr. David Douglas, Chief Health Information Officer from the Portland, Oregon VA Medical Center, played an instrumental role in bringing Secure Messaging to the VA community.  “We need to reach out to patients so that they have access to information, decision support, and the ability to communicate with us using technology,” says Dr. Douglas.

“In the old days, your interaction with the patient was limited to the time of the scheduled appointment, maybe to a phone call. Now that we have Secure Messaging, I can communicate with my patients 24/7; any time of the day or week that they contact me or I need to contact them, we have the ability to communicate.”

Secure Messaging is valuable for Veterans from all demographics, including older Veterans who may have limited experience with technology as well as the younger generation who grew up with the Internet. Dr. Douglas’ goal is to get all Veterans using the program.

Iraq Veteran David Naszbaum, a patient of Dr. Douglas, observes that the use of Secure Messaging helps him stay in touch with his doctor on an ongoing basis, helping them both make better use of time in face-to-face appointments. “When I do see my doctor and…we’ve already exchanged messages on Secure Messaging, we can put that issue aside and talk about the current issue I’ve showed up at his office for.”

Learn more about Secure Messaging.

Secure Messaging
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VA App Store
VA App Store

The VA App Store offers a number of mobile apps to help health care professionals access information quickly, communicate with patients more easily, and save time by managing information on-the-go. These apps extend care beyond the traditional office visit, empowering Veterans to be active participants in their own care. Learn more and download the apps by visiting the VA App Store.

Learn more about how VA mobile apps are helping health care professionals:

Providers On-the-Go

Providers On-the-Go

Learn more about how VA mobile apps are helping health care professionals. Providers use their devices in a variety of ways to improve health care delivery:

Dr. Sarah Niles

“If I’m bedside with a patient who is not stable and I don’t want to leave them, I can now use my device to place orders directly to the laboratory, radiology, or pharmacy,” said Dr. Sarah Niles at the Tomah VA Medical Center.

Dr. Shaman Singh

For Dr. Shaman Singh, the real value of his mobile device is that he has instant access his patients' information. "I use my iPad to support my work about 95% of the day,” said Dr. Singh, a hospitalist at the Washington DC VA Medical Center. “I use it to reference patients’ charts, place orders and pull up medical diagrams to provide patient education.”

Dr. Atwood

“Mobile computing is the wave of the future – the ability to have patient information readily available wherever you are," said Dr. Atwood of Pittsburgh Healthcare System. “We believe this technology will bring us in closer cooperation with our patients.”

Summary

As apps are released, there will be more opportunities to use mobile technology to improve Veteran care. VA will be releasing a series of apps that will allow for mobile-optimized access to real-time Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture/Computerized Patient Record System (VistA/CPRS) information to inform clinical decisions. These apps will enable providers to write progress notes, enter a subset of orders and complete other clinical tasks, as well as support specific common workflows.

VA App Store
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