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Veterans Heavily Using Telemedicine During Pandemic


The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs recently announced that video telehealth appointments to Veterans’ homes increased over 1000 percent as Veterans increasingly chose virtual care through VA Video Connect during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In this region, Veterans through the Oscar G. Johnson VA Medical Center in Iron Mountain showed a similar increase according to spokesperson John Jamison. He says they've had virtual care for awhile, but the pandemic has accelerated use here...

"Locally, we actually gone up 421 percent..."

Jamison says between February and May they went from 114 encounters, or telehealth use, in February to 594 encounters in May. VA Video Connect has been around about three years and Jamison says the service is very valuable in this rural region..

"For our rural veterans in northern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula we've been really able to reach out and give quality care to people that we can't see face-to-face..."

At the national level, Jamison says the VA is working with strategic partners to increase access to technology that Veterans need to connect with their VA health care team virtually. He says they also can call their primary care provider at the VA and ask to set up an appointment for VA Video Connect.

Jamison says more information is at connectedcare.va.gov

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