February is American Heart Health Month. VA is raising awareness about heart health for women Veterans.
Research suggests that as much as half the population may have an unhealthy relationship with food, their body, or exercise.
New Chat Function
The Women Veterans Call Center has a new online, one-to-one chat function.
Women Veterans Health Care
Did you know that women are the fastest growing group within the Veteran population? Learn more about the changing face of women Veterans and what VA is doing to meet their health care needs.
Barriers to Care Study
The Office of Women's Health Services is pleased to release the results of the Barriers to Care Study.
In May 2010, Congress signed Public Law 111-163, Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act. Section 201 of this legislation required the VA to examine potential barriers to women Veteran’s accessing and utilizing VA health care services. The legislation specifically identified nine focus areas; Barrier 1: Comprehension of Eligibility Requirement and Scope of Services, Barrier 2: Effect of Outreach Specifically Addressing Women’s Health Services, Barrier 3: Effect of Driving Distance on Access to Care, Barrier 4: Location and Hours, Barrier 5: Childcare, Barrier 6: Acceptability of Integrated Care, Barrier 7: Gender Sensitivity, Barrier 8: Mental Health Stigma and Barrier 9: Safety and Comfort
To examine these topics the VA Office of Women’s Health Services awarded a contract to Altarum Institute, a non-profit independent health research organization. Altarum conducted a nation-wide telephone survey of more than 8,400 women Veterans who currently use and do not use VA services. Results of this study will assist VA in understanding the challenges women Veteran’s encounter when accessing care and inform the future planning of services and programming so that women Veterans receive the highest quality health care. Read more here.
Sourcebook Volume 3
Over the past two decades, VHA has rolled out numerous initiatives designed to improve access and quality of care for women Veterans. Along with clinical advances, VHA women’s health research has accelerated, providing an evidence base that further sharpens the focus on women Veterans. Sourcebook Volume 3 is a product of collaboration across VHA. Its primary purpose is to present data to inform policy and program planning as VHA implements and evaluates new ways of providing care to women Veterans. Sourcebook Volume 3—like Volumes 1 and 2—describes sociodemographic characteristics and health care utilization patterns of women Veteran patients in VHA, updated Fiscal Year 2012 data, as well as new data on costs of care and the medical condition profile of women Veterans in VHA. Read more here.
Zika is a disease caused by Zika virus that is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito. The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting for several days to a week. People usually don’t get sick enough to go to the hospital, and they very rarely die of Zika.
There have been reports of a serious birth defect of the brain called microcephaly (a condition in which a baby’s head is smaller than expected when compared to babies of the same sex and age) and other poor pregnancy outcomes in babies of mothers who were infected with Zika virus while pregnant.
VA is working closely with the CDC to monitor the Zika virus outbreak. VA follows CDC guidance on the Zika virus, and provides Zika virus testing for Veteran patients. You can learn more here.