November 11, 2020
Pennsylvania is home to 840,000 veterans, the fourth-largest veteran population in the nation. HAP thanks these men and women for their service and sacrifices to protect our freedom and way of life. The association and its members also recognize that, as a result of these sacrifices, our veterans and their families sometimes need additional life supports, including help for health care challenges.
Improving veterans’ health care and wellness is a priority for hospitals and health systems. The American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Institute for Diversity is committed to ending health care disparities, and military and veteran communities are identified as one of our vulnerable populations.
The AHA teamed up with Warrior Centric Health, which offers comprehensive Cultural Competency Awareness and Clinical Training in Veteran Population Health. The program focuses on the biological-psychological-social-cultural considerations of the veteran community and provider communication and interactions with the veterans.
By example, Lehigh Valley Health Network’s (LVHN) addresses the complex health care needs of veterans. LVHN is a Veterans Choice Program provider, allowing veterans who can't get immediate help through the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Wilkes-Barre to go to LVHN. Through an agreement with the Veterans Affairs Department, LVHN partnered with the Wilkes-Barre facility to offer a variety of health services.
All Lehigh Valley hospitals started screening patients to capture veteran status in electronic medical records. This enables clinicians to ask about military service, deployments, and experiences as a way to better develop care to meet veterans' needs.
If you are interested in learning more about how Pennsylvania hospitals and health systems are working to meet the health care needs of veterans, contact your local hospital.
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