VA pilots iPads for caregivers of homebound veterans


The Veterans Affairs Department is about to start a pilot with caregivers of homebound veterans that provides them iPads pre-loaded with healthcare apps.

Approximately 4,000 families receive VA benefits to provide care for their severely wounded vets, said Neil Evans, a physician with the Washington, D.C., VA Medical Center. Slightly more than a quarter agreed to participate in the pilot, he said while speaking Jan. 23 during the 2013 Federal Mobile Computing Summit in the District of Columbia.

The iPads will have apps that allow caregivers to communicate securely with primary caregivers, Evans said, and will give them access to personal health data. PTSD Coach, the VA-developed app that provides post-traumatic stress disorder screening and symptoms tracking, will connect on the backend to primary caregivers when loaded on the pilot iPads, Evans said. Should a vet show "high symptoms of PTSD, their provider can be notified of that fact," he said.

For more:
- learn more about the PTSD Coach app at the VA website

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