VHA Office of Rural Health: Meeting the Challenge of Rural Veteran Health Care

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) Almost a quarter of all Veterans in the United States live in rural communities While these regions offer many benefits, rural Veterans may also encounter barriers when seeking high-quality health care To address these challenges, in 2006 Congress created the Veterans Health Administration Office of Rural Health to help our nation’s Veterans thrive in rural communities ORH fulfills its mission by collaborating with several partners to support research, develop innovative programs and identify new care models for the more than 28 million rural Veterans enrolled in the VA health care system

These partners include VA internal organizations focused on medical, health services, and cooperative studies research programs ORH also operates three Veterans Rural Health Resource Centers that are field-based satellite offices that serve as hubs of rural health care research, innovation, and dissemination Many ORH-supported programs use technology to overcome barriers such as a lack of nearby medical facilities or providers For example, Comprehensive Telecare Hubs use telehealth technology to connect rural Veterans with primary care and mental health services, while Tele-Intensive Care Units connect VA facilities serving rural Veterans with remote VA intensive care providers Through these and other programs and partners, ORH works to connect rural Veterans with high-quality care in their communities

To learn more about the Office of Rural Health, visit our website at wwwruralhealthvagov To find out if ORH-supported programs are available in your area, contact your local VA Medical Center

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