VA partners with Philips to expand delivery of telehealth services

Jackie Drees -

Department of Veterans Affairs is launching a multisite pilot program that will use Philips technology to provide remote and virtual care to veterans at their local veterans service organizations.

The program, called Accessing Telehealth through Local Area Stations, is the result of a partnership between VA, Philips, Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion.

The initiative aims to allow veterans to conduct virtual appointments with their VA providers at their local VFW or Legion posts, eliminating the need to travel to a distant VA medical facility or outpatient clinic. ATLAS will leverage Philips telehealth patient monitoring technology, including WiFi-enabled electronic scales, blood pressure cuffs and thermometers.

"[Telehealth technology] removes geographic and digital barriers and is the latest way today's VFW Posts are innovating to address the needs of our veterans and their families," said William Schmitz, VFW national commander, according to the news release.

VA launched its first ATLAS at a VFW post in Eureka, Mont. The agency plans to roll out the program at additional VFW sites in Linesville, Pa., Los Banos, Calif., and an American Legion site in Springfield, Va.

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