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Summit Brings Renewed VA Drive for Women Veterans

Peake: Reinventing to be 'Women-Centric'

WASHINGTON, July 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An aggressive push to ensure women veterans receive the highest quality of care in VA medical facilities was pledged by Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James B. Peake at a recent VA National Summit on Women Veterans' Issues.

Although VA already has services for women patients equal to those men receive, Peake told the audience of more than 400 women-veteran advocates, "We are reinventing ourselves by expanding our women-centric focus to initiate new programs that meet the needs of women veterans."

Citing the demographic shift that brings increasing numbers of women to VA for care and the need for changes, Peake announced formation of a work group to focus on women's needs in prosthetics and rehabilitation, hiring women's advocates in VA medical centers, developing quality measurements specifically for women patients, purchasing more state-of-the-art, specialized women's health care equipment, and expanding medical education in women's health for VA care providers.

Summit attendees also learned that VA recently established a work group whose goal is to ensure every female veteran enrolled in VA care has a women's health primary care provider, especially to meet gender-specific needs.

The June 20-22 conference in Washington focused on how to ensure VA meets women-specific health needs and how to inform more women veterans of their VA benefits. It was the fourth women's summit, which VA holds every four years.

Summit co-sponsors included the American Legion Auxiliary, AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans and Veterans of Foreign Wars. Other assisting veterans groups included the Blinded Veterans Association, Military Officers Association of America, Paralyzed Veterans of America, the American Legion, Vietnam Veterans of America and TriWest.

SOURCE U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
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