We have all been dealing with this coronavirus pandemic now for about two years, and it has changed our way of living quite a bit. Many of us have lost family and friends to the virus, and many have even had a case of the affliction. Needless to say, it will be remembered for many years to come. The quarantines, the precautions and various treatments with lots of information and misinformation and confusion by the experts and public in general. Many of the high-risk population, including veterans, are self-quarantining themselves as an extra precaution. The VA outlined five ways to access health virtually from your home in a recent blog post:
- Mental health care through telehealth. If you are feeling stressed, anxious or depressed, or the pandemic is making your mental health symptoms worse, speaking with a mental health provider can help. You can meet with a mental health provider through VA Video Connect, VA’s secure video conferencing app. You can set up a video appointment from home, and there is no copay. For more information, contact your local VA medical center. If you need immediate mental health support, contact the Veterans Crisis Line by calling 1-800-273-8255 and pressing 1, or text 838255. It’s free and confidential.
- Switch from in-person appointments to video visits. Using VA Video Connect, you can meet with your VA care team over a secure video connection. You can use it to avoid COVID-19 or just for your own convenience. You have a choice.
- Use the Annie App if you have vaccine side effects or you test positive. The Annie App for Veterans sends automated text messages that can help you learn about COVID-19, cope with stress related to the pandemic and support you if you are exposed or test positive. To learn more, visit the Annie App page on the VA App Store.
- Find your VA COVID-19 test results and vaccine records on My HealtheVet. If you received a COVID-19 test or the COVID-19 vaccine at VA, you can use your my HealtheVet Premium account to find your test results or vaccination record online. If you don’t have a My HealtheVet Premium account, they are free. You can get one in person at a local VA facility or online. Contact your local VA health center.
- Have your VA care team monitor your chronic condition or COVID-19 recovery. VA’s Remote Patient Monitoring — Home Telehealth program lends a hand to help veterans manage chronic conditions, like diabetes or heart disease. Veterans measure their vital readings and symptoms and send them securely to their assigned RPM — HT Care Coordinator for review. The care coordinator collaborates with the veteran’s care team to help the veteran manage their care.
Veterans, you have many options for receiving health care during these trying times. Use them.
Remember, our monthly Citizen Potawatomi Nation Veterans Organization meetings are on the 4th Tuesday of each month. In May, it will be the 24th in the North Reunion Hall on CPN Powwow Grounds in Shawnee, Oklahoma, at 6 p.m. (or as soon as you can get there). All CPN veterans and spouses and their families are welcome. You don’t have to be a member to attend. Come check us out and visit.
Daryl Talbot, Commander