Tele-health has been a priority at VA and we’ve made great strides in the care we can offer Veterans. From video conferencing between physician and patient to our mobile app “Annie.” I’ve personally used mobile apps and digital platforms to connect with my therapist. The convenience helps preserve the valuable resource of time and the comfort allows patients to receive the care they need with less stress on their daily lives. VA’s efforts in using technology to reach and care for Veterans has been grouped under our Office of Connected Care.
The Office of Connected Care focuses on improving health care through technology by engaging Veterans and care teams outside of traditional health care visits. By bringing together VA digital health technologies under one umbrella, the Office of Connected Care is enhancing health care coordination across VA and supporting Veterans’ participation in their own care.
This week I talk with Dr. Jennifer MacDonald, Director of Clinical Innovations and Education, VHA Connected Care. She shares her time in the military, becoming a doctor, and how VA is using technology to care for Veterans at a distance. We’ll cover My HealtheVet, VA Telehealth Services, VA Mobile, and more.
About Dr. MacDonald:
Dr. Jennifer MacDonald is new member of the Veterans Health Administration’s Office of Connected Care team and is leading the charge for greater adoption of many VA-developed, clinical-facing mobile applications. She is a practicing Family Medicine physician and U.S. Army Veteran experienced in leading complex system transformation and dedicated to patient, family, and provider empowerment through the strategic delivery of technology-enabled, high quality, equitable care.
Prior to joining VHA, Dr. MacDonald served as a White House Fellow and Advisor to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, where she led efforts to advance global health security, immigration detention health system reform, community resilience to counter violent extremism, and non-traditional aviation technology policy. She served 11 years in the Minnesota Army National Guard and deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, earning a Bronze Star for high profile mission achievement and volunteer humanitarian medical work. She completed her Family Medicine training at the University of California, Los Angeles, and medical school at the University of Minnesota.