Mobile App Aims To Help L.A. Veterans Find Mental Health Support
Los Angeles-based developers have created a no-cost mobile health application that is designed to provide support to military veterans who are struggling with mental health conditions or other issues, the Los Angeles Times reports.
According to Department of Veterans Affairs data, up to 30% of military veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from some type of post-traumatic stress condition.
However, researchers note that that figure only represents veterans who have sought care at VA health care facilities.
Details of Mobile App
The mobile app -- which is called Position Report, or POS REP -- aims to help veterans:
- Identify other nearby veterans who are struggling with similar mental health problems or other issues; and
- Find nearby health centers, emergency care providers and other critical services.
According to the Times, the developers of POS REP have partnered with the Los Angeles chapter of Volunteers of America and the University of Utah's National Center for Veterans Studies.
In addition, the developers plan to launch a crowd-funding campaign to raise $500,000 to:
- Create an Android version of the app; and
- Expand its services to other cities in the U.S.
Julia Hoffman, national director of mobile health at the VA, said, "The basic justification of the app is absolutely sound in that social support, and especially ongoing social support, plays a key role in aiding those who are suffering."
Meanwhile, Jon Sherin, executive vice president and chief medical officer of the Volunteers of America, said his organization wants to train 100 military retirees to assist the app's users in Los Angeles (Bratek, Los Angeles Times, 8/17).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.