Delivering Virtual Social Services for Homebound Veterans

As we honor men and women who served their country this month, HCA’s education and research (E&R) affiliate has received word of a new grant to address the psychosocial and health needs of homebound veterans in New York.

With support from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation, HCA E&R is partnering with Selfhelp Community Services, a home care and social services organization based in New York City, to pilot a new program for veterans using Selfhelp’s Virtual Senior Center (VSC) platform.

This program will connect participating homebound veterans to a secure online platform — the VSC — offering daily peer socialization, wellness, personal health management, cultural enrichment, professional assistance, and other supports specially tailored to veterans.

This platform is all the more important during the pandemic as traditional, in-person social services programs are curtailed or have occupancy limits.

The grant also supports the development of a VSC app and a tool to assist providers in assessing the need for — and appropriateness of — VSC services for patients. Funds are also reserved to help individuals who do not have the means or access to computers, tablets and other technologies that connect to the VSC platform.

The initial pilot will identify 40 veterans for participation, with an eye toward wider access by veterans through partnership and promotional efforts with veterans’ organizations and others.

Building on an Existing VSC Partnership

This veterans’ initiative complements another VSC partnership between HCA E&R and Selfhelp. Our program has already expanded the capacity of Selfhelp’s VSC to enroll any home care patient for this service no matter where they reside in New York State, thanks to a separate grant from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation. We are especially honored to complement this effort with a tailored program for veterans. Please visit the statewide VSC page here to learn more.