In a recent news article, KOCO News in Oklahoma City announced the availability of VA Health Chat for Veterans in OKC. VA Health Chat has been rolling out across 18 Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISNs) and is now live in almost all regions.
In OKC, the local VA Hospital hopes this will smooth the care journey for their Veterans. Wait times are sometimes long, with one Veteran noting, "I’ve spent many, many hours on the phone with the VA. Many hours on hold, waiting," said Kris Morgan, Air Force veteran.
The OKC VA launched the first app for Veterans in the local VA system to chat with their doctors and nurses and make appointments outside the VA. "It gives an opportunity for our veterans to talk live with our community care staff to try and build that process and make it a little bit easier," said Erica Love with the OKC VA.
VA Health Chat provides a faster way for Veterans to get help. Morgan said the VA Health Chat app is a game changer. "If the doctors don’t, the nurse answers or the PA answers. Almost immediately. They do have walk-ins, and you have to get there at like 8 o’clock in the morning, and there’s a pretty good chance you won’t get to see anyone until 1, 2 o’clock. It’d be a lot easier to sit in your recliner drinking a cup of coffee and email the doctor," Morgan said.Over 5.1 million Veterans now have access to VA Health Chat around the country. VA Health Chat is provided to Veterans by CirrusMD on behalf of the VA, through its agreement with the prime contract holder, Iron Bow Technologies.