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Veterans Hospital Administration Telehealth Utilization for Recreation and Creative Arts Therapies: A Brief Report.

Story KM, Flanagan ME, Brown HA, Robb SL, Damush TM, Otto D. Veterans Hospital Administration Telehealth Utilization for Recreation and Creative Arts Therapies: A Brief Report. Telemedicine journal and e-health : the official journal of the American Telemedicine Association. 2021 Aug 24.

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A brief query was fielded to Veterans Health Administration (VHA) facilities across the United States to provide an initial assessment of recreation therapy (RT) and creative arts therapy (CAT) telehealth utilization. To develop an understanding of barriers and identify potential solutions for better delivery of services, a cross-sectional survey was deployed to points of contact at 136 VHA facilities. The survey included questions across five areas: staff, infrastructure, barriers to use, training, and interventions being deployed. Descriptive statistics were calculated, and a thematic analysis of qualitative responses was conducted. The most frequent themes from aggregated responses indicated a need for hands-on training, reliable telehealth equipment, and accessible training and tools for Veteran patients who want to use telehealth services. Telehealth delivery of RT/CAT has increased services to Veteran patient populations; however, equipment and training are needed to expand consistent delivery to enhance patient reach across a national health care system.

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