GUIDED IMAGERY NOW ON AN “APPROVED FOR USE” LIST AT THE VETERANS’ HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
More veterans will have access to guided imagery, meditation and other powerful, portable mind-body interventions, as of August 8, 2017….
It’s September, and, as always, we’re seeing a spike in orders from Veterans Administration hospitals from around the country.
By now we know that this is not from any brilliant marketing strategy on our part – it’s simply that clinical program directors are getting to the end of their fiscal year and they’re spending down whatever’s left in their budgets.
But there’s also a heartening new factor at play.
As of August 8th, Guided Imagery has been officially placed on an Approved for Use list at the VA.
This should result in more veterans having access to guided imagery, meditation and other powerful, portable mind-body interventions - hugely helpful, because it’s, self-administered, private, low cost, loadable to a phone or MP3 player, user friendly, and available 24/7, including 3 am when it’s just you and your anxiety. So this is big for our vets.
And now that we’ll have our new platform up and running in a couple weeks, we’ll be able to provide downloads and shortly thereafter, apps, at the blink of a blink. So this is big for us, too.
These seminal changes are thanks to the efforts of the VA’s new Office of Patient-Centered Care and Cultural Transformation, (i.e., Director Traci Gaudet MD), and Ben Kligler MD, Director of the Integrative Health Coordinating Center.
Both of these highly credentialed, enlightened beings are graduates of the University of Arizona’s Center for Integrative Medicine’s Fellowship Program, launched by Andy Weil MD and built by Victoria Maizes MD.
Andy Weil started this game changing, 2-year intensive training program in 2000, basically coining the term “Integrative Medicine” to replace the lesser language of “CAM”, or Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
They’ve since trained nearly 1200 physicians and, more recently, selected Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants. Many are now running departments in hospitals around the world and changing the way health care is delivered.
So now, happily, the VA has been impacted system wide. It’s a joy to see this. And as a part time faculty member, teaching guided imagery in this program, I’m proud to be even marginally connected to bunch.
Take care and be well.