The Department of Veterans Affairs, Washington, DC, recently announced that its 152 medical centers are now actively represented on the social networking website Facebook. Eric K. Shinseki, secretary of Veterans Affairs, explains the significance of the event, as it is, “An important milestone in the overall effort to transform how VA communicates with veterans and provide them with the healthcare and benefits they have earned,” Shinseki. He adds that the launch stemmed from requests from veterans and their families seeking relevant information delivered at the local level, “By leveraging Facebook, the Department continues to expand access to the VA, and embrace transparency and two-way conversation.”

According to the VA, a single Veterans Health Administration Facebook page has generated over 150 Facebook pages, 64 Twitter feeds, a YouTube channel, a Flickr page, and the VAntage Point blog. 

Robert Petzel, under secretary for health emphasizes that the social media presence and engaging of VA medical centers across the nation demonstrates the organization’s commitment, “To helping veterans understand their benefits and receive the healthcare their service has earned them,” Petzel says.

The VA reports that while its clinicians cannot discuss specific health concerns of individual veterans on the social media site, the staff monitors the VA’s sites closely daily and provides helpful information to veterans.

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Source: Department of Veterans Affairs