The stress of war, multiple deployments, and frequent moves can affect the wellness of military families. Children and spouses can experience anxiety, changes in relationships with family and friends, isolation or emotional challenges in dealing with deployments, illness or injury, and high mobility.
As part of the Joining Forces initiative, KU Medical Center is helping to call attention to the critical issues facing veterans and military families and expand access to wellness programs, and resources for military spouses and families.
KU Medical Center faculty, staff and students are helping to provide targeted health care for military personnel and their families, including:
Faculty and staff from KU Medical Center's Center for Child Health and Development travel to the Army's Fort Leavenworth and Fort Riley installations several times a year to run a pediatrics outreach clinic to provide early intervention for children with developmental issues.
The Veterans Administration has partnered with the Center for Telemedicine & Telehealth to expand mental health services across the state of Kansas, allowing veterans in rural areas easier access to VA doctors without having to travel long distances. This program is the first of its kind in the nation.
Ajay Bansal, M.D., an assistant professor of gastroenterology, has been providing high quality care to veterans suffering from reflux disease, difficulty swallowing and cancer of the esophagus.
Several KU Medical Center audiologists and speech-language pathologists do regular rounds at the VA medical centers in Kansas City and Topeka to treat patients dealing with hearing and speech problems.
Rick Kellerman M.D., professor and chair of Department of Family and Community Medicine at the School of Medicine-Wichita, produced a podcast featuring Francesca Cimino M.D., who was stationed with the NATO Multinational Medical Unit at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan and was in charge of the traumatic brain injury (TBI) clinic in Kandahar. The interview focused on TBI, blast injury syndromes, post traumatic stress disorder, suicide risk and reintegration of returning veterans and families.
As part of the KU School of Medicine's Graduate Medical Education program, 99 residents in a wide variety of specilaties are serving rotations at VA medical centers and hospitals in the region.
The KU School of Medicine's Department of Biostatistics and Center for Biostatistics and Advanced Informatics is currently developing a comprehensive prostate cancer database for the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center and other VAMCs.