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Evidence-Based Research

New Research Just Published!

VA’s Health Services Research & Development (HSR&D) research publication translates research into quality health care for veterans. The HSR&D Winter 2021 issue focuses on Whole Health.

Access this edition of HSR&D's premier research publication to read more on Whole Health implementation throughout VA's health care system, a study on VA Health Coaches and Peer Specialists, Trauma Senstive Yoga and much more.

VA researchers are conducting studies to determine which complementary and integrative health (CIH) approaches are truly safe and effective. This information can help clinicians and patients make informed decisions about treatment options utilizing CIH and other Whole Health approaches.

Add your selections to the fields above to search the Veterans’ handouts.

A Comprehensive Population Health-Level Strategy for Pain

Efforts to reduce the burden of pain in the United States cannot be achieved without an expanded and sustained investment in basic and clinical research on the biopsychosocial mechanisms that produce and maintain chronic pain and development of safe and effective pain treatments.

Topic: CIH Therapies & Chiropractic Care

Compendium on Use of Complementary and Integrative Health Therapies and Chiropractic Care at the VA

As a part of Veteran Health Administration’s (VA’s) Whole Health System transformation, there has been a large-scale expansion of complementary and integrative health therapies as part of standard medical care. This expansion is being driven by several factors.

Topic: CIH Therapies & Chiropractic Care

Library of Research Articles on Veterans and Complementary and Integrative Health Therapies and Chiropractic Care

The library provides the citation (with links to either the actual article or to its page in PubMed) as well as the abstract, if available, for papers published beginning in 2010. The library will be updated annually.

Topic: CIH Therapies & Chiropractic Care

Registry of Current Research on Veterans and Complementary and Integrative Health Therapies and Chiropractic Care

We are pleased to announce the second edition of the VA Office of Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation’s (OPCC&CT) and the VA Complementary and Integrative Health Evaluation Center (CIHEC) QUERI Partnered Evaluation Center’s Registry of Current Research on Veterans and Complementary and Integrative Health (CIH) Therapies and Chiropractic Care.

Topic: CIH Therapies & Chiropractic Care

CAM in the United States Military: Too Little of a Good Thing?

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) covers a heterogeneous spectrum of ancient to new-age approaches that purport to prevent or treat disease.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

Complementary and Alternative Medicine for US Veterans and Active Duty Military Personnel: Promising Steps to Improve Their Health

This special issue presents the most recent evidence from health services research on the use of complementary and alternative medicine among U.S. veterans and active military personnel.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

Innovations in Care: Complementary and Integrative Health in the Veterans Health Administration Whole Health System

Consistent with its long history of innovation, the Veterans Health Administration has recently committed to a massive expansion of the provision of complementary and integrative health approaches as part of standard care, and to an even more massive transformation to a Whole Health System of care.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

Progress of Veterans Health Administration Complementary and Integrative Health Research Along the Quality Enhancement Research Initiative Implementation Roadmap

This special issue, The Implementation of Complementary and Integrative Health Therapies in the Veterans Health Administration, highlights how research on complementary and integrative health therapies in the Veterans Health Administration has progressed along the Quality Enhancement Research Initiative Implementation Roadmap.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

The Whole Health Transformation at the Veterans Health Administration

This paper describes the first 10 years of the Veterans Health Administration's transformation to a Whole Person/Whole Health approach to care and provides lessons learned during that process regarding large-scale system change.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

Whole Health in the Veterans Health Administration

This article describes some of the progress and future challenges in the implementation of the Whole Health approach across the Veterans Health Administration.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

Whole Health: The Vision and Implementation of Personalized, Proactive, Patient-driven Health Care for Veterans

The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is undertaking one of the most significant changes in the philosophy and practice of health care ever embarked on by an organized health care system.

Topic: Commentaries & Editorials

Enhancing Well-Being Measurement (June 2021 Meeting between VA and NIH) Report

In collaboration with the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, the Office of Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation hosted a 4-hour virtual forum to discuss the state of well-being measurement.

Topic: Enhancing Well-Being Measurement

EPCC: Whole Health System of Care Evaluation (February 18, 2020)

This White Paper is a progress report on implementation of the Whole Health System at the 18 flagship sites after 2 years.

Topic: Evaluation of Patient Centered Care (EPCC)

EPCC: Whole Health System of Care Evaluation Appendices (February 18, 2020)

Appended material to the progress report on implementation of the Whole Health System at the 18 flagship sites after 2 years.

Topic: Evaluation of Patient Centered Care (EPCC)

Key Insights and Lessons Learned: Training VA Clinicians on Whole Health Approaches (June 1, 2021)

Over the course of 3 years, the EPCC team studied approach and progress at 18 VA flagship sites made toward transforming facilities into Whole Health systems of care. This summary highlights important lessons to consider for widescale training in primary care and mental health services.

Topic: Evaluation of Patient Centered Care (EPCC)

Whole Health Clinical Champions: Lessons Learned from Flagship Sites (June 1, 2021)

This report provides an overview of the roles and responsibilities of clinical champions in a subsample of Whole Health flagship sites.

Topic: Evaluation of Patient Centered Care (EPCC)

Aromatherapy and Essential Oils

VA’s Evidence Synthesis Program (ESP) Center in Portland, Oregon, conducted a review to provide VA with a broad overview of the effectiveness of aromatherapy and essential oils, and the health conditions for which these interventions have been examined.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Art Therapy

This evidence mapping project aims to help provide guidance to VA leadership about the distribution of evidence on art therapy to inform policy and future directions for it within the VA healthcare system.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Evidence Map of Acupuncture

This evidence mapping project on acupuncture will help provide guidance to VA leadership about the distribution of evidence to inform policy and clinical decision making.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Evidence Map of Tai Chi

 

Topic: Evidence Maps

Evidence Map of Mindfulness

This evidence map provides an overview of “mindfulness” intervention research and describes its volume and focus.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Evidence Map of Yoga

This evidence mapping project evaluates the existing evidence on yoga for common clinical conditions in Veterans.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Evidence Map on Massage for Pain

This mapping project provides a visual overview of the distribution of evidence for massage therapy for indications of pain, as well as an accompanying narrative that will help stakeholders interpret the state of the evidence to inform policy and clinical decision-making.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Guided Imagery, Biofeedback and Hypnosis

These evidence maps will be used to guide and support decision-making about these treatment modalities in the Veterans Health Administration.

Topic: Evidence Maps

The Effectiveness of Health Coaching

This systematic review evaluated the effects of health coaching interventions among adults with chronic medical conditions on clinical, behavioral, and self-efficacy outcomes.

Topic: Evidence Maps

Examining the Impact of a Peer-Led Group Program for Veteran Engagement and Well-Being. March 2021.

A pilot study was conducted to explore the impact of a peer-led group-based program that teaches Veterans to become empowered to engage in their own health and well-being through mindful awareness practices, self-care strategies, and setting life goals.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Veterans Health Administration’s Whole Health System of Care: Supporting the Health, Well-Being, and Resiliency of Employees. May 2021.

This paper provides an overview of the Whole Health System of care in VHA and applicability in addressing employee resiliency a brief history of employee well-being efforts in VHA, new priorities from VHA leadership as they relate to Employee Whole Health strategy and implementation, a summary of the impacts of WHS of care delivery on employees.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Achieving Whole Health: A Preliminary Study of TCMLH, a Group-Based Program Promoting Self-Care and Empowerment Among Veterans. May 2021.

This study collected preliminary evidence on the efficacy of Taking Charge of My Life and Health (TCMLH), a Whole Health group-based program that emphasizes self-care and empowerment on the overall health and well-being of veterans, a population burdened with high rates of multiple chronic conditions.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Lessons Learned from VHA’s Rapid Implementation of Virtual Whole Health Peer-led Groups during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Staff Perspectives. January 2022.

This study involved research to understand staff perspectives on the feasibility, challenges, and advantages of conducting Taking Charge of My Life and Health (TCMLH) groups virtually.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Whole Health Use and Interest Across Veterans with Co-Occurring Chronic Pain and PTSD: An Examination of the 18 VA Medical Center Flagship Sites. February 2022.

This evaluation examines patterns of Whole Health services use among Veterans with chronic pain, comparing those with and without posttraumatic stress disorder.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

From patient outcomes to system change: Evaluating the impact of VHA's implementation of the Whole Health System of Care

This study describes how a partnered evaluation of the Whole Health (WH) system of care—comprised of the WH pathway, clinical care, and well-being programs—produced patient outcomes findings, which informed Veterans Health Administration policy and system change.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Provider Perspectives of Battlefield Acupuncture: Advantages, Disadvantages and Its Potential Role in Reducing Opioid Use for Pain. Sept 2020.

This study was conducted to identify the advantages and disadvantages of battlefield acupunctur from providers’ perspectives.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Does Offering Battlefield Acupuncture Lead to Subsequent Use of Traditional Acupuncture? Sept 2020.

This analysis examines subsequent use of traditional acupuncture after undergoing battlefield acupuncture.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Participating in Complementary and Integrative Health Approaches Is Associated With Veterans' Patient-reported Outcomes Over Time. Sep 2020.

This study examined the association of participation in complementary and integrative health with Veterans’ patient-reported outcomes over time.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Addressing Consumer and Patients' Preferences and Needs Whole Health System of Care Improves Health and Well-Being and Reduces Opioid Use for Veterans with Chronic Pain. Abstract . Aug 2020.

VHA initiated a demonstration program in 18 VA Medical Centers to implement its Whole Health System. This report describes the program's impact on Veterans.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Development of observational rating scales for evaluating patient-centered communication within a whole health approach to care. Jul 2020.

This study describes the development of the Observational Whole Health Measure for evaluating the extent to which primary care providers in the Veterans Health Administration engaged in patient-centered care in the context of a holistic approach to care known as "Whole Health."

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Transforming the Veterans Affairs to a Whole Health System of Care: Time for Action and Research. Apr 2020.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has been promoting patient-centered care through the implementation of a Whole Health approach.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Biopsychosocial benefits of movement-based complementary and integrative health therapies for patients with chronic conditions. Mar 2020.

This study involved conducting focus groups with 31 patients enrolled in movement-based therapy classes (qigong and yoga) designed for patients with chronic illness at two large VA medical centers between April and May 2014.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Integrating Personalized Care Planning into Primary Care: A Multiple-Case Study of Early Adopting Patient-Centered Medical Homes. Feb 2020.

This case study examined the adoption of personalized care planning in patient-centered medical home clinics to identify processes and organizational characteristics that facilitated or hindered use in routine practice.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

A scale to measure nurses' and providers' patient centered care in primary care settings. Dec 2019.

A new scale, the PC2:NaPS, measures patients’ experiences of primary care.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Utilization and Perceived Effectiveness of Mindfulness Meditation in Veterans: Results from a National Survey. Sep 2019.

This study involved secondary data analysis of a national survey to evaluate utilization and perceived effectiveness of mindfulness relative to other complementary and integrative health approaches among military veterans.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Complementary and Integrated Health Approaches: What Do Veterans Use and Want. July 2019.

Using a large national convenience sample of veterans who regularly use the VHA, researchers conducted the first national survey of veterans’ interest in, frequency of and reasons for use of, and satisfaction with 26 complementary and integrative health approaches.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Mindfulness meditation for workplace wellness: An evidence map. Jun 2019.

This project involved searching nine electronic databases, dually-screening all reviews, and consulting topic experts to identify systematic reviews on mindfulness interventions.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Synthesizing the Strength of the Evidence of Complementary and Integrative Health for Pain. May 2019.

This analysis synthesizes the strength of the evidence for four types of complementary and integrative therapies on pain: acupuncture, therapeutic massage, mindfulness techniques, and tai chi.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

What Should Health Care Systems Consider When Implementing Complementary and Integrative Health: Lessons from Veterans Health Administration. Mar 2019.

This report evaluates a large-scale, research-operations partnered effort to understand the challenges faced by VA sites and the strategies used to address these to better support VA's implementation of complementary and integrative health nationally.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Time to Listen More and Talk Less. Jan 2019.

This article examines reasons for the disconnect between the goals of patient-centered care, the goals of providers and patients, and actual communication in clinical encounters.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Patient-Centered Care in Primary Care Scale: Pilot Development and Psychometric Assessment. Jan 2019.

A pilot study was conducted to develop and psychometrically assess a scale measuring nurses' and other providers' patient-centered care in Veteran Affairs primary care clinics.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Challenges and Strategies for Implementing Battlefield Acupuncture in the VA: A Qualitative Study of Provider Perspectives. Oct 2018.

This research identified the challenges providers experience in implementing battlefield acupuncture and successful strategies used to overcome these challenges.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Battlefield Acupuncture in the Veterans Health Administration: Effectiveness in individual and group settings for pain and pain comorbidities. Oct 2018.

This study examined the use and effectiveness of battlefield acupuncture for back pain and four pain-comorbid conditions in group and individual sessions at a large Veterans Affairs medical center.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Evaluating broad-scale system change using the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research: challenges and strategies to overcome them. Aug 2018.

This paper discusses the issues that arose using the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research to qualitatively assess the factors influencing implementation of cultural transformation.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

How can healthcare organizations implement patient-centered care? Examining a large-scale cultural transformation. Mar 2018.

This study was conducted to understand key organizational factors for implementing patient-centered care cultural transformation through an examination of efforts in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Patient Centeredness in Electronic Communication: Evaluation of Patient-to-Health Care Team Secure Messaging. Mar 2018.

The objectives of this analysis were to understand why patients and health care team members exchange secure messages and examine the socioemotional tone engendered in these messages.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Do patient perceptions of provider communication relate to experiences of physical pain? Feb 2018.

This is the first study to examine the relationships between patients’ perceptions of provider communication, pain intensity and self-efficacy for managing chronic disease.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

What Patients and Providers Want to Know About Complementary and Integrative Health Therapies. Jan 2018.

This project was conducted to determine what information providers and patients most wanted to learn about complementary and integrative health therapies and their preferred format for receiving this information.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Challenges in Implementing Personalized Care Planning. Nov 2017.

This article highlights the important cultural challenges faced in the implementation of personalized care planning.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

An evidence map of the effect of Tai Chi on health outcomes. Systematic Reviews. Jul 2016.

This evidence map describes the volume and focus of tai chi research reporting health outcomes.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Provider perspectives on and experiences with engagement of patients and families in implementing patient-centered care. Dec 2015.

This project studied the efforts of four Veterans Affairs medical centers to engage patients and families in patient-centered care transformation.

Topic: OPCC & CT Sponsored Research

Library of Research Articles on Veterans and CIH Therapies

 

Topic: Library of Research Articles

Clinician Tools

 

Topic: Clinician Tools