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Office of Health Equity


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Health Equity for Veterans

Health Equity for Veterans

Learn more about the VHA Office of Health Equity

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Applying an Equity Lens: The Difference in Equality and Equity

Equality vs. Equity

Many incorrectly use equality and equity in their conversations by believing that these concepts have the same meaning. Do you know the difference?

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Health Care Decisions Disparities Fact Sheet

Health Care Decisions

Office of Health Equity, in collaboration with National Center for Ethics in Health Care Releases the Health Care Decisions Disparities Fact Sheet.

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VHA Office of Health Equity

Equitable access to high-quality care for all Veterans is a major tenet of the VA healthcare mission. The Office of Health Equity (OHE) champions the elimination of health disparities and achieving health equity for all Veterans.  OHE supports the VHA's vision to provide appropriate individualized health care to each Veteran in a way that eliminates disparate health outcomes and assures health equity.

April 16 is National Healthcare Decisions Day

April 16, 2019 is National Healthcare Decisions Day – a day to “to inspire, educate and empower the public and providers about the importance of advance care planning.”

Don’t miss this opportunity to start thinking about advance care planning! Even if you’re healthy, it’s a good idea to complete an advance directive, which is an official document for writing down your decisions for future health care in case you’re unable to communicate those decisions yourself. If you have a serious illness, it’s especially important to discuss your health care goals and preferences with your loved ones and your health care team.

The Office of Health Equity is recognizing National Healthcare Decisions Day with our fact sheet on Improving Health Care Decision Making near the end of Life.  For advance care planning resources, visit Health Care Ethics Resources for Veterans, Patients, and Families.


Upcoming Focus on Health Equity and Action Cyberseminar

Opioid Use Disorder and Employment Disparities in Justice-Involved Veterans  

12:00 PM EST - Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Registration Link:

Session Description

There are disparities in opioid use disorder (OUD) in Veterans involved with the criminal justice system.  Providing access to substance use treatment and related services is extremely challenging and requires multifaceted approaches.

The April 2019 Focus on Health Equity and Action Cyberseminar will:

  • Highlight current OUD disparities and employment disparities for justice-involved Veterans;
  • Review VHA efforts to provide access to OUD treatment;
  • Review research on employment services for justice-involved Veterans and;
  • Provide recommendations to manage all stages of the criminal justice process for Veterans.

Fact Sheet

The Office of Health Equity produced a fact sheet on Opioid Use Disorder Among Justice-Involved Veterans to accompany this Cyberseminar.  The fact sheet can be found here.

Confirmed Speakers

  Andrea Finlay, PhD  Andrea Finlay PhD, MA, BA
Center for Innovation to Implementation (Ci2i) and
the National Center on Homelessness Among Veterans
   James LePage
James Lepage, PhD 
Chief (ACOS) of Research and Development
North Texas Veterans Health Care System
   Meredith Henne
Meredith Henne, BA, MPH(c)
Health Equity Fellow
Office of Health Equity 

 For more information about the Focus on Health Equity and Action Cyberseminar Series, click here.

National Veteran Health Equity Report

The National Veteran Health Equity Report (NVHER) details patterns and provides comparative rates of health conditions for vulnerable Veteran groups. Specifically, this report is designed to provide basic comparative information on the sociodemographics, utilization patterns and rates of diagnosed health conditions among the groups over which the VHA Office of Health Equity (OHE) has responsibility with respect to monitoring, evaluating and acting on identified disparities in access, use, care, quality and outcomes. The report allows the VA, Veterans, and stakeholders to monitor the care vulnerable Veterans receive and set goals for improving their care.

National Veteran Health Equity Report

What's New

  April 2019 - Opioid Use Disorder Among Justice-Involved Veterans Fact Sheet
  April 2019 - Health Care Decisions Fact Sheet
  March 2019 - Traumatic Brain Injury Disparities Fact Sheet
  February 2019 - African American Women Heart Disease Disparities Fact Sheet
  January 2019 - Obesity Disparities Fact Sheet
  December 2018 - Telehealth Disparities Fact Sheet
  November 2018 - American Indian/Alaska Native Veterans Fact Sheet
  October 2018 - Hispanic Veterans Fact Sheet
  October 2018 12:00PM EST - Focus on Health Equity and Action Cyberseminar: Making Health Equity Data Actionable with Visualizations [register]
  VA Office of Health Equity, in partnership with the FDA Office of Minority Health, releases Inclusion of Veterans in Clinical Trials video series for National Minority Health Month.
  Applying an Equity Lens Design for Veterans—Developed by VA Office of Health Equity—Selected for the Visualize Health Equity Project Sponsored by the National Academy of Medicine

Health Equity Data



Image US Chief Data ScientistHealth Equity Data

OHE is working to improve data availability, coordination, utilization and diffusion of research and health outcomes. Towards this goal, visit the Data page on this site for available datasets that can be used to better understand issues of health equity and disparities among Veterans.

Female presents to groupCyberseminars

In partnership with the VA Health Services Research and Development (HSR&D), OHE launched the Focus on Health Equity and Action Cyberseminars series. Each cyberseminar will spotlight activities that promote the implementation of the VHA Health Equity Action Plan (HEAP).

12:00 PM EST
  Making Health Equity Data Actionable with Visualizations [register]


Session titles and presenters will be updated closer to the event date. Sign up for the Office of Health Equity listserv to receive updates and to learn more about Veteran health equity issues.  

SecVA reaches out to shake another man's handPartners

The Office of Health Equity pursues strong partnerships with internal and external organizations to achieve equitable health for all Veterans.


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Office of Health Equity
Veterans Health Administration
810 Vermont Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20420

Email: VHA 10EB Action

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