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Veteran Community Partnerships

Annual report highlights milestones for Veteran Community Partnerships initiative

By Dr. Jamie Davis, Office of Community Engagement (OCE)

The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Veteran Community Partnerships (VCP) initiative directly contributes to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA’s) top priorities; according to its 2019 annual report, VCP’s activities supported Veterans’ well-being, encouraged their independence, and enhanced their quality of life. More than 40 community organizations collaborated with a VCP last year, impacting more than 7,700 Veterans through 124 sponsored events across the country. In addition, 249 VA staff members from 14 different service lines participated in the initiative, which comprises coalitions of Veterans and their caregivers; VA health facilities; and community agencies, health providers, and other organizations.

“VCPs are a way to bring VHA and community organizations together to work on common goals of improving access to care for Veterans,” said Sherri DeLoof, VHA coordinator for the VCP initiative. “The number of VCPs keeps growing because they work—providing opportunities for VHA employees to build relationships with staff at community organizations, gain information about resources, and collaborate on joint initiatives to address need.”

VA operates the largest integrated health care system in the U.S. and provides care to more than 9 million Veterans nationwide. The need for strong partnerships is crucial to VA’s mission to support the quality health care services that Veterans and their families deserve. The VHA Office of Community Engagement (OCE) is one of the offices that supports the VCP initiative through its mission to serve as a subject matter expert and resource for creating partnerships throughout VHA.

The success stories from the VCP initiative in 2019 are numerous:

  • The Pittsburgh VCP created an interdisciplinary team of Palliative Care and Mental Health trainers committed to improving mental health for Veterans in hospice care. The team trained 176 providers from 19 agencies across 15 counties about Veteran cultural competency, screening, prevention, and referral to ensure PTSD, suicide, and trauma are adequately addressed for Veterans receiving hospice care.
  • The San Antonio VCP promoted a better appreciation for end of life in their community by teaching patients what to expect and what to ask in clinical settings. Their goals within the next five years are to transform the way their community cares for Veterans with life-limiting illnesses and to ensure that Veterans have choices when it comes to their care, services, and benefits.
  • The Kentuckiana Veteran and Community Integration Coalition tripled the size of their group that includes 14 counties in Kentucky and Indiana. They presented at numerous conferences, held a “stand down” for homeless Veterans, developed online mental health and aging trainings and received two grants. These efforts served to educate and inform community providers enabling them to connect Veterans to services and resources to help them remain in their homes for as long as they desire.

This is only the beginning: in fiscal year 2021 and beyond, the VCP initiative plans to expand and sustain a VCP at each VA medical center. The VCP leadership team will also refine quarterly data collection tools to capture VCP activities, better communicate achievements, and develop of additional training for VCPs to ensure that Veterans, their families, and caregivers receive seamless, coordinated care in their community.

To learn more about how innovative public-private partnerships facilitated within OCE are supporting VA’s mission, visit

To learn more about the VCP initiative, click here.

External Link Disclaimer: This page contains links that will take you outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs website. VA does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of the linked websites.

Posted August 4, 2020