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Minneapolis VA Health Care System

 

Health Education

photo of a patient in Patient Education LibraryThe staff at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center care about you and your family. Your health is important to us. We want to assist you in learning how to live a healthy lifestyle and to learn ways to self-manage your own health. There are a number of health education resources available to Veterans at no cost.

The Veteran's Health Education staff serves both our inpatient and outpatient population.  Veteran's Health Education helps educate patients and family members about their healthcare.  There are many programs and classes offered to our Veterans.  The hospital has an extensive patient education library where patients can get informational materials and watch videos regarding their diagnosis and upcoming procedures.  There is a MyHealtheVet website for patients to follow VA news, reorder prescriptions and research health topics.

Patient Education Center

Our Patient Education Center is staffed by an experienced patient education librarian and program specialist. The Patient Education Center contains a large collection of easy-to-read health and wellness books, respected health education newsletters, videos and other materials. Private video viewing rooms are available.  Computers to access the health education website "My HealtheVet" are also available for use.

Hours: Monday-Thursday 8:00am-4:30pm, Friday 8:00am-12:00pm
Phone: 612-467-4214
Location: The Patient Education Center is located on the first floor, near the Outpatient Entrance. 

Veterans Health At Home - online resource 

Veteran's Health Education Programs and Classes

Living Well, Helping Veterans Manage Their Health is a six week Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP)* to help Veterans live a healthy life with chronic conditions.  Living Well is designed to provide health information in a very informal supportive group setting where Veterans learn from each other.

For more information, call 866-414-5058, extension 3352, or in Minneapolis, 612-467-3352.

For CDSMP and other Patient Education Programs closer to you please check the following resources:

In Minnesota:
Healthy Aging Minnesota* (non-VA website)
MeritCare* (non-VA website)

In Wisconsin:
Wisconsin Department of Health Services (non-VA website)


Recovery Skills Group is designed to help veterans learn about alcohol and drug use, which can impact many aspects of overall health.  These drop-in educational sessions will provide information about substance use and addiction, as well as strategies to use when you’re ready to make a change!  See more information about the Recovery Skills Group and schedule.
Anger Coping Skills classes are drop-in sessions to help you manage your anger more effectively. You will have the opportunity to learn strategies to improve self-control so you can stop engaging in verbal abuse, threatening behavior, and violent acts. Anger Coping Skills rotates through a three-session cycle (see below). You can start at any time, with any session. You are encouraged to participate in all three sessions, and you may repeat a session if needed.  Get more information by talking with your mental health provider.
Depression Management Skills classes are drop-in sessions to help you learn about depression and how you can deal with it more effectively. The class will rotate through a 3-session cycle covering different topics. You can start with any session. You are encouraged to attend all three sessions.  Session 1 includes basic information about depression and treatment options. Session 2 includes hob behavior affects mood (including review of behavioral activation).  Session 3 includes how thoughts affect mood (including review of cognitive restructuring, cognitive defusion and mindfulness).  Get more information by talking with your mental health provider.
The VA Tobacco Cessation Program is designed to help Veterans quit tobacco use through VA Quitline coaching and support.  Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT)/treatment is available for Veterans wishing to quit the use of tobacco products.  Self-enrollment by contacting the VA Tobacco Hotline at (612)467-4939 is encouraged or any VA provider can notify the Tobacco Treatment Specialist for you.  Watch for details about Tobacco Cessation group walk in classes which are currently being developed. 
MOVE! Weight Management Program helps Veterans lose weight, keep it off, and improve their health!  The tiered weight management program treatments range from self-management support (level 1) to outpatient group education sessions (level 2-3) and inpatient intensive treatment with possible bariatric surgery (level 4-5).  Contact the MOVE! Hotline at (612)629-7388 or toll free (866)414-5058 ext 7388.  Check out the MOVE! website at www.move.va.gov to find out more information about the program.
The VA Diabetes Education Program educates new diabetic Veterans and those needing a refresher on all aspects of diabetes management.  This includes initial and ongoing diagnosis and treatment, blood glucose testing, insulin administration and pre-diabetes conditions.  Ask your provider today for a Diabetes Education Consult to enroll in this program. 
The VA Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program provides pulmonary rehabilitation services to Veterans with chronic pulmonary disease through home based exercise and monitoring in addition to outpatient education classes (6 consecutive sessions).  Ask your provider today for a referral to the Pulmonary Service Program Coordinator.
Pain Management for Veterans: This walk-in class provides information for Veterans about talking to healthcare providers and living with chronic pain.  This class will resume in September.  Speak with your provider today to learn about chronic pain management.
The Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program uses mindfulness meditation techniques to help you overcome stress.  Mindfulness is an ancient form of meditation. It brings a new awareness of body sensations, thoughts and feelings. Mindfulness meditation opens a healing pathway for handling stress and pain. You can benefit from this program if you are open to trying a life-style change for 8 weeks, willing to practice 45 minutes a day, and are ready to take an active role in your healing process. Talk to your VA healthcare provider today to enroll in this program.
Cancer Clinical Trials
Clinicians at the Minneapolis VA participate in several clinical trials related to cancer prevention and treatment. These include investigator-initiated clinical trials, intergroup cooperative studies through the Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB) and Clinical Trials Support Unit (CTSU), as well as Industry-Sponsored clinical trials.

All clinical trials are discussed within the Hematology Oncology Section at Staff Meetings to discuss applicability to the Veterans Population as well as safety issues, prior to the trials being sent to the IRB for peer review. A list of ‘active’ clinical trials open at the Minneapolis VA is maintained and regularly updated by the clinical research nurse in the Hematology Oncology Section (Mary Jordheim, RN, BSN, OCN). This list is available to patients in the Cancer Resource Room/Chemotherapy Education Room.

Related Links:
National Cancer Institute (non-VA website)

ClinicalTrials.gov (non-VA website)

Cancer & Leukemia Group B (non-VA website)

Cancer Trials Support Unit (non-VA website)

Enrollment to clinical trials is encouraged whenever feasible; however, patients are made aware of the alternate treatment options available and the standard of care based on practice guidelines such as the NCCN.

Outpatient

Clinical staff provide ongoing health education during regularly scheduled outpatient clinic visits. Education will be focused on health promotion, upcoming tests and procedures, medications, diagnosis and treatments. Staff can also tell you about upcoming education classes that are available. During these visits, please ask your clinical staff for further information if your health questions are not answered.

Inpatient

Clinical staff begin the patient education process at the time of admission, during the hospital stay and at discharge. Our goal is to provide a hospital environment where patients continually receive updated health information, they are able to ask questions about their health, and their stay in the hospital is as comfortable as possible.

VATV

An on-demand education video system is available for all inpatient rooms, and in some waiting areas. Ask the staff for further information on how to access this system.