Salus University, Elkins Park, Pa, announced that several organizations were involved in the Salus Veterans Readiness Initiative Multisensory Screening and Care pilot program in April 2015, which offered free multisensory screenings (vision, hearing, balance), follow-up treatment, and rehabilitation for student veterans. Salus University, the Philadelphia VA Medical Center (PVAMC), Montgomery County Community College (MCCC), Community College of Philadelphia (CCP) and the Department of Defense Hearing Center of Excellence and Vision Center of Excellence collaborated on the health screening program.
According to the announcement, Salus optometry faculty, audiology faculty, and students conducted customized multisensory screenings at CCP and
MCCC. PVAMC provided on-site liaison and outreach, including assistance with VA health care enrollment and case management. Salus University reports that this screening program will serve as a model as the initiative continues.
Many veterans have been exposed to blasts and other trauma, which can cause mild traumatic brain injury and/or post-concussion syndrome. Exposure to blast and trauma is also associated with sensory dysfunction and symptoms including hearing loss, blurry vision, headaches, aversion to light and sounds, and dizziness. These problems can substantially hinder the community reintegration process for veterans, Salus reports, including educational performance and employability.
While veterans with sensory dysfunction typically pass standard vision and hearing tests, a more in-depth exploration using specialized visual and auditory assessment can uncover these conditions and dictate the appropriate treatment.
“Leading the Navy Medical Service Corps gave me a unique understanding of the health care issues faced by returning veterans,” said Salus University President and former Deputy Surgeon General of the US Navy Michael H. Mittelman, OD, MPH. “This program will help these young men and women get back to their lives. We are proud to partner with these outstanding organizations to offer veterans the health care they need and deserve.”
Source: Salus University, PVAMC