VA launches virtual pilot program targeted to mental health services for caregivers

A new virtual program launched by VA will pilot mental health services for military caregivers. Photo credit Department of Veterans Affairs

A virtual program to pilot mental health services for caregivers enrolled in the Department of Veterans Affairs Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers has been launched.

The new program will provide much-needed resources, tools and support for caregivers, according to a VA release.

“This program is a significant step forward in addressing the mental health needs of caregivers enrolled in PCAFC,” said Dr. Colleen Richardson, executive director of the Caregiver Support Program. “Through these virtual clinical resource hubs, CSP will provide the mental health resources our nation’s caregivers and their veterans need through counseling and support."

The clinical resource hub will focus on the unique mental health needs of caregivers through evidence-based therapeutic modalities with services centered around couples, family therapy and the individual needs of the caregiver, the release states.

The nation’s first clinical resource hub located, within the Ozarks VA, began seeing caregivers on May 1. Around 2,317 caregivers may be eligible to receive telehealth-based services through the pilot. Although most caregivers will receive care through telehealth, caregivers may access in-person counseling at local VA facilities if requested.

“Our caregivers are an integral health care team member providing critical and essential support to Veterans,” said Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks VA Director George Velez. “In turn, we need to support our caregivers. They are our most valuable resource, and providing mental and emotional health stability is essential to their overall well-being so that they too can live their best lives.”

The Caregiver Support Team will hire a clinical director to oversee program implementation and sustainment. Additionally, most clinical resource hubs will have three psychotherapists and one advanced medical support assistant to provide mental health counseling to eligible caregivers.

For more information about mental health services through the Caregiver Support Program, visit here.

Reach Julia LeDoux at

Featured Image Photo Credit: Department of Veterans Affairs