Prosthetic Resources for Veterans
Over a quarter of veterans living in the United States are disabled. The VA reports that the number of veterans using prosthetics or other assistance devices has increased sharply over the past decade. To support the number of veterans requiring artificial limb support, the Veterans Benefits Administration, along with many charitable organizations offer multiple programs to help disabled service men and women receive the support they need to lead more active lives.
Through the VA's Rehabilitation and Prosthetic Services, veterans can take advantage of medical rehabilitation, prosthetic and sensory aids services. This office has clinicians on staff with specific prosthetic skills. The staff members are trained to help match device needs to veterans; thereby ensuring that individuals receive the exact type of prognosis and support required to help them lead the the most functional life.
While many may immediately associate the VA’s Rehabilitation and Prosthetic Services with artificial limbs only, their services go far beyond just limb support. The program partners with different VA facilities to also offer: Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (including Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Kinesiotherapy; Prosthetic and Sensory Aids Service; Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) System of Care; Amputation System of Care, and a few others.
When veterans need support beyond the VA or when navigating the vast VA system becomes too cumbersome, there are many charitable organizations across the US that were created to help veterans with disabilities. The Disabled American Veterans Charity (DAV) (www.dav.org) provides free assistance to veterans with disabilities to ensure they understand their benefits. For veterans or families looking for a place to start, the DAV is a great option.
Another great organization is the Given Limb Foundation. The Given Limb Foundation provides services for veterans and other individuals with amputations. This organization prides itself on its level of personal attention to implementation. Grant money is monitored carefully to ensure the most fruitful outcome for the limb recipient.
The Gary Sinise Foundation (created by actor Gary Sinise) is unique in the sense that they provide adaptive homes for soldiers injured in the line of duty. However, the do also have a series of programs to further aid disabled vets. The Sinise Foundation can help veterans get rehabilitative services, as well as prosthetic limb support. This organization also produces numerous festivals throughout the country to honor veterans and their service to our country.
And no list would be complete without mentioning the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP). WWP has become a well-recognized charity for many reasons. This organization goes above and beyond help and support. WWP helps veterans get their lives back together with a multitude of program types. Whether a veteran needs to find work, community support, disability and rehabilitation services or needs other mental health services, the WWP can help them find the right resource. The distinction between the WWP and other programs is the sense of community the charity helps to facilitate. Peers comfort peers throughout the country, and through this spirit of community, the organization continues to thrive.
Written by Brook Appelbaum