VA fellows improve health services for U.S. veterans

By Sylvia Wrobel | Emory Nursing | Jan. 8, 2013

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Ingrid Duva (left), Corrine Abraham and Michael Saenger are the first fellows in a program that engages nurses and physicians in quality improvement research at the Atlanta VAMC.

A few years ago, Emory built a pedestrian bridge to join its campus with that of the Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC), a university partner for more than 60 years. In 2012, those ties grew stronger with the launch of the National VA Quality Scholars Advanced Fellowship program at the Atlanta VAMC by Emory nursing and medical faculty.

Now one of eight programs nationwide, the program trains leaders who can develop new knowledge, or innovative applications of existing knowledge, to improve health care services for U.S. veterans. 

When the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) decided to expand the fellowship program from six to eight sites, Bethany Robertson DNP CNM of the School of Nursing and Anne Tomolo MD MPH of the School of Medicine jumped at the chance to make Atlanta one of the new locations. Thanks to their efforts, the first cohort of fellows—two faculty members in nursing and one in medicine—began a two-year immersion into the world of quality improvement at VAMC this past summer.

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