The AAMC, as an executive committee member of the Friends of VA Medical Care and Health Research (FOVA), hosted a May 16 congressional briefing in partnership with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Research and Development, titled Veterans Health Research: A Showcase and Advancements.
The event introduced the new VA chief research and development officer, Rachel Ramoni, DMD, ScD. Patricia A. Dorn, PhD, director of VA rehabilitation research and development service, also provided opening remarks. The briefing featured live demonstrations of VA rehabilitation research including:
- brain-computer interface;
- peripheral nerve interfaces for natural sensation and control in amputees;
- the standing wheelchair; and
- exoskeleton-assisted walking in persons with SCI.
The researchers all highlighted academic partners who had contributed to their success.
For FY 2018, the FOVA recommends $713 million for VA Medical and Prosthetic Research, a $38 million (5.6 percent) increase over the comparable FY 2017 level, and urges $65 million for the Million Veterans Program not to undercut other critical research priorities. In support of VA research infrastructure, FOVA recommends $50 million for major construction projects and $175 million for nonrecurring maintenance and minor construction.