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The Army's Community-Based Health Care Initiative: An Innovative Military Case Management Program

Chenault, Janet C. BSN, RN

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As more Army National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve soldiers are called to active duty, there has been a rise in injuries sustained or aggravated by deployment. This increase caused an overwhelming explosion in the number of soldiers requiring prolonged medical care. The U.S. Army developed a program to address Army National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve soldiers requiring extended recuperation periods. This article addresses the Army's Community-Based Health Care Initiative. This initiative entails case management through the use of technology involving fax, phone, and e-mail and focuses on reduction in the number of medical holdover soldiers at military treatment facilities. Community-based healthcare organizations allow Army National Guard and Army Reserve soldiers to receive medical care in their hometown while living at home, working for the military, and continuing to receive full benefits as an active duty soldier.

1LT Janet Chenault, BSN, RN, has been a member of the Virginia Army National Guard for the past 9 years. She was mobilized in January of 2005 to work as a case manager with the newly established Virginia CBHCO. She has 7 years of medical—surgical nursing experience, with the last 2 years in critical care. Ms. Chenault obtained her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing from Old Dominion University in August of 2004. She is currently pursuing her master's degree in nursing with a concentration in nursing education at Old Dominion University.

Address correspondence to 1LT Janet C. Chenault, BSN, RN, Old Dominion University, 2200 Mill Crossing Drive, Apt 317, Virginia Beach, VA 23454 (janet.chenault@us.army.mil).

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of Army, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.

The author thanks several individuals for their time and effort in the development and publication of this article. COL Timothy Joost, AN, was a true mentor throughout this process. He not only provided positive feedback throughout the development of this article but also went out of his way to help obtain permission for publication. Second, the author thanks LTC Kenneth Braddock for obtaining approval for publication. The author also thanks Old Dominion University Graduate Nursing Program for providing her with the skills necessary to write this article and the courage to submit it for publication.

© 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.