For more than 90 years, VA has initiated groundbreaking research to improve the lives of Veterans. Now, a new study has been launched to help the brave women who served our country in uniform as they embark on a new mission: parenthood, thanks to a partnership between the University of Massachusetts Medical School and VA Central Western Massachusetts Healthcare System.

The Center for Maternal and Infant Outcomes Research in Translation (COMFORT) study is aimed at better understanding the needs and experiences of female Veterans during pregnancy and following childbirth. Led by Dr. Kristin Mattocks, associate chief of staff for research and development with VA Central Western Massachusetts Healthcare System, the COMFORT study will interview women about their pregnancies and post-birth experiences at 13 VA sites across the country. The efforts of Dr. Mattocks and colleagues can help improve patient care coordination.

Dr. Mattocks, who notes that the number of female Veterans having babies and using VA benefits in the past five years has nearly doubled, tells UMassMedNow that:

“Coordinating maternity care with ongoing VHA care for pregnant veterans is crucial because many women using VHA care have complex medical and mental health conditions that may increase their risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes.”

In the same article, Mattocks also states:

“Research drives policy at the VA. This is advocacy-based research. We are doing this work to push the agenda to make sure women veterans are getting the care they need.”

If you want to make your own contribution to helping female Veterans getting the care they need – whether you’re a nurse a physician, a social worker or something else entirely, consider a career with VA. You will find so much personal and professional satisfaction working here. There are other advantages, too: a comfortable salary, outstanding benefits and great work/life balance, just like the private sector. Learn more at Join VA.

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Published on Apr. 1, 2016

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One Comment

  1. Tamika McGriff April 11, 2016 at 9:14 pm

    I am a female veteran who experienced great difficulty getting pregnant as well as complications during my pregnancy. The VA assisted me in infertility treatments as well. However, when I became pregnant somehow the ball was dropped on medical bills. I now have balances due that have gone to collections because I was unable to pay the debt. I had a child with a tumor and was given the option to abort. After I decided that wasn’t an option, I had to endure regular appointments to monitor myself and my baby. Although I would love to have one more child, I don’t feel as if I will have the support as a female veteran. I pray your program is true and sincere and really help other female veterans.

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