The Veterans Health Administration Innovation Ecosystem (VHA IE) has launched a new initiative with Fitbit to help Veterans, caregivers and VA staff manage their health and wellness during the COVID-19 pandemic. This initiative, launched at, is focused on eligible Veterans, caregivers and VA staff who currently use Fitbit devices, and will provide them with free access to Fitbit’s paid programs and services to help them manage stress, improve sleep and increase physical activity.

VA has contracted with Fitbit to initially provide 10,000 eligible Veterans, caregivers and VA staff a 1-year free membership to Fitbit Premium. This includes access to guided programs, hundreds of workouts, mindfulness content, a wellness report and a health metrics dashboard. Participants will also have access to Fitbit Health Coaching, one-on-one coaching and guidance from a certified health coach or licensed health professional. VA encourages Veterans, caregivers and VA staff using Fitbit wearables to express their interest in participating in this opportunity by January 25, 2021.

Eligibility will be based on various factors such as whether an individual is a Veteran, already a Fitbit user and their location. Additionally, some Veterans who currently receive VA healthcare may be eligible to receive a Fitbit Sense, Fitbit’s most advanced health smartwatch.

VA’s goal is to build a Veteran community using innovative wearable technology focused on improving health and wellness. VA is working with Veteran Service Organizations and community-based organizations to explore how wearables (and other digital health technologies) can help Veterans and VA health care teams meet their health care needs.

“We see the potential of digital health to increase access and transform how we care for Veterans based on technologies like smartphones and mobile apps already being widely used,” said Joshua Patterson, director of Care and Transformational Initiatives, VHA IE. “This initiative aims to advance how our support becomes more personal when we better understand the day-to-day challenges facing every Veteran, their caregivers and VA staff, and especially now.”

Interested Veterans, caregivers and VA staff who currently use Fitbit devices are encouraged to express their interest in participating at

Allison Amrhein is the director of operations for the VHA Innovators Network and communications lead for the VHA Innovation Ecosystem.

Share this story

Published on Jan. 11, 2021

Estimated reading time is 1.9 min.

Views to date: 1,898


  1. shandella fields February 4, 2021 at 12:03 pm

    I got an email the other day letting me know that they are still going through the applications.

  2. Lisa G February 3, 2021 at 2:43 pm

    After applying myself and receiving this email on 1/13 ” I Thank you for applying to be a part of Fitbit Care’s program in collaboration with the VA. We will email you in January to let you know whether you have been selected to participate or whether you have been placed on the waiting list.” I never heard either way!.

    Now seeing all of your comments nobody seems to have heard back. I reached out to Fit Bit directly today, after sitting on hold for almost 20 mins. I was told they do not support this program and it was run through the VA. The agent had no clue about the program seems her supervisors didn’t either! I mentioned this website and comments maybe they will check it out! Good luck

    • Nonny February 3, 2021 at 11:14 pm

      Thanks for the update Lisa, I got the same email after signing up. VA really needs to follow through with Fitbit.

  3. Nonny January 28, 2021 at 10:35 am

    I’d also like to know an update on this this Fitbit program. I’m currently using Fitbit and have bought multiple Fitbit devices in the past. I applied for the program mid of January and received an email stating I’ll be notified in January.

  4. Chad Clayton January 28, 2021 at 10:22 am

    How do Veterans qualify for the Fitbit Sense smartwatch? Who do we contact?

  5. jamesha January 27, 2021 at 8:06 am

    when will the winners be announced or notified ?

  6. Jerry Lee Gunn January 25, 2021 at 8:46 pm

    I have it very useful in getting my stats recorded daily and to ensure I continue to work off the pounds

  7. Ralph B Tharpe January 25, 2021 at 6:18 pm

    I 100% disabled Veteran I in the move program this would be nice help me get fit

  8. Sharon Annette Dennis January 25, 2021 at 4:53 pm

    I am interested in the free Fit Bit. I am an employee but not a veteran. thank you.

  9. Michelle Howard January 25, 2021 at 9:33 am

    I would be interested in this as well

    • Deidre January 25, 2021 at 12:56 pm

      I am interested in this program. It is a wonderful way to give the gift of improved health resulting in better health outcomes for VA staff, veterans and caregivers!! Let’s become healthier now after being dormant during the pandemic.

  10. Otis C. Lawrence January 25, 2021 at 4:35 am

    How do I get in th program?

    i do I get enrolled in the program

  11. Ray Willinggam January 24, 2021 at 7:48 am

    The link provided has already been retired. Sounds like this program went nowhere fast!

  12. Cecilia Sterling January 22, 2021 at 11:51 pm

    well, it’s not January 25th yet, and they have closed the link.

  13. Kimberly Phillips January 20, 2021 at 1:57 pm

    Please feel free to ask your local VA Clinic if they have a Home Based Cardiac Rehabilitation program available also, if you have heart disease. During COVID this program has helped patients do the program without being seen in person and keeps them accountable for their own health.

  14. Jason Swain January 19, 2021 at 2:18 pm

    What a great idea! Do we have any sense of whether Google will be introducing a medical alert function to fitbit? That sounds like the next logical step. I’ve been using Alert1 for years and they’re great, but it would be nice to consolidate my technology a little bit.

  15. Drew Shedwick January 19, 2021 at 11:33 am

    Sorry, I already own a Garmin and we don’t qualify.

  16. Geri Marshall January 19, 2021 at 2:56 am

    I am a Caraegiver for my mom, 104 & a lifetime VFW member. My Dad died disabled from WWII. We are interested in Fitbitm if we qualify.

  17. Beaware January 19, 2021 at 1:02 am

    Now that google owns Fitbit, I wouldn’t touch their stuff.

    • Drew Shedwick January 19, 2021 at 11:34 am

      I HEAR THAT!
      Google is anti-American.

  18. Mystery Bradford January 18, 2021 at 12:08 am

    I am trying to lose more weight for a breast reduction and better health. So my kids have an Army mom to be proud of. Thank you

  19. Larry Snyder jr January 17, 2021 at 1:18 pm

    Navy SeaBee service related heart issues and sleep apnea,, have been looking at fit bit sense and other like devices.. how do I get in rolled in this to get fit bit sense.. And the other programs

  20. Melodi D Nelson January 17, 2021 at 9:50 am

    I’m interested in participating in the fitbit program,I am not a current fitbit participant. I’m in the MOVE program, the clinic I go to is in Springfield, MO.

  21. Charree Okoro January 17, 2021 at 1:49 am

    I am a Veteran and l am interested in joining this FitBit Program. I currently don’t have a FitBit, but l am very much interested.

  22. Terry Brown January 16, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    How do I apply for this program? I am at 100 percent P&T.I BELIEVE I would benefit greatly from this program.

  23. Brenda E Jamison January 15, 2021 at 9:41 pm

    I am a Vietnam era veteran.i hope I qualify for this program.i need one to help my sleep apnea, monitor my heart rate and blood pressure.i am also glad I found the information in order to apply..good luck to all

  24. Bruce Flint January 15, 2021 at 8:30 pm

    How do you apply for the free Fitbit Sense?

  25. Jennifer Johnson January 15, 2021 at 7:28 pm

    Just curious to know why location a factor in the selection process?

  26. David struble January 15, 2021 at 2:03 pm

    I am interested in getting in on your fitbit program to become healthier

  27. Francisco Javier Briseno January 15, 2021 at 1:40 pm

    What is the process and procedure for my VA primary doctor to write a consult referral to a fitbit sense?

  28. Julia Adams January 15, 2021 at 1:27 pm

    I am a caregiver for a Vietnam Era vet plus have health issues of my own. I don’t have a fitbit but know several people who do. I think it would be very helpful for me to have one.

  29. Melissa January 15, 2021 at 10:19 am

    I love my fitbit and the fitbit program! I’m excited and hope I get chosen for this! :)

    • Frederick C. Harbour January 15, 2021 at 11:50 am

      I am a Vietnam Veteran and am 80 percent disabled from Agent Orange. My cardiologist told me this week to monitor my blood pressure and keep a record of reading, and to begin walking as much as I am able to improve health. Fitbit would be an excellent way to monitor established goals. Please consider me for this wonderful offer. Thank you.

  30. Ronnie Dale McDonald January 15, 2021 at 10:14 am

    I am a Vietnam Veteran ( 1966 – 1967) and am 90 percent disabled from Agent Orange. Fitbit would be an excellent way to stay fit and monitor established goals. I have not had the funds to acquire what you are offering. Please consider me for this wonderful offer. Thank you and have a great day.

  31. Mary McDonald January 15, 2021 at 10:13 am

    Exercise is such a positive way of dealing with stress. I have been a caregiver for my father a Korean War veteran. Currently I am a caregiver for my son, who has a chemical imbalance and now my husband, a Vietnam veteran. Being involved in a program like this would be such a blessing to help alleviate stress.

  32. GERALDINE WINSTEAD January 15, 2021 at 9:59 am

    I don’t have a fitbit, but I’m interested in my heart health and other conditions. Please send me a fitbit sense. I’m disabled and my check provides for my necessities only.

  33. Michelle Gaston January 15, 2021 at 12:25 am

    How do Veterans qualify for the Fitbit Sense smartwatch? Who do we contact?

  34. Calandra Stanfield January 14, 2021 at 11:11 pm

    I dont have a fitbit, but I am totally interested in possibly qualifying for one and this program. Hopefully we will be updated on further requirements soon. I did go to the site listed for interested veterans.

  35. Tommie Ault January 14, 2021 at 6:54 pm

    How do we apply for this program? This would be an amazing tool for my veteran husband and I as his caregiver.

  36. Thomas Vunderink January 14, 2021 at 5:53 pm

    Thank you for this opportunity. I’ve been tracking my heart health for quite some time and would love to be a participant. I need to update my current watch, do you give recommendations on models.

  37. Jean Marrie Shanafelter January 14, 2021 at 4:50 pm

    I am a 68 year old single female veteran that lives in rural Pennsylvania. I have no one to walk or exercise with so I get lazy. Being part of Fitbit program would give me reason to get up and move. It would help my dog also, she has gain weight too.

  38. Marc Darden January 14, 2021 at 4:23 pm

    Can active duty military, who qualify as a veteran from previous enlistments, apply? Specifically those who are mandated to be enrolled into a fitness program?

  39. Lindale Muse January 12, 2021 at 6:39 pm

    This is great I have just been notified about physical surgery for my knees and this would help the physician keep track of my progress using the fitbit6 I would be honored to be apart of this project for Veterans

  40. Sharon Helton January 12, 2021 at 3:05 pm

    I would love to be part of this but don’t have a fitbit. Probably don’t meet eligibility for one either since I’m female.

  41. Deveatrice s Peterson January 12, 2021 at 2:57 pm

    Looking forward to this experience.

  42. William Westveer January 12, 2021 at 2:55 pm

    please sign us up ! will welcome this device to help with
    veteran & myself as a caregiver … Thanks

    William J. Westveer veteran & Linda Westveer caregiver
    Wyoming, MI

  43. David January 12, 2021 at 2:16 pm

    Are they (Fitbit) going to ask for a charge card number…so that after the year free they can charge us?

  44. Allen Pasqua January 12, 2021 at 1:31 pm

    How many posts are required?

  45. Allen Pasqua January 12, 2021 at 1:22 pm

    I appreciate how Much the VA is trying to keep us healthy with all the new programs

  46. Allen Pasqua January 12, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    I have it very useful in getting my stats recorded daily and to ensure I continue to work off the pounds.

  47. Allen Pasqua January 12, 2021 at 12:59 pm

    Yes I would like a new fit bit as I have lost the old one when the band broke.

  48. Walter F. Huff January 12, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    This partnership with Fitbit seems likely to help with my stress management. My personal interest is that I would like to see if it will help me with my pain management as well. Another area of interest is to see if my Virtual Reality headset stress relief programs will have identifiable positive results as well. I would like to document some comparisons with the Fitbit device when using VR and when I am not. I think a lot of us Vets with chronic pain and PTSD WILL be able to see improvement in coping with these issues by the use of VR but to document them in a home environment has been a challenge.

  49. Margaret R Hill-Grigson January 12, 2021 at 10:04 am

    As a disabled veteran with a tight budget, who is struggling with losing weight and getting fit I’d love to know how to apply for one of the Fitbit trackers and for the program. It would be great if you could tell us who we need to apply to in order to be a part of the program. Thanks!

  50. Jesse Trevino January 11, 2021 at 7:25 pm

    Read about all these programs but have not been contacted at all. Not even from my VA doctor or my team, if I have one

  51. Stephen Salkof January 11, 2021 at 4:16 pm

    I’m glad to hear that the VA is participating in many forms of alternative methods to keep active. These added benefits to Fitbit devices can assist our Veterans to get up and move. I also highly recommend participating and learning traditional Taiji (Tai Chi) as a chance to relieve stress, anxiety, PTSD symptoms, etc. Notice I said, “traditional” Taiji – yes, there is a difference for sure.

    • Littlewolf January 15, 2021 at 12:07 am

      Any recommendations for how to locate traditional tai chi programs?Reqs for receiving a fitbit tracker, am female also, is it only for male veterans?

Comments are closed.

More Stories

  • Clinical Resource Hubs telecardiology team ensure Veterans needing cardiology services receive continued, uninterrupted, even same-day care.

  • Ebony Dillard saw that patients who experience falls often have limited strength in their lower extremities. She designed a “Device for gait, Efficiency, and Balance.”

  • The SLICE & Simulation Showcase brought together simulation experts from across VA to share how their practices are improving Veteran care.