Adagio Health and RAND Corporation conduct Women Veterans Needs Assessment

November 10, 2022 by Adagio Health

“Don’t forget about us.”

That’s one sentiment that has been shared as Adagio Health and RAND Corporation conduct one of western Pennsylvania’s first-ever Women Veterans Needs Assessment. The unique initiative is grant-funded in the amount of $168,000 from Highmark Foundation, along with funding from Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services that Pennsylvania Senator Jay Costa (D), Senator Lindsey Williams (D), Representative Natalie Mihalek (R), and former Senator Pam Iovino helped to secure on behalf of Adagio Health. 

At times referred to as “invisible veterans,” women veterans are a group that has been historically overlooked and underappreciated – with their needs left underexamined. Adagio Health has supported veterans accessing the organization’s health services since 2018. Many of those patients and clients are women veterans. In 2018, Adagio Health set a goal of further expanding the organization’s services and care for women veterans. Now, Adagio Health has partnered with the RAND Corporation to conduct a Women Veterans Needs Assessment – reported to be the first-of-its-kind assessment on this topic in western Pennsylvania.

“We are proud to be engaged in this work, and it is our privilege to provide care and services to women veterans in western Pennsylvania,” said BJ Leber, President and CEO of Adagio Health. “We are grateful for the generous support and ongoing commitment to women veterans demonstrated by our partners at Highmark Foundation, and by all those who support this work. Women veterans are a unique and oftentimes vulnerable population, and we look forward to better understanding their needs when the RAND report is released next year.”

According to a 2015 study by Carter and Kidder, only 38% of veterans are satisfied with veteran services in their communities. Another report by Perkins, Aronson, and Olson cites that women veterans are more likely than male veterans to be low-income, food insecure, and to be victims of military sexual abuse and trauma. Previous reports have also suggested that some women veterans choose not to receive care at their closest VA medical center – with reasons for that decision ranging from extended wait times for appointments, lack of transportation or access to a VA Center, or gender discrimination in a male-dominated military system.

“Highmark Health has a long history of supporting veterans throughout the communities we serve. At the Highmark Foundation, we are thrilled to continue our partnership with Adagio Health to shine a spotlight on improving the overall health and well-being of female veterans living throughout Pennsylvania,” said Yvonne Cook, President of the Highmark Foundation. “Gaining insight to the health struggles female veterans face and better understanding their current needs, helps us to reimagine a new system of care.”

This month, Adagio Health is proud to partner with Highmark Foundation in recognition of Veteran’s Day. We honor all who have served and seek to recognize and lift-up women veterans in our region. If you are a woman veteran in need of care, please call 1-800-215-7494 to make an appointment regardless of discharge status, length of service, or documentation. You can also visit to learn more about Adagio Health’s women veterans initiative. Read the full press release here.