Health Care Programs - William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital
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William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital


Health Care Programs

Educational Programming - Short List

  • Complementary and Alternative Therapies (CAT) Program: Mind/Body Practices for Health and Wellness
    • Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Training
    • Tai Chi and Qigong Fundamentals Training
    • Tai Chi Training for Women
    • Warrior Yoga
    • Yoga for Women
    • Mindful Eating for Women
    • Mindful Man
    • Relaxation Training
    • Every Day Meditation Training
  • Congenstive Heart Failure (CHF) Classes
  • Diabetes
    • Diabetes self management program
    • Diabetes self management follow up class
  • Hepatitis C group classes
  • Mission Connect
  • MOVE program
    • MOVE overview class
    • MOVE group classes
    • Keep MOVEin' Support Group
    • Women's MOVE group classes
  • New Patient Orientation
  • Nutrition Classes
    • Heart Healthy Eating Part 1
    • Heart Healthy Eating Part 2
    • Pre-diabetes Class
    • Nutrition Diabetes Class
    • Nutrition Follow-Up Diabetes Class
  • OEF/OIF Support Group
  • Orthopedics Joint Replacement Class
  • Pain Management
    • Pain Group
    • Pain Coping Skills Class
    • Pain Pals Support Group
  • Spritual Discussions Group
  • Tobacco Cessation

Educational Programming - Detailed Descriptions

Complementary and Alternative Therapies (CAT) Program: Mind/Body Practices for Health and Wellness (Free!)

The outpatient Complementary and Alternative Therapies Program provides training in natural stress relief and health improvement practices for Veterans and their families. Health care professionals and volunteers, certified in these practices, help Veterans to enhance personal and professional skills. Classes offer education and practice in stress management techniques that build professional skills (focus, attention, and memory) as well as health (improved sleep, decreased stress, and increased well-being). Participants learn simple, effective, and powerful techniques to feel energized and focused, and to reduce stress and/or pain. Veterans who have participated in these programs have benefited from these skills and practices.

Recent research suggests that certain mind body practices may be helpful for different medical conditions including: sleep disturbances, balance problems, low bone density, arthritis, hypertension, heart disease, Parkinson's disease, chronic pain, fibromyalgia, breast cancer, addictions, obesity, fatigue, reduced strength, depression, anxiety, and PTSD. Please work with your provider to help you identify which classes and practices may be the most beneficial to reduce stress and/or pain and to improve health, well-being, and life satisfaction.   

  • Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Training (PDF Poster 211 KB) - "Mindfulness is paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally, which nurtures greater awareness, focus, clarity, and acceptance of present moment reality." (Kabat-Zinn)
    In this nine week series of weekly classes with daily homework, you will learn how to apply mindfulness practices to daily life. At the end, you will have a new capacity to respond to life's many challenges and improve life satisfaction on a daily basis.
  • Tai Chi and Qigong Fundamentals Training (PDF Poster 191 KB) - Learn to move safely, efficiently, effectively, and powerfully. Learn to let go of tension and pain in body and mind. Learn how to apply these principles to daily activities at work, at home and in recreation. Based on tai chi principles, this 6 week series will teach you the basics of focusing the mind, active relaxation, centering, postural alignment, body mechanics, and balance. This is a powerful weight bearing exercise, and is safe for stress, pain, and weight management.  
  • Tai Chi Training for Women (PDF Poster 189 KB)
  • Warrior Yoga (PDF Poster 322 KB) - Balance for the Battle Mind and Body- Learn how to connect the mind with the body in this movement class where we will be practicing simple poses and a powerful mindful breathing technique for increased flexibility, strength, and focus. Based on yoga principles. 
  • Mindful Eating for Women (PDF Poster 147 KB) - In this complex, fast-paced world, we may have lost our ability to pay attention, to nurture ourselves and to enjoy the experience of eating. In this eight-week course for women, we will explore how the practice of Mindfulness can help us learn to live more comfortably in our own bodies, make wise choices, and appreciate all aspects of food preparation and consumption.
  • Mindful Man (PDF Poster 135 KB) - In this complex, fast-paced world, the expectations placed on men, both by ourselves and by others, can sometimes feel like a heavy burden. In this eight-week course for men, we will explore how the practice of Mindfulness can help us learn to live more comfortably in our own skin and to move through the world with more ease.
  • Relaxation Training - "Stopping, calming and resting are preconditions for healing." (Hanh) Tap into the natural tendency of the body to heal. Learn how to relax the body and the mind through a variety of powerful techniques.
  • Every Day Meditation Training - Most of us know that physical exercise keeps our bodies fit and healthy. But how can we become mentally and emotionally fit? In this ongoing drop-in series you will learn that mindfulness meditation practice, in various forms and as applied to daily life, trains us to be fully present to ourselves and to life, which helps us respond wisely and appropriately to life's many challenges and to experience the deep life satisfaction that dwells within each of us.

Please see class schedules at listing on the Event Calendar. For more information or to register please call 256-1901 ext 11052.

Call Erica Sundby to register for classes at 608-256-1901 ext 11052.
Call Kristi Rietz for more information at 608-256-1901 ext 11339.

Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) Classes

An interdisciplinary class taught by nurse practitioners and a dietitian. Learn how to help manage your heart failure. Offered on Thursdays at noon - 1 pm.


  • Diabetes Self Management Program - an  interdisciplinary program taught by CDE’s (RN, dietitian, and physical therapist) which focuses on giving an overview of the diagnosis of diabetes, self monitoring skills, nutrition and carbohydrate counting, and physical activity.  Classes are offered on Mondays and runs from 9:00 am-1:15 pm with a lunch break.
  • Diabetes Self Management Follow Up Class - a class for patients who have previously attended the db self management class; this class content is directed by patient needs.  Offered the third Monday of each month from 12:15- 2:15pm or the Second Thursday of each month from 10:00am- 12:00 pm (Noon).

Hepatitis C Group Classes

This is a group class offered the fourth Thursday of each  month at 9:30 am till 11:30 am.  There is discussion about the different types of Hepatitis, how they are acquired, and treatment for hepatitis C.

Mission Connect

This is a support and networking group for veterans who are dealing with unemployment and financial difficulties. The first Thursday of each month the support group focuses on adjusting to unemployment- stages of grief and survival skills.


MOVE Program MOVE! is a national weight management program designed by the VA National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention (NCP), a part of the Office of Patient Care Services, to help veterans lose weight, keep it off and improve their health.

  • MOVE Overview class held daily at 11 am Mon-Thurs.:  gives an introduction to the health benefits that are possible with weight loss and options available for participation. Typically 30 minutes.
  • MOVE group classes:  interdisciplinary classes totaling 8 sessions that focus on providing information for healthy eating and exercise patterns to promote weight management. 
  • Keep MOVEin’ Support Group:   ongoing support group which meets once monthly  and is facilitated by one of the MOVE team members. Provides ongoing monitoring of weight, and opportunities for sharing.  90 minutes.
  • Women's MOVE Group: Interdisciplinary classes totaling 8 sessions that start with 90 minutes of Tai Chi and follow with 60 minutes of support focusing on providing weight management information for healthy eating, healthy behaviors, exercise and medication

New Patient Orientation

This group class is currently offered daily Mon-Thurs. at 10 am to new participants in the VA healthcare system to give an introduction to our facility and the VA system. Typically 30 minutes.

Nutrition Classes

  • Heart Healthy Eating Part 1:   This class offers an introduction to heart healthy eating with an emphasis on behavior modifications which can lower cholesterol and help achieve a more desirable.  Individuals are given a copy of their lipid profile along with current desired goals for lipids from the  NCEP and discussion about risk factors for cardiac disease and desirable lifestyle modifications. Topics covered include: definitions of types of fats, general recommendations for calories for weight loss/maintenance, recommendations for daily saturated fat intake, saturated fat content of common foods, reading labels and dining out.  45--60 min.
  • Heart Healthy Eating Part 2:  This class builds on the beginning concepts offered in Heart Healthy Eating Part 1, and offers more comprehensive recommendations for the motivated learner. Current research trends summarized by the Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes Diet are discussed such as: Increasing monounsaturated fats, omega 3 fats, whole grains and soluble fiber, DASH diet recommendations, soy protein, flax, and plant sterols.  60 minutes
  • Pre-diabetes Class:  This class is for people with impaired fasting glucose or for those who are interested in preventing Type 2 Diabetes. 45--60 minutes.
     Objectives for Class Participants:
    • Define diabetes and pre-diabetes
    • List the risk factors for diabetes
    • Describe regular physical activity and weight loss as effective strategies to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes.
  • Nutrition Diabetes Class: Taught by a dietitian with certification in diabetes education, this class presents the nutrition and meal planning recommendations of the American Diabetes Association for people living with diabetes.  The class includes education on carbohydrate counting using servings and/or grams of carbohydrate.  Participants are taught to recognize carbohydrate serving portions of common foods.  Participants are also taught to read labels for total carbohydrate content in grams for various serving sizes.  60 minutes.
  • Nutrition F/U Diabetes Class: This is a class, facilitated by certified diabetes educator dietitian, for patients who have previously attended group classes and have had individual counseling in managing their diabetes. Class content is determined by patient interest using the U.S. Diabetes Nutrition Conversation Map. Challenges and successes in diabetes self-management are discussed.  45--60 minutes.

OEF/OIF Support Group

This is a weekly support group for anyone in a significant relationship with a returning veteran,  or service member that will be returning.  The purpose of the group is to help family/support members  voice their challenges in supporting their returning loved one. Currently  meeting on Tuesdays from 12:00-1:30pm.

Orthopedics Joing Class

This is a class to help patients understand the advantages and disadvantages of joint replacement surgery. It is offered on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month from 9:00-10:00 am. A consult from a provider is necessary for placement in the class.

Pain Management:

  • Pain Group:  This class meets  every other Friday and focuses on educating participants about dealing with chronic pain and the role of an interdisciplinary pain clinic.  2 hour class.
  • Pain Coping Skills Class: This is a six week class offered on an ongoing basis  which discussed strategies for coping with chronic pain.  It is offered on Wednesday afternoons from 1: 30 to 3:00 pm.
  • Pain Pals Support Group:  This is a veteran facilitated peer support group. It is offered weekly on Wednesdays at noon.

Spiritual Discussions Group

This is an ecumenical (non denominational) support group led by a chaplain which meets weekly on Thursdays from 2:00-3:00 pm.