W. G. (Bill) Hefner VA Medical Center - Salisbury, NC
Visual Impairment Services Team VIST - Salisbury VAMC
What is VIST?
The Hefner VA Medical Center VIST Program helps legally blind and severely visually impaired Veterans and their families adjust to severe vision loss. The Salisbury "Catchment Area" covers Salisbury VA Medical Center, Hickory, Charlotte, and Winston-Salem Clinics.
The most important service offered to legally blind veterans is called the Annual VIST Review. This is a yearly examination which assesses the legally blind veteran's adjustment, vision, hearing, and health. After this exam, eligible veterans will remain in contact with the VIST coordinator as needed, and be referred for rehabilitation, follow-up healthcare services, community services, counseling, and other available benefits.
Who May Benefit from VIST Services?
If a Veteran requires the assistance of another person or exhibits any of the following functional deficits, a referral to VIST may be indicated:
- Difficulty reading mail, newspaper, medication labels or other standard size print with regular eyeglasses or contact lenses.
- Difficulty performing activities of daily living, such as managing their medications, grooming, cooking, using the phone, telling time, etc., as a result of their visual impairment.
- Diabetic Veterans who have difficulty seeing to measure their insulin or seeing to check their blood sugar with regular eyeglasses or contact lenses.
- Difficulty ambulating safely and independently as a result of blindness or visual impairment.
Referral to VIST
Any Veteran who is legally blind or severely visually impaired, even while wearing conventional glasses, and who is eligible for VA health care may participate in the VIST program. If you are unsure if you are eligible for VA health care benefits, please contact the VIST Coordinator to assist in determining eligibility.
- VA Blind Rehabilitation Training Programs including the Salisbury Advanced Low Vision Clinic
- Computer training programs which are adapted for use by blind or visually impaired persons
- Low Vision Examination by a Low Vision Optometrist at local facility
- Library of Congress Talking Book Program
- Issuance of Blind or Low Vision Aids/prosthetics
Veterans are often issued prosthetic/blind aids which may include optical devices such as hand magnifiers, electronic magnifiers such as CCTV, large print or talking computer system, canes, talking watches, audible prescription readers, adapted recreational devices or other assistive devices based on assessments by blind rehabilitation professionals.
Contact InformationVeterans in the Kernersville and Salisbury area please contact:
VIST Coordinator David Hedrick, 336-515 ext. 21483
Veterans in the Charlotte area please contact:
VIST Coordinator Dana Draa, 704-3291300 ext. 31832
- Advanced Low Vision Clinic
- Blinded Veterans Association
- NC Division of Services for the Blind
- American Foundation for the Blind
- Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Optometry Service
- VA Blind Rehabilitation Service
- National Federation of the Blind
- Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Office of Research and Development
- 336-515-5000 Ext. 21483
- 704-329-1300 Ext. 31832
Hours of Operation
- Mon-Fri 8:00am-4:30pm