DAV Charitable Service Trust Helps Update VA Lab
Mon May 19,12:38 PM ET

To: City Desk

Contact: Dave Autry of the Disabled American Veterans, 202-554-3501

WASHINGTON, May 19 /U.S. Newswire/ -- The DAV Charitable Service Trust has awarded a $100,000 grant to help the VA's National Prosthetics Gait Lab in Long Beach, Calif., upgrade its 20-year old equipment, which has been repeatedly delayed by VA funding shortages.

"The DAV Charitable Service Trust was created to help programs that provide valuable services to veterans," said Chairman Richard E. Marbes. "In this case, inadequate VA funding was reducing the capabilities of this important facility which helps nearly one million amputees and veterans with spinal cord injuries to become more ambulatory."

The National Prosthetics Gait Lab requested the funds to upgrade its existing motion capture and analysis system. The lab was developed nearly 20 years ago to provide treatment and measure the results of rehabilitation plans for amputees and spinal cord injures as part of the effort to return veterans to the most active lifestyle possible in the shortest time. The motion analysis system evaluates orthotic, prosthetic, and spinal cord injury patients for devices to enhance their mobility.

Without the equipment and software upgrade, the lab's efficiency could be dramatically reduced.

"New equipment and software are much easier to use and deliver more accurate results in less time than the equipment currently used by the lab," Mr. Marbes said. "In addition, the new software allows for new measurements to enhance the treatment of veterans."

The need to replace the equipment is acute since the manufacturer of the old system no longer supports the hardware, and replacement parts are not available. "Inadequate federal funding for VA health care has prevented the system upgrade, and made future upgrade unlikely," Mr. Marbes said. "The DAV Charitable Service Trust was delighted to pitch in to ensure that our veterans obtain the finest health care available."

"The DAV is very grateful that so many Americans donate to the Charitable Service Trust, which allows us to support such vital programs as this for our nation's disabled veterans," said Mr. Marbes. "The work accomplished by the organizations that receive DAV Charitable Service Trust grants provides many valuable and important initiatives that help the men and women who have given so much to our nation."

Funds to support the Charitable Service Trust result from the generosity of donors through workplace campaigns like the Combined Federal Campaign, United Way, and other workplace giving programs across the country.

The million-member Disabled American Veterans, a non-profit organization founded in 1920 and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1932, represents this nation's disabled veterans. It is dedicated to a single purpose: building better lives for our nation's disabled veterans and their families. For more information, visit the organization's Web site http://www.dav.org.



/В© 2003 U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/

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