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The Affordable Care Act, VA, and You

 

Family Members

VA wants all Veterans and their families to receive health care that improves their health and well being.

Family members are a key part of Veterans good health and support network. VA health care coverage is available for family members of certain Veterans who are permanently and totally disabled or died serving our country and in some cases, Veterans with children who have Spina Bifida.

Family Members and the Marketplace

The Affordable Care Act, also known as the health care law, was created to expand access to affordable health care coverage to all Americans, lower costs, and improve quality and care coordination. Under the health care law, people will have:

  • health coverage that meets a minimum standard (called “minimum essential coverage”) by January 1, 2014;
  • qualify for an exemption; or
  • pay a fee when filing their taxes if they have affordable options but remain uninsured.

The Marketplace is a new way to shop for and purchase private health insurance (for example, health coverage other than VA health care programs) that fits your budget and meets your needs.

Your family members who are not enrolled in a VA health care program and who do not meet the health care law coverage standards should use the Marketplace to get coverage. They may get lower costs on monthly premiums or out-of-pocket costs. They could be eligible for free or low-cost coverage through Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

They can submit an application for health care coverage through the Marketplace, and learn the amount of assistance they are eligible for. For more information, visit www.healthcare.gov.

If your family members have access to affordable coverage but remain uninsured starting in 2014, you may have to make payment when filing your taxes. This payment will either be a flat fee or a percentage of your taxable household income, depending on which amount is higher. You do not have to pay a fee if your family members have coverage that meets a minimum standard (called “minimum essential coverage”).

Exemptions from the payment will be granted under certain circumstances. For more information on these exemptions, visit www.healthcare.gov.

CHAMPVA Beneficiary? What You Should Know

The Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA), is a health care benefits program that provides coverage to the spouse or widow(er) and to the dependent children of a qualifying Veteran or Servicemember who:

  • is rated permanently and totally disabled due to a service-connected disability, or
  • was rated permanently and totally disabled due to a service-connected condition at the time of death, or
  • died of a service-connected disability, or
  • died on active duty, and
  • the dependents are not otherwise eligible for Department of Defense TRICARE benefits.

In addition, Primary caregivers of OEF/OIF Veterans may be eligible to receive CHAMPVA coverage if they are not already entitled to care or services under a health plan contract, including Medicare, Medicaid or workers compensation.

Under CHAMPVA, VA shares the cost of covered health care services and supplies with eligible beneficiaries.

Coverage under VA’s CHAMPVA program means you already satisfy the requirement to have health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act, also known as ACA or health care reform. You don’t need to do anything more to avoid an individual fee from the IRS. Beneficiaries continue to enjoy health care coverage without having to pay enrollment fees, monthly premiums or deductibles.

For more information, visit our CHAMPVA website or call 1-800-733-VETS (8387).

Spina Bifida beneficiary? What You Should Know

The Spina Bifida Health Care Program is a health benefit program administered by VA for Vietnam and certain Korean Veterans' birth children who have been diagnosed with spina bifida (except spina bifida occulta). The program provides reimbursement for medical services and supplies.

Coverage under VA’s spina bifida program means the beneficiary has satisfied the requirement to have health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act also known as ACA or health care reform. Nothing more needs to be done to avoid an individual IRS fee. Beneficiaries continue to enjoy health care coverage without having to pay enrollment fees, monthly premiums or deductibles.

For more information, visit our Spina Bifida website or call 1-888-820-1756.

For More Information

1-877-222-VETS (8387)
8 am to 10 pm ET Mon-Fri
11 am to 3 pm ET Sat

Find out if you're eligible: Health Benefits Explorer
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