Additional VA Health Benefits Programs
Dependents and Survivors
CHAMPVA is a health care benefits program for:
- Dependents of Veterans who have been rated by VA as having a service-connected total and permanent disability
- Survivors of Veterans who died from VA-rated service-connected condition(s) or who, at the time of death, were rated permanently and totally disabled from a VA-rated service- connected condition(s)
- Survivors of persons who died in the line of duty, not due to misconduct, and who are not otherwise entitled to benefits under DoD’s TRICARE program
Children of Women Vietnam Veterans Health Care Benefits
Children of Women Vietnam Veterans is a program designed for women Vietnam Veterans’ birth children who are determined by the Veteran Benefits Administration to have one or more covered birth defects.
Children of Women Vietnam Veterans
Spina Bifida Health Care Benefits
Spina Bifida Health Care Benefits is a program designed for Vietnam and certain Korea Veterans’ birth children who are diagnosed with spina bifida (e xcluding spina bifida occulta) and who are in receipt of a Veteran Benefits Administration award for spina bifida benefits.
Spina Bifida Health Care
|Spina Bifida online|
A medical emergency is generally defined as a condition of such a nature that a sensible person would reasonably expect that a delay in seeking immediate medical attention would be hazardous to life or health.
You may receive emergency care at a community health care facility, possibly at VA expense, when a VA facility (or other federal health care facility with which VA has an agreement) cannot furnish efficient care due to your distance from the facility, VA cannot provide timely care, or when VA is unable to furnish the needed emergency services.
VA Payment for Emergency Care of your Service-connected Conditions without Prior Authorization
Since payment may be limited to the point when your condition is stable enough for you to be transferred to a VA facility, you, a family member or a friend need to contact the closest VA medical facility within 72 hours from the time of admission. The emergency is deemed to have ended when a VA provider has determined that, based on sound medical judgment, you could be transferred from the community facility to a VA medical center.
VA may pay for your community emergency care.
|If you are:||Then:|
VA may pay for your:
VA Payment for Emergency Care of your NonService-connected conditions without prior authorization
VA may pay for emergency care provided in a community facility for treatment of a nonservice-connected condition only if all of the following conditions are met:
|If you are:||Then:|
VA Dental Insurance Program
VA would like all Veterans to have access to good dental care; however, it is limited to providing dental benefits to those Veterans who meet certain eligibility criteria. To help Veterans who are not eligible for VA dental benefits or need more comprehensive dental care, VA offers enrolled Veterans and beneficiaries of CHAMPVA the opportunity to purchase dental insurance at a reduced cost through its VA Dental Insurance Program (VADIP).
VADIP has been extended for an additional five years, until Dec. 31, 2021, by the VA Dental Insurance Reauthorization Act of 2016. Delta Dental of California and MetLife offer private dental insurance plans for enrolled Veterans and beneficiaries of CHAMPVA for VADIP. Enrollment in the program opened Nov. 15, 2017.
VADIP provides eligible individuals the opportunity to purchase discounted dental insurance coverage, including diagnostic services, preventive services, endodontic and other restorative services, surgical services and emergency services. Individuals who enroll in one of the dental insurance plans will pay the entire premium in addition to the full cost of any copayments. Enrollment is voluntary and does not affect eligibility for VA outpatient dental services and treatment.
The plans are available to eligible individuals in the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Individuals who were enrolled in VADIP during the pilot period (January 1, 2013 – January 31, 2017) must re-enroll in one of the new plans offered by Delta Dental or MetLife. While the insurance providers will remain the same, plan options, fees and other factors may have changed from those offered during the pilot.
For more information about VADIP, call 1-877-222-VETS (8387) Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. ET or visit www.va.gov/healthbenefits/vadip. You may review each insurer for specific information regarding their registration, rates and services: Delta Dental at feds.deltadentalins.com/vadip/ or call 1-855-370-3303; MetLife at www.metlife.com/VADIP or call 1-888-310-1681.
Veteran Identification Card
Former President Obama signed into law the “Veterans Identification Card Act of 2015.” This Act allows eligible Veterans to be issued an identification card directly from VA. The Veteran Identification Card (VIC) should not be confused with VA’s legacy Veteran Identification Card (VIC), which was issued by VA medical facilities for health services, 2004 until 2013, before being replaced by the current Veterans Health Identification Card (VHIC). This VIC cannot be used in VA medical facility kiosks to sign in for appointments or update your information. Veterans not eligible for a VHIC may consider applying for this card. For more information and to apply, visit www.Vets.gov/.
Mental Health Services
Veterans Crisis Line
The Veterans Crisis Line is a toll-free, confidential resource that connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring VA responders.
Veterans who are in crisis or having thoughts of suicide and those who know a Veteran in crisis can call the Veterans Crisis Line for confidential support 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. They can call 800-273-8255 and press 1, chat online at www.vets.gov/, or text to 838255, even if they are not registered with VA or enrolled in VA health care.
The professionals at the Veterans Crisis Line are specially trained and experienced in helping Veterans of all ages and circumstances — from Veterans coping with mental health issues that were never addressed to Veterans struggling with relationships or the transition back to civilian life.
Military Sexual Trauma
Military Sexual Trauma (MST) is the term VA uses to refer to sexual assault or repeated, threatening sexual harassment occurring during a Veteran’s military service. VA has expanded eligibility for Veterans in need of mental health care due to sexual assault or sexual harassment to Reservists and National Guard members participating in weekend drill. Veterans can learn more about VA’s MST-related services online at www.mentalhealth.va.gov/msthome.asp.
In-/outpatient and Residential Services Available
VA provides free outpatient, inpatient and residential services to help Veterans recover from MST. MST services are available to both male and female Veterans without a limit to the duration of care. MST-related outpatient services are available at every VA health care facility. VA also has programs that offer specialized MST treatment in a residential or inpatient setting. These programs are for those who need more intense treatment and support.
Receive Free MST-Related Care
To receive free treatment related to MST, Veterans do not need a VA service-connected disability. Veterans do not need to have reported the incident when it happened or have other documentation that it occurred. There are no length-of-service requirements to receive care, and some Veterans may be able to receive free MST-related care even if they are not eligible for other VA care.
For more information, contact the MST coordinator at your nearest VA Medical Center or visit www.mentalhealth.va.gov/msthome.asp. A list of VA and Vet Center facilities can be found online at www.va.gov/directory/.
Readjustment Counseling Services
VA provides free readjustment counseling encompassing a wide range of social services offered to eligible Veterans, Servicemembers, and their families in the effort to make a successful transition from military to civilian life. Vet Center staff are available toll free and around the clock at 877-WAR-VETS (927-8387).
For additional information regarding readjustment counseling services, visit www.vetcenter.va.gov/Vet_Center_Services.asp.
VA has founded a National Call Center for Homeless Veterans so that Veterans who are homeless or at risk for homelessness have free, 24/7 access to trained counselors. The hotline is intended to assist homeless Veterans and their families, VA medical facilities, federal, state and local partners, community agencies, service providers and others in the community. To be connected with the Homeless Call Center, call toll free 1-877-4AID VET (877-424-3838).
Learn about VA homeless programs and mental health services in your area that can help you. For more information, visit www.va.gov/homeless.
The Caregivers Benefit Program provides certain medical, travel, training and financial benefits to caregivers of certain Veterans and Servicemembers who were seriously injured during their military service on or after September 11, 2001. Eligible primary family caregivers can receive a stipend, training, mental health services, travel and lodging reimbursement and access to health insurance if they are not already under a health care plan.
For more information, contact your local VA medical facility and speak with a caregiver support coordinator, visit www.caregiver.va.govor call toll-free at 1-855-260-3274.
Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Benefits
From the 1950s through the 1980s, people living or working at the U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., may have been exposed to drinking water contaminated with industrial solvents, benzene and other chemicals.
Veterans who served on active duty at Camp Lejeune for at least 30 days between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987, may be eligible for cost-free medical care through VA for the following health conditions:
- Bladder cancer
- Breast cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Female infertility
- Hepatic steatosis
- Kidney cancer
- Lung cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Myelodysplastic syndromes
- Neurobehavioral effects
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Rena toxicity
Veterans who are experiencing other health conditions that they think may be related to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune are encouraged to contact their primary care provider and to file a claim. Veterans must still meet the criteria of a Veteran – minimum service time, character of discharge and serving in the active duty military, naval or sea service.
Camp Lejeune Veterans:
- Do not need to have one of the 15 health conditions to be eligible to receive VA health care, nor do they need a service-connected disability to be eligible as a Camp Lejeune Veteran
- Already enrolled in VA health care should contact their local VA health care facility to receive care under the law
- Who would otherwise not be eligible due to income limits are now eligible just from being at Camp Lejeune during that period of time
- Are eligible now, and should call 1-877-222-Vets (8387) for assistance
- Will eventually be placed in Priority Group 6 (unless eligible for a higher PG), but will be in the system as a PG 7 or PG 8 until system changes are implemented
- Do not pay copayments or third party billing for any of the 15 Camp Lejeune illnesses
Enrolled Veterans can receive any care provided in the medical benefits package but may pay a copayment or have third party billing for care not related to the 15 Camp Lejeune covered illnesses.
The Camp Lejeune Family Member Program (CLFMP) is designed for the family members who were stationed at Camp Lejeune between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987, who are determined by the VA to have one or more of the 15 Camp Lejeune-covered illnesses.
VA will not provide care in VA facilities for the family members but will be the last payer of claims for care related to the 15 illnesses in the law. VA will reimburse family members for care for the 15 illnesses back to March 26, 2013.
Family members must complete an application for the program at https://www.clfamilymembers.fsc.va.gov and submit receipts for reimbursement. They are encouraged to keep receipts for out-of-pocket medical expenses of the 15 Camp Lejeune covered illnesses to submit with their claims.
For more information on eligibility, family members may contact the Department of Veterans Affairs, Financial Service Center, P.O. Box 149200, Austin, TX 78714-9200, call the toll-free CLFMP customer service line at 1-866-372-1144 or visit https://www.clfamilymembers.fsc.va.gov/.
For more information about Camp Lejeune historical water contamination and to sign up for updates, visit the Military Exposure section on the VHA Office of Public Health website at www.publichealth.va.gov/exposures.The U.S. Marine Corps encourages all those who lived or worked at Camp Lejeune before 1987 to register to receive notifications regarding Camp Lejeune Historic Drinking Water at https://clnr.hqi.usmc.mil/clwater. To sign up for the Camp Lejeune Water newsletter, visit www.marines.mil/clwater or call 1-877-261-9782.
Free Transportation to VA Appointments
VA recognizes Veterans who are visually impaired, elderly or immobilized due to disease or disability, and particularly those living in remote and rural areas who face challenges traveling to and from their VA health care facilities and authorized VA Community Care appointments to receive the care they have earned.
To provide these Veterans with the most convenient and timely access to transportation services, VA is establishing a network of community transportation service providers that could include Veteran Service Organizations (VSOs); community and commercial transportation providers; federal, state and local government transportation services and non-profit organizations, such as United We Ride.
Veterans who are eligible for VA health care benefits and have a VA-authorized appointment are eligible for transportation through the Veteran Transportation Service program based on the availability capabilities of transportation resources and local facility ridership guidelines. Veterans needing transportation for care can contact the VTS Mobility Manager/ VTS Office at their local VAMC for more information.
Medically Related Travel Benefits
The Beneficiary Travel (BT) program reimburses eligible Veterans for costs incurred while traveling to and from VA health care facilities. The BT program may also provide pre-approved transportation solutions and arrange special mode transportation (SMT) at the request of VA. Veterans may be eligible for common carrier transportation (such as bus, taxi, airline or train) under certain conditions.
Veterans may qualify for mileage reimbursement or special mode transportation in relation to travel for VA health care if they:
- Have a service-connected disability rating of 30% or more; or
- Are traveling for treatment of a service-connected condition; or
- Receive a VA pension; or
- Are traveling for a scheduled compensation or pension examination; or
- Have income below the maximum annual VA pension rate
Special mode travel (such as a wheelchair van or ambulance) is provided to eligible Veterans based on a clinical determination of need (authorization is not required for emergencies if a delay would endanger their life or health).
Mileage reimbursement of 41.5 cents per mile may be claimed to offset the expense of travel when the Veteran drove to a qualified appointment. Reimbursement for the actual cost of common carrier travel (bus, train, taxi, etc.) is available in some circumstances.
No More Standing In Line
VA has implemented online form VA Form 10-3542, (Veteran/Beneficiary Claim for Reimbursement of Travel Expenses), as a simple way to apply for mileage reimbursement without standing in line. Contact your local VAMC Beneficiary Travel office for details.
Travel benefits are subject to a deductible. Exceptions to the deductible requirement include:
- Travel for a compensation and pension examination
- Travel by an ambulance or a specially equipped van
- When annual income does not exceed certain limits. For more information on travel benefits, visit www.va.gov/healthbenefits/vtp/beneficiary_travel.asp.
Health Benefits For Service-Connected Conditions Are Never Out Of Reach
VA’s Foreign Medical Program (FMP) provides health care payment/reimbursement for U.S. Veterans with VA-rated service-connected conditions who live or travel abroad.
|All countries (excluding the Philippines)|
Foreign Medical Program
|To contact FMP online||Web site|
|Medical Services in the Philippines|
VA Outpatient Clinic – Manila
Notice of Privacy Practices
Veterans who are enrolled for VA health care benefits have various privacy rights under federal law and regulations, including the right to a Notice of Privacy Practices. To review the VA Notice of Privacy Practices, visit www.oprm.va.gov/privacy/resources_privacy.aspxor write to the VHA Privacy Office (19F2), 810 Vermont Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20420.
Services and Tools Available Online
VA's Health Benefits website
VA’s health benefits website, located at www.va.gov/healthbenefits, contains a wide range of information related to the medical benefits, information and resources available to its enrollees, such as:
- Online application for enrollment
- Newly-released information regarding updates or changes to VA health care benefits and services
- Medical benefits based on eligibility and priority group
- Eligibility and benefits determination calculator
- Copay information
- Contact Information
- Online chat features
- Access to downloadable resources (fact sheets, brochures, etc.)
- Resource library
- Links to other sites of interest, such as MyHealtheVet, eBenefits, Pay.gov and the Affordable Care Act
Office of Public Health
The VA Office of Public Health brings a public health approach to promoting and protecting the health of Veterans and VA staff. Visit www.publichealth.va.gov to learn about important health-related subjects, including:
- Health & Wellness: topics that cover staying healthy with vaccinations and infection- control habits, employee wellness programs, and violence prevention
- Diseases & Conditions: find out more about certain medical conditions that may affect Veterans
- VA conducted health related studies and data: the Office of Public Health and research organizations conduct studies on the health issues affecting Veterans to better serve their needs
- Military Exposures: learn about exposure-related health concerns
VA offers touch-screen devices at VAMCs and CBOCs for Veterans to have convenient control and access to their health information. Activities include:
- Check in for current appointments and view future appointments
- Manage, review and update personal and insurance information
- Apply for beneficiary travel mileage reimbursement
- Request medical records
- Manage account balance
- Review and reconcile medication and allergy information
More capabilities will be available soon. Visit www.va.gov/healthbenefits/vps to learn more.
Your Personal VA Health Information At Your Finger Tips
VA emphasizes patient-centered innovations including MyHealtheVet (www.myhealth.va.gov), an e-portal suite of tools for Veterans and caregivers that provides:
- Secure, web-based Personal Health Record (PHR) patient access to personal health information from the VA Electronic Health Record
- The ability to download and share personal health information using the VA Blue Button
- Online services, such as e-prescription refills, trusted health education resources
- Secure messaging between patients and their VA health care teams
If you are a VA patient and have an upgraded account (obtained by completing the one-time authentication process), you can:
- participate in secure messaging with your participating VA health care team members
- Request prescription refills
- View key portions of your DoD military service information
- Get or view your VA:
- Wellness reminders
- Appointments and lab results
- Allergies and adverse reactions
- Key portions of your electronic record
- Continuity of Care Documents (CCD)
- Participate in future features as they become available
Visit MyHealtheVet at www.myhealth.va.gov, register and learn more about authentication PLUS the many features and tools available to you 24/7 anywhere you have Internet access. If you have any questions about MyHealtheVet, contact the MyHealtheVet Coordinator at your local VA facility.
Special Care Access Network - Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (SCAN-ECHO)
Through VA’s SCAN-ECHO initiative, Veterans and their primary care team use video conferencing technology to seek expertise from specialists located 100 to 500 miles away. VA offers SCAN ECHO to more than 40 rural sites of care with more than 100 participating rural primary care physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants.
VA is leveraging mobile health technology to provide Veterans with additional opportunities to become active partners in their health care. VA Mobile releases new apps for Veterans regularly. Check https://mobile.va.gov/ often for new information about available apps.
eBenefits is a one-stop shop for benefits-related information for Veterans, Wounded Warriors, Servicemembers, their families and their caretakers. eBenefits allows Veterans to apply for VA benefits, such as health care, education and pension. Other services include:
- Disability compensation
- Add or remove dependent
- Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program
MANAGE BENEFITS –
- Compensation claims status
- Direct deposit
- VA letters and Certificate of Eligibility for Home Loan
MANAGE HEALTH –
- VA medical records and prescription refills
- VA appointment scheduling
- Order hearing aid batteries and prosthetic socks
For more information, visit: www.ebenefits.va.gov.
Veterans Canteen Service
Veterans Canteen Service (VCS) offers you the opportunity to shop and dine at any of its store/café operations located in VA hospitals, in many CBOCs across the country and in some Veterans Benefits Offices. The VCS Patriot Store Direct 1-800 Special Order Program offers savings on top, name brand retail items, such as computers, tires, tools, large appliances, flowers, jewelery, toys and much more. Browse vendors and monthly features at www.vacanteen.va.govand look for the Special Order page on the left side navigation or call 1-800-664-8258 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET to place an order.
For more information, visit www.vacanteen.va.gov.