06 May A Brief on VA Healthcare- From Eligibility to Benefits
Available under various programs, VA healthcare is one of the additional benefits provided to Veterans, active military members, national guards and family members. These plans are provided by the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and offer some remarkable assistance to its applicants.
VA HEALTHCARE ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
A military member is eligible for healthcare benefits if they are able to meet the following requirements-
- They were enlisted after September 7, 1980, or entered active duty after October 16, 1981, and
- They have served 24 continuous months on duty.
In case an applicant has not served 24 continuous months, either of the following must be true-
- They were discharged because of a service-related injury/disability, OR
- They were enlisted before September 7, 1980, OR
- They were discharged for a hardship or an early out.
To apply for benefits as a member of the reserves, an applicant must have served a minimum of days on-duty. Members who entered on-duty only for training purposes are not eligible for VA healthcare benefits.
After enrollment, an applicant will be placed in priority groups. There are eight priority groups established by the department.
Groups 1-3 include military members with disability ratings, former POWs, members who have received purple heart or medal of honor.
Groups 4-8 include members suffering from general medical conditions, combat status, environmental exposures and income.
The easiest way to apply for VA healthcare benefits is to fill and submit VA Form 10-10EZ online.
An applicant can also apply in person at a regional medical facility by calling at 1-877-222-VETS (8387).
BENEFITS OF VA HEALTHCARE
All applicants enrolled with healthcare benefits are open to avail benefits like preventive, primary and specialty care, diagnostic, inpatient and outpatient care services. Veterans are also open to avail benefits like dental care, mental health programs and availability of prescribed drugs.
Veterans can also access the MyHealtheVet website to order prescription refills, schedule appointments, send secure messages to your VA health care team, view lab and test results and view, download, and print your medical records.
The department also provides VA healthcare benefits for mental health conditions like depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, PTSD, military sexual trauma and other issues.