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Veterans' Benefits

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The Veterans' Administration medical benefits package provides the following health care services to all enrolled veterans.

Preventive Care Services

  • Immunizations
  • Physical Examinations
  • Health Care Assessments
  • Screening Tests
  • Health Education Programs

Ambulatory (Outpatient) Diagnostic and Treatment Services

  • Emergency outpatient care in VA facilities
  • Medical
  • Surgical (including reconstructive/plastic surgery as a result of disease or trauma)
  • Chiropractic Care
  • Mental Health
  • Bereavement Counseling
  • Substance Abuse

Hospital (Inpatient) Diagnostic and Treatment

  • Emergency inpatient care in VA facilities
  • Medical
  • Surgical (including reconstructive/plastic surgery as a result of disease or trauma)
  • Mental Health
  • Substance Abuse

Medications and Supplies

  • Prescription medications
  • Over-the counter medications
  • Medical and surgical supplies

Will VA pay for medications written by a non-VA physician?

Generally only veterans with special eligibility, such as veterans receiving Aid and Attendance or Housebound benefits, or who are approved by a VA health care facility for Fee Basis are eligible to receive medications at VA expense.

Special and Limited Benefits

There also are special and limited benefits for some veterans. To review these benefits and determine whether you qualify to receive them, visit the Veterans Administration website on special and limited benefits.

General Exclusions

The VA cannot provide the following services or benefits:

  • Abortions and abortion counseling
  • Cosmetic surgery except where determined by VA to be medically necessary for reconstructive or psychiatric care
  • Drugs, biologicals, and medical devices not approved by the FDA unless the treating medical facility is conducting formal clinical trials under an Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) or an Investigational New Drug (IND) application, or the drugs, biologicals, or medical devices are prescribed under a compassionate use exemption.
  • Gender alteration
  • Health club or spa membership
  • In vitro fertilization
  • Services not ordered and provided by licensed/accredited professional staff
  • Special private duty nursing
  • Hospital and outpatient care for a veteran who is either a patient or inmate in an institution of another government agency if that agency has a duty to give the care or services.

Additionally, VA cannot provide certain benefits to veterans and dependents identified as fugitive felons.

Health Care Eligibility and Enrollment

Eligibility for VA health care is dependent upon a number of variables, which may influence the final determination of the services for which you qualify. These factors include the nature of a veteran's discharge from military service (e.g., honorable, other than honorable, dishonorable), length of service, VA adjudicated disabilities (commonly referred to as service-connected disabilities), income level, and available VA resources among others.

Generally, you must be enrolled in VA health care system to receive benefits offered in the Medical Benefits Package. To apply for VA health care benefits, including enrollment you must fill out an application. We use the application to determine:

  • Whether you have qualifying service as a veteran

  • What your veteran status is so that you can be placed into one of the priority groups

Enrollment Restriction

Effective January 17, 2003, VA suspended NEW enrollment of veterans assigned to Priority Group 8 (VA's lowest priority group consisting of higher income veterans). If you are a veteran enrolling for the first time on or after January 17, 2003, and your income exceeds the current year income threshold, you are not eligible for enrollment at this time. Veterans enrolled in Priority Group 8 on or before January 16, 2003, will remain enrolled and continue to be eligible for the full-range of VA health care benefits

To determine if you may qualify for Veterans medical benefits, visit the VA Website.


Source: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Last Review:01/02/2012