The Durango VA Contracted Community Based Outpatient Clinic has a highly knowledgeable staff available to serve all primary health care needs and has the capacity for more veterans to receive free or low cost primary health care.
The VA provides a comprehensive medical benefits package of health services that is available to all enrolled veterans. The benefits include preventive-care services, hospital services, prescription drugs, home health care services, long-term care benefits and nursing home benefits.
While many veterans qualify for enrollment and cost-free VA health care services based on a compensable service connected condition or other qualifying factors, certain veterans will be asked to complete a financial assessment at the time of enrollment to determine their eligibility for cost-free medical care and medications. The assessment is based on the veteran’s gross household income from the previous calendar year.
If you are one of the many veterans reaching retirement age and you are now on Medicare, or a veteran without health insurance, or if you are just out of the service and are having a difficult time finding a primary care provider, then VA health care may be an option for you. VA health care is available to all veterans discharged under honorable conditions. There is no time limit to apply and combat service is not a requirement. If you served honorably in the Armed Forces, no matter when and where, you can apply for VA health care benefits.
With VAHC being considered creditable coverage under the Affordable Care Act, now is a good time to apply for enrollment in this program. Enrollment in the VA health care system provides veterans with a safety net against being fined or penalized under the Affordable Care Act for not having any form of health care insurance. This is a great thing for veterans who cannot afford to purchase health care coverage.
Veterans currently enrolled in the VA health care system must be seen at least once every 12 months to maintain enrollment. If you are not seen by the VA once a year, you will be required to re-enroll in the VA health care system before the VA will provide any health care services. This is important to remember because for those who cannot afford to purchase additional health insurance, loss of your VAHC benefits means the loss of your health care safety net.
Richard Schleeter is the veterans service officer for the La Plata County Veterans Service Office. He can be reached at 759-0117 or firstname.lastname@example.org.