Health care just got better for our Veterans. They’ve served our country well and they deserve the best care possible. The MISSION ACT of 2018 was designed to deliver a better system.
VA MISSION ACT 101
Care for Veterans has been around in some form since the founding of our nation. The Veterans Administration as we know it was established in 1930. Since that time, it’s been in an ongoing state of evolution.
On June 6, 2018 the VA MISSION Act was signed into law. The act was designed to improve the health care system of services for Veterans. Some of the points addressed include prescription drug procedures, care outside the traditional VA network, and other modernizations.
Since its inception, the MISSION Act was to be implemented in both short and long-term fixes. One of those updates has just been released.
The New Improved VA MISSION Act
On June 6, 2019, exactly one year after the MISSION Act was signed into law, changes were implemented that further expand care to Veterans.
According to VA Secretary Robert Wilkie, “The changes not only improve our ability to provide the health care Veterans need, but also when and where they need it.” For many Veterans and their families, the changes come as a relief.
The Changes in a Nutshell
The changes in the MISSION ACT are designed to offer more options for Veterans. Now, more ways exist for Vets to access and receive care than before. Some forms of care not previously available are now a possibility. Even Vets in remote areas will have an easier time getting care.
Here’s a short list of some key points:
• The Veterans Choice Program is replaced by the Veterans Community Care Program.
• Program processes have been improved and eligibility requirements have been streamlined.
• Telehealth and urgent care services have been expanded.
• VA health care benefits can be used together with Indian Health Service of Tribal Health plans.
• An urgent care benefit is now available for non-emergency, non-life-threatening conditions.
• In some situations, approved non-VA “community care providers” can provide access to care you might otherwise not be able to get.
• In most cases, you must first get approval before accessing community care providers. A copayment may apply, as it would with a VA facility.
A Few Examples
Situations vary from one person to another, but here are two examples of what this might mean for you as a Veteran:
Non-VA Providers: If a certain type of health service isn’t provided by VA—you may be able to go to a non-VA provider using your VA coverage. Maternity care is one possible example. Certain criteria must be met, but this is great news for many vets.
Urgent Care Coverage: Veterans may use Urgent Care providers for non-emergent conditions like ear pain, sprains, bruises sore throat, flu-like symptoms and several other health issues.
Applying for VA Health Care Benefits
As with any government-issued benefit, the VA has specific requirements that must be met in order to receive health care. Some of it gets more complicated than we can discuss in this article. What we can easily say is that the basics relate to the years you served, where you served and the circumstances of your discharge.
How Quinn Estate & Elder Law Helps Veterans
The attorneys at Quinn Estate & Elder Law are accredited through the VA to assist you in prosecuting your claim for benefits like these. We help you qualify and apply for these benefits.
Service Connected Disability Benefits: If you are a veteran that suffers from a disability that is a result of an incident, injury or event that occurred during your military service, then we can assist you in getting the benefits which you have earned by serving your country.
Non-Service Connected Disability Pension Benefits: This is a VA benefit available to both qualifying veterans and their surviving spouses. This program is designed to supplement the income of elderly and/or disabled veterans who gave up career opportunities to serve their country during a time of war.
Aid and Attendance: This benefit is available to veterans, their spouses, widows or widowers. This benefit is the highest level of pension available and is designed to offset to help offset the cost of nursing homes, assisted living communities, and personal care homes.
For a free consultation to discuss a game plan, call Quinn Estate & Elder Law at 636-428-3344.