Health Benefits for Veterans: Short-Term and Long-Term Options

The Veteran’s Administration has established quiet a few short-term and long term health benefits for veterans.

So if you are a veteran, and need any kind of geriatric or extended care, and you haven’t enrolled in the Veteran’s Administration health care system – then you should.

There will always come a time when you may need to access these outpatient or long term care benefits. Either at home or at a community based health care facility.

It stands to reason that when people get sick, they prefer to remain at home, or at least in their own community, and this year, the programs through the VA Medical Centers will be offering 65,000 or more veterans this opportunity.

Primary Care Home-Based

There are 76 VA Medical Centers with the ability to offer primary care at home. This is for veterans that have a terminal illness, and are remaining at home. Their care is provided and coordinated by an interdisciplinary treatment team.

Contract Home Health Care

This is what you would call fee basis home care. Professional nursing home care that is purchased through a provider in the private sector. Every VA Medical Center has this.

Homemaker and Home Health Aide

H/HHA is for service connected veterans who need to be taken care of in a nursing home. Both private and public community agencies provide this service through a case management system, that is handled by the staff at the VA.

Adult Day Health Care

This program is for day time hours and a group setting only. It helps with health maintenance and rehabilitation services.

Respite Care

Although this program is only for 30 days out of the year, it was designed to help temporarily relieve some of the burden caused by caring for a veteran at home, who is either disabled or chronically ill.

Domiciliary Care

If the veteran is recovering from psychosocial, psychiatric or medical problems, then they only need a short-term rehabilitation program, that is offered in a residential rehab program like domiciliary care.

Geriatric Management and Evaluation

An interdisciplinary team of health professionals from the VA assesses and treat older veterans that have geriatric problems or many functional medical or psychosocial problems.

Hospice Home Care

When a person is in the last stages of a terminal illness, they will need support and comfort from someone other than their family members. The object is to provide care for pain, suffering and control of symptoms. This service is given by volunteers or an interdisciplinary health care team.

Care In A Nursing Home

The nursing home programs through the VA are either located in the hospital, and are supported by clinical specialties, or they are contract nursing homes located in the community. However, the veteran must be eligible for nursing home care. Here is a list of the criteria veterans must meet:

  • Must have disability combination ratings of 70% or more.
  • Must have a disability connected to their service, and truly needs a nursing home.
  • Must have a disability that is related to his service, and has a rating of 70% or more.
  • Must be totally disabled, unemployed, and have a service related disability with a 60% rating.
  • Must meets the asset and income criteria, and is regarded as non-service or non-compensable, zero percent, service connected, and need the services of a nursing home.

Other veterans would be admitted to a nursing home on a case-by-case, available space, condition.
Priority would be placed on those with service related conditions that are post-acute rehabilitation, hospice care, geriatric evaluation and management, respite and spinal cord injuries.

Please contact the Veteran’s Administration about the short-term and long-term health benefits for veterans at 1-877-222-8387 for health care, and 1-800-827-1000 for benefits, or go on line at