VA Health Care, the Affordable Care Act and You!

Ed. note: This is cross-posted from the Department of Veteran's Affairs VAntage Point blog. See the original post here.

On Friday, March 14, in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services and our community partners, VA is hosting a Google+ Hangout and information session to provide uninsured Veterans, their family members, caregivers and advocates information about health insurance options available under the Affordable Care Act.

Join us at noon ET on the Google+ event page – or on the VA website to learn more about what the Affordable Care Act means to Veterans and family members.

VHA’s Lynne Harbin, deputy chief business officer, member services chief business office; HHS’s Catherine Oakar, director of public health policy in the office of health reform; VA subject matter experts and community partners will be available to provide information and resources to uninsured Veterans, their family members, caregivers and advocates about the Affordable Care Act and how they may enroll in quality health care.

The Affordable Care Act expands access to coverage, and helps to improve health care quality and care coordination. The health care law does not change VA health benefits or Veterans’ out-of-pocket costs.

As a Veteran enrolled in VA health care, you don’t need to take any additional steps to ensure you meet the health care law coverage standards and eligible Veterans not enrolled can do so at any time.

If you are enrolled in any of VA’s programs below, you have coverage under the standards of the health care law:

  • Veteran’s health care program
  • Civilian Health and Medical program (CHAMPVA)
  • Spina bifida health care program

You don’t need to do anything more. The health care law does not change your VA benefits or out-of-pocket costs. You can continue to enjoy VA health care, which means you have:

  • Medical care rated among the best in the U.S.
  • Immediate benefits of health care coverage. Veterans may apply for VA health care enrollment at any time.
  • No enrollment fee, monthly premiums, or deductibles. Most Veterans have no out-of-pocket costs. Some Veterans may have to pay small copayments for health care or prescription drugs.
  • More than 1,700 places available to get your care. This means your coverage can go with you if you travel or move.
  • Met the new requirement to have health care coverage that meets the minimum standard.

If your family members or caregivers are not covered by a VA health care program, they can use the Health Insurance Marketplace to get coverage. They may get lower costs on monthly premiums or out-of-pocket costs, and they could be eligible for free or low-cost coverage through Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).  Open enrollment for health insurance coverage through the Healthcare Marketplace ends March 31, so it’s important to ensure now that your family members are covered.

The goal of the VA health care system is to achieve excellence in patient care and customer satisfaction. VA’s medical mission is singular — to serve Veterans by providing the highest quality health care available anywhere in the world. America’s Veterans deserve nothing less. To go along with that, we want to ensure our Veterans’ families are also taken care of. So please, if you don’t already have insurance, check out www.HealthCare.govand get covered today! We hope you can join us on Friday, March 14 at noon ET for the Google+ Hangout!

For more information on the Affordable Care Act, visit http://www.va.gov/aca.

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