Health Insurance Options for Veterans and Military Personnel

Veterans (VA) Benefits

Veterans of the United States armed forces may be eligible for a broad range of benefits and services provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

To find out if you qualify for VA health care benefits, contact the Department of Veterans Affairs at 877-222-VETS (222-8387) or visit www.va.gov. Once you apply for enrollment, your eligibility will be verified.

Additional information on Veterans health care benefits is available at www.va.gov or by calling 1-877-222-VETS (222-8387).

You can apply for VA health care by visiting any VA health care facility or VA regional benefits office, calling 877-222-VETS (222-8387) or visiting www.va.gov/healthbenefits/enroll. The Department of Veterans Affairs also has a website to inform Veterans about what the Affordable Care Act means for them and their families at: www.va.gov/aca

TRICARE

TRICARE is a regionally managed health care program for active duty service members, National Guard and Reserve members, retirees, their families, and survivors.

TRICARE combines the health care resources of the uniformed services with civilian health care networks. There are different health plan options available to TRICARE-eligible individuals, and benefits and out-of-pocket costs for health care services may vary under each of the program options.

To view a list of all available plans and eligibility criteria, please visit www.tricare.mil.

Specific covered services for people with diabetes are described at: http://tricare.mil/CoveredServices/SeeWhatsCovered.aspx.

Agent Orange

Vietnam veterans with type 2 diabetes who were presumed to be exposed to Agent Orange or other herbicides are eligible for disability compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

In 2000, the VA added type 2 diabetes to the list of "presumptive diseases associated with herbicide exposure." That action followed a report from the National Academy of Sciences that found “limited/suggestive” evidence of an association between the chemicals used in herbicides during the Vietnam War, such as Agent Orange, and type 2 diabetes.

For more information on disability compensation, please call 1-800-827-1000.

Vietnam veterans who are interested in participating in the VA’s Agent Orange Registry Program, which includes a health examination, should call 1-800-749-8387 for more information or contact their local VA Environmental Health Coordinator. More information on these VA benefits is available at www.va.gov.

  • Last Reviewed: October 10, 2013
  • Last Edited: December 6, 2013

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