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Emergency medical care for Veterans: eligibility and VA payments
During a medical emergency, Veterans should immediately seek care at the nearest medical facility. A medical emergency is an injury, illness or symptom so severe that without immediate treatment, you believe your life or health is in danger. If you believe your life or health is in danger, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency department (ED) right away.
Veterans do not need to check with VA before calling for an ambulance or going to an ED. During a medical emergency, VA encourages all Veterans to seek immediate medical attention without delay. A claim for emergency care will never be denied based solely on VA not receiving notification prior to seeking care.
In general, VA can pay for emergency medical care at a local ER for a Veteran’s service-connected condition, or if the care is related to a Veteran’s service-connected condition. VA can also pay for emergency medical care for a Veteran’s non-service connected condition.
However, there are specific requirements in federal law and regulation that detail the conditions for eligibility for both service-connected and non-service connected conditions.
About the author: VA’s Office of Community Care (OCC) operates two main service lines, Delivery Operations and Revenue Operations, that support medical care delivery and services for Veterans and their families. OCC is also responsible for functions that support these service lines such as administration, planning, oversight and stakeholder relations.
In this four-part series on VA's Emergency Preparedness Simulation efforts, you'll see how simulation and emergency preparedness professionals build collective strategies that mitigate, prepare, respond, and recover from tragedies impacting Veterans and their communities.