July 15, 2024

World War II Veterans Now Eligible for No-Cost Health Care

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All World War II veterans are now eligible for no-cost health care, medical services and nursing home care from the Department of Veterans Affairs, the agency announced Friday in advance of Veterans Day.

These veterans, who number fewer than 120,000, according to data published Thursday by the Pew Research Center, will no longer have to make copayments or pay enrollment fees or monthly premiums, regardless of their disability ratings or priority group in the VA health system.

VA officials announced several new initiatives to improve health care and expanded several programs to draw in more veterans after a record-breaking year of providing health care and benefits to veterans -- largely the result of the PACT Act, which added hundreds of thousands of new beneficiaries to VA rolls.

The VA was required by the 2022 Cleland-Dole Act to provide the no-cost care to those who served between Dec. 7, 1941, and Dec. 31, 1946.

"These members of the Greatest Generation answered the call to serve when our nation -- and the world -- needed them most. Now, it's our job to serve them in every way that we can," VA Under Secretary for Health Dr. Shereef Elnahal said in a statement Friday.

The department plans to reach out by phone and mail to encourage WWII veterans who aren't currently enrolled in VA care to apply, officials said. According to the VA, those veterans will be able to keep any private providers, Medicare and most other insurance they have if they enroll.

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