We all know that nursing home care in this country can bankrupt individuals. That’s why the federal government stepped in with programs like Medicare and Medicaid that are designed to help seniors get the care they need.
However, there is one program meant specifically for veterans that is administered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or VA. Any veteran who served in the US armed forces on active duty and received any discharge from service other than a dishonorable discharge is eligible to receive VA Health Care benefits which provide coverage for doctor and specialist visits, mental health care services, and in-patient hospital stays – and, most importantly in terms of this article, long- and short-term stays in nursing homes and skilled nursing care centers.
The VA must provide skilled nursing care center benefits to both veterans who suffer from service-connected disabilities and those who suffer from afflictions that are not service-related. The level of benefits may vary, so it’s important to speak with an elder law attorney who is experienced with navigating the ins-and-outs of VA benefits to determine what type of skilled nursing home care is available through the VA depending on your individual situation.
Fortunately, there are a large variety of care centers that work with veterans who receive VA health benefits, such as Community Living Centers, Contract Nursing Homes, and State Veteran Homes. These different skilled care centers can provide different types and levels of care, all of which are determined by the veteran’s eligibility requirements. For instance, Community Living Centers require veterans to be both medically and psychiatrically stable and are located within VA Medical Centers, while Contract Nursing Homes are for veterans who are discharged from VA hospitals. Both have time limits attached, which are often dependent on the resources available in the care centers. State Veterans Homes are run by the state and receive funding through the VA – these care centers provide the most options since they have nursing home, hospital, and adult day care services.
If you would like to learn more about the VA medical benefits available to your loved ones who are eligible veterans, or if you need help determining your elderly loved one’s VA Health Care eligibility status, please contact our Ohio elder law office at 877-653-3450 to schedule a complimentary initial consultation.