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Friday, May 27, 2011

Caregivers of Veterans did you know you have benefits waiting for you?

So after talking to a friend whose husband was in the Army and is out now, she brought to my attention the Caregivers Act. After reading this, it is important that you know what is out here for you to help you deal with the daily issues that may arise. So basically what it is; is that in May of last year, President Obama signed the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act. What this means for you as caregivers is, that you have some benefits for helping take care of your veteran.  
 
So there are new benefits and services for eligible Veterans who were disabled in the line of duty since Sept. 11, 2001. The VA will also start providing enhanced benefits and services to caregivers of Veterans of all eras who are already enrolled in VA care, including: Access to VA’s toll-free Caregiver Support Line:  1-855-260-3274,Expanded education and training on how to care for Veterans at home, a host of support services such as counseling and support groups and referral services; and they also have a website for caregivers. Some of the new benefits of the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act are restricted by law to the caregivers of the most seriously ill and injured Post 9/11 Veterans.  Those additional benefits include: a monthly stipend, health care coverage, Travel expenses, including lodging and per diem while accompanying Veterans undergoing care, Respite care; and counseling.

I read that some of these benefits are available now; many of the other benefits will require some regulations on how to give out those benefits on who qualifies to utilize them, how, when, where and why.  They are still working on the kinks of the policies and procedures so in the meanwhile you can check out www.caregiver.va.gov to see where the regulations stand and when they are going to be finalized.

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