On October 1, 2022, VA family caregiver benefits expand to all Veterans in need of care. This is exceptional news, as the VA required certain criteria which has made it difficult for many veterans and their caregivers to qualify for assistance. Let’s take a look at how this will positively effect thousands of veterans and their families.
What are VA Caregiver benefits?
The VA offers a Caregiver Support Program (CSP) called The Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers (PCAFC). This program supports and compensates full-time caregivers providing in-home assistance to veterans who are severely wounded or need 24/7 care.
Veterans can designate one Primary Family Caregiver; or up to two Secondary Family Caregivers as backup support when the Primary is not able to provide care or needs a break. According to the Program:
If you are the primary caregiver, you may receive:
– A monthly stipend (paid directly to you as the caregiver.)
– Access to health care insurance through Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA), if you do not already have health insurance.
– Mental health counseling.
– Certain beneficiary travel benefits when traveling with the Veteran to appointments. For specific details, please contact your CSP Team.
– At least 30 days of respite care per year, for the Veteran. Respite is short term relief for someone else to care for the Veteran while you take a break.
If you are the secondary caregiver, you may receive:
– Mental health counseling as it relates to the care of the Veteran.
– Certain beneficiary travel benefits when traveling with the Veteran to appointments. For specific details, please contact your local CSP Team.
Be sure to check www.caregiver.va.gov for updates or subscribe to receive email updates and information about VA Caregiver Support Program services.
Who qualifies for VA Caregiver benefits?
Only veterans who served before May 1975 or after September 2001 were eligible for VA caregiver benefits. Now it is open to veterans of all eras! For a veteran to be eligible, the VA Caregiver Support Program states that:
[A veteran may have] sustained or aggravated a serious injury (or illness) in the line of duty in the active military, naval or air service during any service era. Among other applicable eligibility criteria, an eligible Veteran must:
- Have a single or combined service-connected disability rating by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) of 70% or more, and
- Be in need of personal care services (requiring in-person personal care services) for a minimum of six continuous months based on any one of the following:
– An inability to perform an activity of daily living.
– A need for supervision or protection based on symptoms or residuals of neurological or other impairment or injury; or
– A need for regular or extensive instruction or supervision without which the ability of the Veteran to function in daily life, would be seriously impaired.
Do you meet the above and are in need of VA Caregiver benefits? Apply now!
Follow the link and look for the heading “How do I apply for this program?” https://www.caregiver.va.gov/support/support_benefits.asp
Use In-Home Care Professionals for Caregiver Support & Relief
Even though the VA offers amazing assistance in providing family caregivers with the tools they need to be a successful caregiver, sometimes a professional needs to step in. This could be due to the family caregiver’s own schedule and needs, health ailments, age, or they may just need a break! Therefore, a great consideration is to reach out to a personal care agency like Heroes Caregiving to help provide support and relief. Heroes Caregiving is a contracted provider with the VA and currently provides personal care services in Henderson, Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, and Boulder City, Nevada. Consider using your respite care allowance with us. If allowed and if needed, you may consider using your financial stipend to cover services if the respite care allowance is not enough. Heroes Caregiving was founded by veterans and understands the importance of taking care of our country’s veterans and their families.
Check out our services here: https://heroescaregiving.org/caregiver-services/