NJ Veteran Journal
Summer 2005 Edition
VA Reaches Out to Newest Combat Veterans
From the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is expanding its efforts to reach veterans of combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan to ensure they are aware of benefits they have earned.

The VA is sending a letter to more than 150,000 veterans of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom who have recently separated from the military to thank them for their service and to remind them of their eligibility for VA health care and other benefits.

The letter includes brochures and links to the VA website at www.va.gov that contain more details
about VA benefits and information for applying online.

As Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom veterans continue to leave the active-duty military, VA expects to mail about 10,000 letters each month.

The VA also regularly mails information packets to all service members separating from the military to remind them of eligibility for basic VA benefits, such as guaranteed home loans and education benefits. Additionally, there are provisions in these programs for reservists and National Guard members.

The additional outreach to those recently deployed to combat theaters alerts them to special eligibility that increases their access to health care for two years after separation from the military for illnesses and injuries that may be the result of military service. For those medical problems, VA waives copayments for inpatient and outpatient care.

VA focuses special attention on those with service-related disabilities. The department’s goal is a
seamless transition from military to VA services, with claims for financial benefits receiving expedited processing. For the seriously wounded, VA has counselors working at the bedsides of patients in military hospitals with the largest numbers of casualties to begin benefit applications before they leave the military.

In addition, VA social service personnel work at these military facilities to plan health care coordination as service members move from military to VA care. This helps ensure a smooth transition to a VA hospital or clinic near the veteran’s intended residence for continuity of medical care.

In partnership with state and local government benefits counselors and veterans service organization representatives, VA annually briefs about 200,000 service members around the world before discharge to help prepare them for civilian transition and VA benefits. It operates benefits offices at 133 military installations to help service members with conditions arising
during service prepare to begin receiving VA compensation promptly after discharge.


Improvements in VGLI Information
From the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that veterans would now be able to access
their Veterans’ Group Life Insurance (VGLI) accounts at any time of the day or night from any computer or telephone.

Using a secure Web site, the VGLI Online Account Access system allows veterans to obtain basic
information on their account through the insurance Web site at www.insurance.va.gov.

Veterans can check on their current amount of coverage, premium rate and billing method, as well as change their billing address. Future improvements include allowing veterans to change their method and frequency of payment.

The veteran enters financial information directly into the website including financial obligations, net additional income needed by survivors and current assets. By subtracting assets from total financial obligations and net income needed, the calculator arrives at a recommended amount of life insurance.

Veterans can also access their account information through a new VGLI interactive voice response system that allows veterans to obtain account information through the telephone.

Veterans can call the VA at 1-800-419-1473 any time, day or night, by using their telephone keypad and can hear recorded information on their accounts. They an also request certain changes to their VGLI accounts, such as billing frequency and payment method, as well as order certain forms.

Table of Contents
Abel New DCVA
Governor’s Letter
Vets Homes Update
NJ Medals Honor Veterans
Mental Health Hotline
Army Program For Vets
VA Reaches out to New Vets
Vets News You Can Use
One Shots
POW Expanded Benefits
VSO Listing
Front Page / General Info

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