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VA Caregiver Program

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CAREGIVER SUPPORT PROGRAM INTERIM RULE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROGRAM OF COMPREHENSIVE ASSISTANCE FOR FAMILY CAREGIVERS

Family Caregivers provide crucial support in caring for our Nation’s Veterans by allowing them to stay in the homes and communities they defended, surrounded by the loved ones they fought for. Caregivers in a home environment can enhance the health and well-being of Veterans under VA care. Additional VA services are now available to those Family Caregivers who share VA’s daily charge to serve those “who have borne the battle.” VA will accept applications from seriously injured post 9-11 Veterans and their Family Caregivers for the new Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, starting May 9th, 2011. For those eligible to enroll in the program, training will begin in early June 2011. Many Veterans and caregivers, members of congress, Veteran Service Organizations and community partners helped make this legislation possible. We at VA appreciate all the support for the Family Caregiver as the regulation that will define this program is implemented.

 

IMPORTANT ELIGIBILITY NEWS

Veterans eligible for this program are those who sustained a serious injury including traumatic brain injury, psychological trauma or other mental disorder incurred or aggravated in the line of duty, on or after Sept. 11, 2001.

 

Veterans eligible for this program must also be in need of personal care services because of an inability to perform one or more activities of daily living and/or need supervision or protection based on symptoms or residuals of neurological impairment or injury.

 

To be eligible for the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, Veterans must first be enrolled for VA health services, if not enrolled previously.

 

Starting May 9, 2011, Veterans may download a copy of the Caregiver program application (VA CG 10-10) at www.caregiver.va.gov. The application enables Veterans to designate one primary Family Caregiver and up to two secondary Family Caregivers if desired. Caregiver Support Coordinators are available at every VA medical center to assist Veterans and their Family Caregivers with the application process. Additional application assistance can be found by via phone at 1-877-222 VETS (8387).

 

If the Veteran is not currently enrolled, both the VA Form 10-10 EZ for VA health services and the application for the Caregiver Program (VA Form 10-10 CG) will need to be completed.

 

The application must be completed and signed by both the Veteran or their legal representative and the primary Family Caregiver. The application can be hand carried to a local VA Medical Center (VAMC) for walk-in processing, or if expedited processing is preferred, it may be mailed to:

 

Family Caregivers Program

Health Eligibility Center

2957 Clairmont Road NE

Suite 200

Atlanta, GA 30329-1647

 

Within three business days of receipt of the initial application, the Caregiver Support Coordinator at the Veteran’s preferred VA Medical Center will contact the Veteran and primary Family Caregiver to arrange for the Family Caregiver to complete the application and schedule required training.

 

A clinical team from VA will coordinate arrangements with the Veteran to complete a clinical eligibility assessment. This will include evaluating what assistance the Veteran needs with activities of daily living such as eating, bathing, grooming, and/or need for supervision or protection.

 

Training is completed by the primary Family Caregiver once it is determined the Veteran meets clinical eligibility criteria. Training can be completed in one of three ways: Attending the Family Caregiver classroom training conducted at a local VA medical center or community location; completing the training online on a security protected website; or by self-study using a workbook and DVD that will be mailed to the Family Caregiver.

 

Once the Family Caregiver training is completed, a VA clinician will visit the Veteran’s home. The purpose of this visit is to make sure that the Family Caregiver and Veteran have everything they need to be safe and successful in the home setting.

 

After the home visit is completed, the Family Caregiver will begin receiving a monthly stipend based on the Veteran’s level need and required assistance. The Family Caregiver may also receive health insurance benefits through CHAMPVA if the Family Caregiver does not have existing health insurance. The stipend and health insurance benefits will be retroactive to the date of initial application.

 

There are over two dozen services specific to Caregivers of Veterans of all eras that are currently being offered by VA. Contact your local VAMC Caregiver Support Coordinator or the Caregiver Support Line at 1-855-260-3274 for information on these and other caregiver resources and services.

 

This page was last updated May 5, 2011