The Department of Veterans Affairs has launched a new hotline – (855) VA-WOMEN – to receive and respond to questions from veterans, their families and caregivers about the many VA services and resources available to women veterans. The service began accepting calls on March 27, 2013.
The hotline is staffed by knowledgeable VA employees who can provide information about benefits including health care services for women. Callers can be linked to information on claims, education or health care appointments as well as information about VA cemeteries and memorial benefits. Staff can answer urgent questions and provide referrals to homeless and mental health services as well as provide Vet Center information.
Women make up nearly 15 percent of today’s active duty military and 18 percent of National Guard and reserve forces. The population of women veterans using VA benefits, including health care, is growing rapidly. Since 2000, the number of women using VA health care more than doubled, from nearly 160,000 in 2000 to more than 354,000 in 2012. Based on the upward trend of women in all branches of service, the number of women veterans – and female VA users – will keep climbing.
Women veterans are entitled to apply for the same benefits as their male counterparts, which include health care and pharmacy benefits, as well as education benefits, disability compensation, home loans, employment assistance and more.
The hotline joins numerous other VA hotlines that provide critical information and assistance to veterans, such as those for veterans in crisis and in danger of becoming homeless. Veterans can also receive information and apply for benefits online www.eBenefits.va.gov and manage their health care here. MyHealtheVet.va.gov