Country Veterans Council urges women to use VA healthcare hotline
The Hill Country Veterans Council is urging women in this area who served in our nation's armed forces to use a new hotline provided for them by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
The 1-855-VA-WOMEN hotline is described by VA headquarters in Washington as a source of information for
veterans, their families and caregivers on services and resources available to women.
Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki is quoted as saying, "The hotline will allow us to field questions and provide critical information about the latest enhancements in VA services."
The VA describes the hotline as staffed by "VA employees who can provide information about benefits including healthcare services for women," adding that, "Callers can be linked to information on claims, education or healthcare appointments, as well as information about VA cemeteries and memorial benefits."
Referrals to homeless and mental health services, as well as information on Veterans Centers, also are available, the VA says.
The agency notes that women constitute nearly 15 percent of active duty military and 18 percent of National Guard and reserve forces, and says that the numbers of women veterans using VA healthcare and other benefits is growing rapidly, reaching 354,000 in 2012.
The VA emphasizes that women veterans are entitled to apply for the same benefits as their male counterparts, including healthcare, pharmacy services, education, disability compensation, home loans and employment assistance.
The agency says that further information is available on the Internet at eBenefits.va.gov and MyHealtheVet.va.gov.
Joseph Benham for the Hill Country Veterans Council