What is the Veterans Care Program?
Veterans Care Program is a program designed to provide comprehensive, affordable healthcare to Illinois’ uninsured veterans. The Veterans Care Program covers those veterans who have the least access to reliable healthcare. These are the veterans who cannot currently access Veterans Health Administration’s benefits and who meet specific income requirements.
Why is Veterans Care necessary?
According to a 2004 Harvard study, 11.9% of military veterans are uninsured. For veterans who do not have a service-connected disability, the VHA will only provide care if a veteran earns less than the Geographic Mean Income Threshold, which measures both income and assets. Furthermore, if a veteran does not have access to employer-subsidized health insurance, he or she my find it difficult to afford the $4,000 premium that an average individual health insurance policy costs here in Illinois. Veterans Care will offer an affordable option for eligible Illinois veterans who are looking for comprehensive healthcare coverage.
Who is eligible?
We set the eligibility requirements for the pilot program to include those veterans who have the least access to reliable healthcare. To be eligible, veterans must meet all of the following requirements:
- Ages of 19 through 64
- Have had no health insurance for at least six months. However, you may still be eligible if your only insurance coverage in the last six months:
- Ended due to the loss of your employment or your spouse’s employment
- Ended due to the loss of FamilyCare or other state medical assistance
- Ended due to the life-time benefit limit in your coverage
- Is through a spouse’s plan that you are unable to access
- Is purchased through COBRA, or
- Is through post active-duty TriCare coverage
- Not eligible for VA healthcare
- Not eligible for other state healthcare programs such as Family Care
- Not been dishonorably discharged
- Have served 180 consecutive days active duty after training
- Veterans with incomes in the approved income range (varies by county and household size)
Where will veterans apply?
Veterans can apply through the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs office or call 877-483-8779 if calling from within Illinois; TTY 877-204-1012.
Will there be premiums?
Participants in the Veterans Care Program will have to pay monthly premiums of $40 or $70 based on their income. You will be ineligible for three months if you are cancelled due to not paying your premiums.
What services are covered?
- Hospital care
- Doctor services
- Prescription drugs
- Care at clinics
- Physical, occupational, and speech therapy
- Laboratory tests and X-rays
- Alcohol and substance abuse services
- Medical equipment, supplies, and appliances
- Emergency medical transportation
- Hospice care
- Home healthcare
- Renal dialysis
- Family planning
- Optometric care
- Podiatric care
- Limited Dental care
- Chiropractic care
- Audiology services
- Mental health services
Do I have to pay a co-pay?
There will also be co-payment charges for medical services. Co-payments will be:
- Doctor visits – $15
- Generic prescription drugs – $6
- Name brand prescription drugs – $14
- Hospital emergency room visits – $50
- Hospital admissions – $150
- Hospital or Ambulatory Out-patient treatment – 10% of covered services
- Dental visits – $15
How can I pay for premium costs under Veterans Care?
Your monthly premium can be paid several ways:
- Credit or Debit Card
- Money Order
- Cashiers Check
- Personal Check