The PACT Act: 2024 Healthcare Updates

The PACT Act: 2024 Healthcare Updates

The PACT Act was signed into law in August of 2022, creating a long list of new presumptive service connections for certain veterans. Just over a year later, the VA reported that more than one million veterans had applied for benefits under the PACT Act. What many didn’t realize was that the rollout of new presumptive service connections was only the beginning. 

Another provision in the PACT Act opened up VA healthcare services to veterans who suffered toxic exposures during their military service. That provision was meant to be rolled out across several years. However, last month the VA announced that the timeline had been dramatically accelerated. As of March 5, 2024, all veterans who were exposed to toxins during military service or training can sign up for VA healthcare services. 

Who is Eligible For The Pact Act?

Eligibility under the PACT Act is quite broad. Any veteran who was exposed to burn pits, toxic chemicals, radiation, nerve agents, firefighting foam, or other toxins during their military service can sign up for VA healthcare. That includes veterans who were never deployed and were exposed to toxins while on active duty in the United States or during training. 

Veterans who served in certain conflicts are presumed to have been exposed and are eligible for healthcare services. These include the Vietnam War, the Gulf War, Iraq, Afghanistan, or any other combat zone after September 11, 2001.

Signing Up for VA Healthcare Benefits

Importantly, the PACT Act allows eligible veterans to register for healthcare services without applying for VA disability benefits. You can apply online for healthcare. 

Of course, many veterans who were exposed to toxic substances during their military service are also eligible for VA disability benefits. This new provision can benefit you even if you have filed a claim for or are planning to file a claim for VA disability benefits. If you’re eligible for healthcare under the new provisions and sign up directly, you won’t have to wait for your VA disability claim to be approved to start receiving health benefits. If your claim is denied and you have to go through the lengthy appeal process, you’ll still have healthcare during that time.

Get the VA Disability Benefits You Deserve

If you’re eligible for VA healthcare, take advantage of the opportunity to sign up without having to go through the disability claims process. But, don’t leave benefits on the table. If you believe you may be eligible for additional benefits, Veterans Help Group is here for you. To learn more about how our experienced advocates can help with your VA disability claim or appeal, call 855-855-8992 or fill out our contact form right now.

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