Emily Rice Published

Record Number Of Veterans Enrolled In Health Insurance

phone in front of a computer screen
Smartphone with website of United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in front of seal.
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The Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it has enrolled more than 2,000 West Virginian veterans in VA health care over the past 365 days, a 23 percent increase from previous years.

A press release from the VA credits the increased enrollment to the expansions in the PACT Act, which allowed the VA to expand health care and benefits to millions of veterans.

As of March 5, 2024 all veterans who were exposed to toxins and other hazards while serving in the military and meet certain requirements became eligible to enroll directly in VA health care.

“We want every eligible veteran to enroll in VA health care for one simple reason: Veterans who come to VA are proven to have better health outcomes – and pay less – than veterans who don’t,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. “That’s why we’ve spent the past year meeting veterans where they are – hosting thousands of events, sending millions of texts, advertising on every corner, and much more – to get them to come to VA. This aggressive outreach campaign has led more Veterans to enroll in VA care than during any year in at least a decade, and we’re not slowing down now.” 

Nationally, rates of enrollment increased by 30 percent. This is the most yearly enrollees in at least five years at the VA and a nearly 50 percent increase over pandemic-level enrollment in 2020.

Appalachia Health News is a project of West Virginia Public Broadcasting with support from Marshall Health.