Emily Rice Published

VA Reminds Combat Veterans Of PACT Act Deadline Saturday

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As part of the PACT Act, veterans who deployed to a combat zone, have never enrolled in VA health care, and left active duty between Sept. 11, 2001 and Oct. 1, 2013 are eligible for health benefits through the VA.

The Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics, or PACT Act, expanded health care for veterans exposed to burn pits, Agent Orange and other toxic substances.

The enrollment period allows veterans who served in Iraq, Afghanistan and other combat zones to enroll directly in VA health care without first applying for VA benefits but it ends Saturday night at midnight.

According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 378,000 veterans have enrolled in VA health care since the PACT Act was signed into law on August 10, 2022. In addition, more than 4.4 million enrolled veterans have been screened for toxic exposures.

“Even if you don’t need this care now, you may need it in the future – and once you’re in, you have access for life,” VA Secretary Denis McDonough said.

Veterans are encouraged to visit VA.gov/PACT or call 1-800-MYVA411 to learn more and sign up for VA health care before the deadline at 11:59 p.m. local time on September 30, 2023.

Appalachia Health News is a project of West Virginia Public Broadcasting with support from Charleston Area Medical Center and Marshall Health.