Content starts here

Fewer Than Half of Eligible Veterans Use VA Health Benefits


Complicated enrollment processes stand in the way of U.S. military veterans accessing health benefits through the Department of Veterans Affairs, AARP caregiving expert Amy Goyer said on Monday during an interview with Defense News.

Goyer — who served as a caregiver for her father and grandfather, both of whom were military veterans — was asked about a study from the RAND Corporation, which found that fewer than half of eligible veterans use their VA health benefits. “It really is a bunch of things together that are causing this,” she said. “We know that the enrollment process is confusing for people. There’s a lot of confusion about the qualifications, which programs you’re eligible for.”

​Goyer noted that research shows women age 50-plus are the least likely demographic to use their VA health benefits and that special outreach may be needed to help more women understand and access the resources available to them.

AARP maintains a Veterans Resources hub and a guide to navigating military health benefits to assist veterans and their loved ones. Goyer described the guide as a “free, one-stop resource to help you navigate through the maze when it comes to VA health benefits.” AARP also offers a Veterans Fraud Center, a veterans-specific job board, a caregiving guide, and free career and résumé-writing guidance, among other resources for current and former members of the U.S. military.

Watch a recording of Goyer’s remarks, and learn more about how we’re fighting for veterans and their loved ones.

Get Our Daily Newsletter

Start each day with The Daily newsletter for the latest in health, money and jobs — and updates on how we're fighting for you.