Veterans Corner: News you can use

VA eases health care rules

The VA has eliminated the use of net worth as a determining factor for both health care programs and co-payment responsibilities. This change makes VA health care benefits more accessible to lower-income veterans.

Instead of combining the sum of a veterans’ household income with their assets to determine eligibility, VA will now only consider a veteran’s gross household income and deductible expenses from the previous year. Elimination of the consideration of net worth for VA health care enrollment means that certain nonservice-connected veterans will have less out-of- pocket costs. Over a five-year period, it is estimated that 190,000 veterans will become eligible for reduced costs of their health care services.

In March 2014, VA eliminated annual requirements for veterans to report financial information. The VA now verifies veteran’s income automatically through Internal Revenue Service and Social Security Administration records.

Anyone previously denied health care enrollment due to substantial net worth is encouraged to reapply or seek assistance from the Kauai Office of Veterans’ Services. Call 241-3348 today to make an appointment.

Attention, grandchildren of Korean War veterans

The Korean Government, Minister of Patriots and Veterans Affairs invites grandchildren of Korean War veterans to attend the 2015 Youth Peace Camp. Two camp dates are being offered June 22-28 or July 23-29. Limited to 100 participants per camp.

Applicants must:

– be a grandchild of a Korean War veteran from any of the 21 UN allied nations who dispatched troops and medical support to Korea during the Korean War

– be attending universities or colleges (including graduate school)

– possess a GPA of 2.5 or higher

– not have a criminal record

– be recommended by the head of the university, dean, professor, etc.,

– be able to communicate in English, and

– submit an essay about Korea or the Korean War or Korean War Veterans.

Support provided by the Korean government includes 50 percent of the roundtrip airfare (100 percent of the roundtrip airfare for students from the Philippines, Thailand, Ethiopia and India), official expenses during stay in Korea and all accommodations and meals. Interested applicants should contact Capt. Yang Yong Mo, Korean Consulate in Honolulu at (808) 595-6662 or email rokmil@gmail.com.

Gulf War Newsletter — Spring 2015

The VA has released the latest newsletter which contains topics of particular interest to Gulf War veterans, including:

– Proactive pain management: 10 ways to manage your chronic pain

– The fastest way to get a disability claim decision

– Gulf War registry: three reasons to participate

– Gulf War presumptive ailments/diseases

– Work group to study brain cancer in Gulf War veterans

– How to participate in Gulf War research and more

To subscribe to email updates about related military exposures, including notices of published newsletters, visit http://www.publichealth.va.gov/exposures/publications/gulf-war/gulf-war-spring-2015/index.asp

Korean War veterans reunion

The Kauai Chapter of the Korean War Veterans Association will host the 20th annual statewide reunion July 24-25. Activities include a luau, miniature golf, banquet and more. Registration deadline is June 15 and forms are available at the Kauai Veterans Center and the Office of Veterans’ Services. Info: Royce Ebesu (808) 822-4341.

Upcoming activities

Memorial Day Observance: 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m., May 25, Veterans Cemetery

Korean War Veterans Reunion: June 24-25 with multiple events scheduled. Info: Royce Ebesu, 822-4341.

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Tony Elliott can be reached at the Kauai Office of Veterans’ Services, 241-3348.

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