VA to Stop Requiring Copayments for American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans

US Department of Veterans Affairs

The Department of Veterans Affairs recently announced that eligible American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans are no longer required to make copayments for health care and urgent care received through VA. The Biden-Harris administration and VA are proud to implement this rule, which is estimated to impact approximately 25,000 American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans.

Under this new policy, VA will reimburse copayments paid on or after January 5, 2022, and waive future copayments for eligible American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans.

Beginning Tuesday, April 4, Veterans can submit documentation to qualify for the copayment exemption. Eligible Veterans include any Veteran who meets the definitions of “Indian” or “urban Indian” under the Indian Health Care Improvement Act – including Veterans who are members of an American Indian Tribe, certain Veterans who are descendants of Tribe members, Alaska Native Veterans, and more.

“American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans deserve access to world-class health care for their courageous service to our nation,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. “By eliminating copays, we are making VA health care more affordable and accessible — which will lead to better health outcomes for these heroes.”

To receive this financial relief, eligible Veterans should mail 1) a completed VA Tribal Documentation Form (VA Form 10-334), and 2) a copy of official tribal documentation demonstrating that they meet the definitions of “Indian” or “urban Indian” to VHA Tribal Documentation, PO Box 5100, Janesville, WI 53547. For more information on copayment waivers for Native American and Alaska Native Veterans, visit here.

VA posted a final rule for public inspection in the Federal Register on April 3, 2023, establishing the waiver and process for Veterans to submit documentation to have their VA copays waived. This rule implements Section 3002 of the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020 Public Law 116-315, signed into law Jan. 5, 2021.

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Learn more about copayment exemptions for Native American and Alaska Native Veterans and VA benefits and programs for American Indian and Alaska Native Veterans.

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