The Veterans Directed Home and Community Based Services program is designed to allow veterans who are potential candidates for nursing home placement to receive a comparable level of care in their own homes. This program (“Independence Plus”) enables veterans to manage their own medical affairs within a budget defined and agreed upon by the VA health care system. In some cases, family members of the veteran can be paid for the care they provide.

The Veterans Directed Home and Community Based Services program allows veterans to prioritize their own care needs, select their own care providers, and act as an employer instead of receiving nursing home care directly from the VA.

Veteran Status Requirements:
Most veterans are required to have had 24 months of continuous active duty military service. However, there are exceptions to the 24 month rule. For example, 1) Reservists or National Guard members that were called to Active Duty and completed their terms; 2) Those requiring treatment for a service-connected condition or disability; and 3) Those discharged or released from active duty for a hardship or an “early out.”

Veterans will need an “honorary” discharge status from their military branch. In other words, vets with a discharge status defined as “bad conduct” or “dishonorable” will not be eligible to participate in this benefits program.

Veterans are eligible provided they require “nursing home level care”:

The Veterans Directed Home program is open to veterans of any age. However, veterans must be enrolled in the VA health care system, and their health/medical needs require a nursing home level of care. Obviously, there are multiple factors and individual exceptions associated with this requirement. Typically, eligible veterans will require assistance with three (3) or more “activities of daily living”. Restrictions are less rigid for those veterans over 75 years of age, or who are clinically depressed, or receiving hospice care, or currently live alone. A veteran’s marital or family status does not effect their eligibility for participation in this program.

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