For Your Benefit
For and about Hawaii's military

Sunday, July 20, 2003

See also: In The Military

Program for
post-combat stress
has Hilo location

Question: I heard about a program in Hilo that deals with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Can you tell me more about it?

Answer: The Hilo post traumatic stress disorder residential rehabilitation program offers a variety of services including assessment admissions; war trauma focus; PTSD and addictions; and Here and Now Groups, and is committed to providing the best possible care for our veterans affected by the psychological trauma of combat.

The Hilo program has maintained a 100 percent completion rate of assessments administered during the time veterans are admitted to the program. During fiscal year 2002, a completion rate of 90.3 percent was achieved, significantly higher than the national average of 81.1 percent.

This program is unique because it is the only freestanding program located in the community rather than in a medical center setting. For further information or how to enroll in the program, contact the Hilo PRRP at (808) 969-1684, or call the VA Medical Center at 433-0600.

Q: I am thinking of relocating overseas this summer. What will the VA pay for if I need medical treatment in a foreign country?

A: The VA will pay for medical services for the treatment of service-connected disabilities and related conditions for veterans abroad. VA does not authorize nursing-home care in foreign jurisdictions, except for the Philippines. The Foreign Medical Program Office, P.O. Box 65021, Denver, CO 80206-9021, must authorize services in most foreign countries. Their phone number is (303) 331-7590. Services provided in Canada are under the jurisdiction of the VA Center in White River Junction, VT 05009-0001, and the Philippines are under the jurisdiction of the USVA Office, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City 1300, M.M., or VA Outpatient Clinic, Regional Office, FPO AP 96575.

Other VA monetary benefits, including compensation, pension, educational assistance and burial allowances, generally are payable overseas. Some programs in foreign jurisdiction are restricted. Home loan guarantees are available only in the United States and selected U.S. territories and possessions. Beneficiaries residing in foreign countries should contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or consulate for information and claims assistance. In Canada, veterans should contact an office of Veterans Affairs Canada.

If you have questions about your benefits as a veteran,
call Fred Ballard at the Veterans Affairs at 433-0049
or visit the VA Web site at
or the Star-Bulletin at 529-4747.

Gregg K. Kakesako, who covers military affairs for the Star-Bulletin,
can be reached by phone at 294-4075
or by e-mail at


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