Veterans can complete advance directives for health care
Does the VA recognize a veteran's desire to have a living will?
Answer: The VA affirms the patient's right to make decisions regarding his/her medical care, including the decision to discontinue treatment, to the extent permitted by law. Each patient has a right to complete a form known as an advance directive, a written statement that the patient completes in advance of serious illness about which medical decisions he/she wants made in the event the veteran can no longer make his or her wishes known.
The two most common forms of advance directives are a living will and a durable power of attorney for health care. The document will be maintained as part of the veteran's medical record and will be reviewed periodically with the veteran or surrogate decision maker.
For more information on advance directives, call the VA Medical Center at 433-0600.
Q: If my home purchased with a VA loan is involved in a disaster, what happens to my loan?
A: If your home is uninhabitable after a natural disaster, you are still responsible for making monthly loan payments. Contact your mortgage company immediately and discuss modifications of your loan if you are unable to make payments on time. Contact your insurance company but do not make a hasty settlement on insurance.
Get an inspection for structural damage. Obtain at least two estimates for repairs from licensed contractors. Insurance checks for personal property and living expenses should be made payable to you. Checks for damage to your home should be made payable to you and your mortgage company.
You must register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency to obtain federal assistance. To begin the disaster application process, call 1-800-621-3362, or 1-800-462-7585 for the hearing and speech impaired. For information, access FEMA's Web site at www.fema.gov.
Lastly, notify your local post office if you are not able to receive mail at your regular address. If you are receiving a monthly benefit check from VA, notify the Honolulu VA Regional Office at 1-800-827-1000.
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 www.va.gov/hawaii
or the Star-Bulletin at 529-4747.