Former POWs exempt on certain co-pays
: Are former prisoners of war entitled to any special benefits?
Answer: Former POWs are exempt from making co-payments based on income and other factors for inpatient and outpatient medical care and medications, but they have the same co-pay rules as other veterans for extended care. They also are now eligible for dental care without any length-of-internment requirement.
April 9 has been designated as National Former POW Recognition Day. More than a half-million Americans have been captured and interned as prisoners of war since the American Revolution. Former POWs are encouraged to register by calling the Department of Veterans Affairs' Pacific Islands Health Care System at 433-0600, or the VA at (800) 827-1000.
Q: I'm looking for a paying job. Will volunteering help me get hired by VA?
A: No. VA Volunteer Service volunteers provide supplemental support to VA paid staff. Volunteers are registered in our Voluntary Service System timekeeping package. This allows each volunteer to have their time recorded for many different reasons. It also provides protection from lawsuits should something happen during the course of their assignment.
Volunteers who are "acting under the scope of their assignment" are protected by the Federal Tort Claims Act. The same holds true if they are injured while on volunteer assignment. Volunteers are eligible to receive treatment and possibly worker's compensation claims.
For further information on volunteering for the VA contact the VA Pacific Islands Health Care System Volunteer Services manager at 433-0109.
If you have questions about your benefits as a veteran, call Fred Ballard at the Department of Veterans Affairs at 433-0049.
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.