As we approach Veteran’s Day and celebrate National Family Caregiver Month this November, we’d like to highlight the resources available for family caregivers of U.S. armed forces veterans. The VA Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers (PCAFC) provides support and services for family caregivers of qualifying veterans with serious injuries. The program, which was originally created to support family caregivers of veterans injured in the line of duty on or before September 11, 2001, was recently expanded to include veterans injured on or before May 7, 1975.
Who is Eligible for PCAFC Services?
The services offered through the PCAFC program are for the family caregivers who provide the stability and care needed for veterans to remain living at home versus in skilled nursing facilities. PCAFC provides education, support, a monthly stipend, health care coverage, and other benefits to qualifying family caregivers of eligible veterans. Certain eligibility requirements must be met to receive services through the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers.
Caregivers must meet these requirements:
- You must be at least 18 years old
- One of the following must be true:
- You are a spouse, child, patient, stepfamily, or extended family member of a veteran, OR
- You are designated as a family caregiver, and you live full-time with the veteran
Veterans must meet these requirements:
- Have a VA disability rating of 70% or higher
- Service-connected disabilities during active duty must have been caused or worsened on or before May 7, 1975, OR on or after September 11, 2001
- The Veteran must have a date of medical discharge from the U.S. military
- Require in-person care services for a minimum of 6 months
What Services are Available?
Assistance is available for care that supports the veteran’s health and well-being. Common examples of qualifying care include personal needs, such as bathing, dressing, and feeding. Other qualifying services are focused on protection, safety, or instruction for everyday living needs.
These services are limited to one primary caregiver, with up to two secondary caregivers. They can receive benefits such as:
- Health care assistance via the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA)
- Financial assistance when traveling with the veteran for care services
- Training and education
- A monthly stipend
- Mental health counseling
Applying for VA Caregiver Services
To qualify for these services, both the caregiver and the veteran must participate in the application process. You can apply here or complete the application process by mail or in person.
The Windward Life Care team thanks our veterans and their families for their sacrifices and for their service to our country. Our team is available to answer questions about resources at the local, state, and federal levels for veterans and their families.