The Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veteran's Affairs (VA) (CHAMPVA) is a comprehensive health care benefits program in which the VA shares the cost of covered health care services and supplies with eligible beneficiaries. The program is administered by the Chief Business Office Purchased Care located in Denver, Colorado.
Due to the similarity between CHAMPVA and the TRICARE program (sometimes referred to by its old name, CHAMPUS) the two are often mistaken for each other. CHAMPVA is a VA program, whereas TRICARE is a DoD regionally-managed health care program for active duty and retired members of the uniformed services, their families, and survivors.
In some cases a person may appear eligible for either program. However, anyone eligible for TRICARE is not eligible for CHAMPVA.
To be eligible for CHAMPVA, you cannot be eligible for TRICARE/CHAMPUS, and you must be in one of these categories:
If you are in one of the above categories and you are over the age of 65 and have Medicare Part A entitlement, at any age, in most cases you must also have Medicare Part B. Please submit a copy of your Medicare card when you enroll in CHAMPVA.
Generally, in order to receive VA benefits and services the Veteran/Servicemember's character of discharge or service must be under other than dishonorable conditions (e.g., honorable, under honorable conditions, general). However, individuals receiving undesirable, bad conduct, and other types of dishonorable discharges may qualify for VA benefits depending on a determination made by VA.
For information on the CHAMPVA application process, please visit the How to Apply website.