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VA Desert Pacific Healthcare Network


Returning Service Members

Welcome Home!

On behalf of the employees and volunteers at VA Desert Pacific Healthcare Network please allow me to take the time to thank you for the service you have given to our country. Now that you are home, you are probably trying to decide what your next steps will be — whether those steps bring you to school, to work, or to settling into a new home, we encourage you to use VA services along the way.

In just one visit you will be able to see what our doctors, social service providers and caring staff can do for you.
It would be our honor to serve you. We hope to see you soon.

For the first two years following a returning combat veteran’s discharge, VA will provide free health care for service-related conditions in order to help provide a “Seamless Transition” home.

All Veterans with a general or honorable discharge from Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) or Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) can be provided VA medical care for five years following their discharge date for conditions suspected to be a result of their active duty.

Dental Care is available to Veterans provided that:

  1. the veteran did not complete dental treatment immediately before his or her discharge and
  2. the veteran applies for treatment within 180 days of his or her discharge.

If a Veteran has a service-connected jaw injury, s/he will still be eligible for care following the initial enrollment period.

Please contact your local VA to start your enrollment process:

New Mexico VA Health Care System Returning Service Members
VA Greater Los Angeles Returning Service Members
VA Loma Linda Returning Service Members
VA Long Beach Returning Service Members
Phoenix VA Health Care System Returning Service Members
Northern Arizona VA Health Care System Returning Service Members
VA San Diego Returning Service Members
Southern Arizona VA Health Care System Returning Service Members

Combat Veterans' Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible as a combat Veteran?
Veterans are eligible if they served on active duty in a theater of combat operations during a period of war after the Gulf War or in combat against a "hostile" force during a period of hostilities after November 11, 1998 and have been discharged under other than dishonorable conditions.

What are the benefits that VA Desert Pacific offers?
Benefits cover all illnesses and injuries, except those clearly unrelated to military service, free of charge for a period of five years from the date of discharge. Co-payments may be charged for treatment of non-combat related conditions (common cold, injuries from accidents that occurred after discharge or disorders that existed before joining the military). If a veteran did not receive a pre-separation dental exam from the military, then the veteran is eligible to receive a dental exam from VA within 180 days of their discharge from active duty. For more information check our national site at

Who should I contact?
To inquire about your health benefits or schedule an appointment to register, please contact your local VA.

What should I bring?
When enrolling you will need to bring

  • your discharge paperwork (DD-214),
  • prior year's income information,
  • dependents (if any) dates of birth, and
  • social security numbers and
  • any form of private health insurance

Where do I enroll?
You can enroll at any of our Eligibility Offices.

Can I enroll online?
Absolutely - The fastest and easiest way to apply or update your information in online.

Other veteran benefit information

For more information, please visit


Returning Service Members (OEF/OIF/OND) 

The Department of Defense encourages returning military personnel to check out this online health screening.
* The links on this page will take you outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs Website.

Special Eligibility and Coordination of Care for Combat Veterans Serving in Combat Theater After 11/11/1998- Returning Servicemembers (OEF/OIF/OND)

The Post-9/11 Transition and Care Management Program offers transitional assistance, case management and outreach services to all Veterans who have served after September 11, 2001 in their transition to civilian life. For more information about the various programs available for recent returning service members, log on to the Returning Servicemembers web site.

Veterans who served in a theater of combat operations also have special eligibility for VA health care. Under the "Combat Veteran" authority VA provides cost-free health care services and nursing home care for conditions possibly related to military service and enrollment in Priority Group 6 or higher for 5 years from the date of discharge or release from active duty, unless eligible for enrollment in a higher priority group.

Combat Veterans who enroll with VA under this enhanced Combat Veteran authority will continue to be enrolled even after their enhanced eligibility period ends, although they may be shifted to Priority Group 7 or 8, depending on their income level, and required to make applicable copays. Additionally, for care not related to combat service, copays may be required depending on their financial assessment and other special eligibility factors.

NOTE: The 5-year enrollment period applicable to these Veterans begins on the discharge or separation date of the service member from active duty military service, or in the case of multiple call-ups, the most recent discharge date.