Emergency / After Hours Care

Urgent and After-Hours Care

If you need non-emergency care, call the after-hours telephone advice care line to get advice about your health concerns. The advice line is staffed by registered nurses who will discuss your medical concerns and work with you to determine the care you need. The registered nurse will document the telephone call in your electronic medical record and notify the appropriate medical provider.

What if I Require a Hospital Admission?

Your VA provider will make appropriate arrangements to admit you to the nearest VA hospital that is adequately equipped and staffed to furnish the care you need. Depending on your eligibility and other factors, VA may admit you to a non-VA hospital.

Emergency Care

What if I think I am having a medical emergency?

Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. You do not have to contact VA in advance.

What is a medical emergency?

A medical emergency is generally defined as a condition that would cause a prudent layperson (a person who possesses an average knowledge of health and medicine) to reasonably expect that a delay in seeking immediate medical attention would be hazardous to life or health.

Non-VA Facilities

You should go to the nearest emergency room whether in a VA or private facility If you are in an ambulance, the paramedics will usually take you to the closest emergency room.

If the doctor wants to admit me to the non-VA hospital, must I obtain approval from VA?

  • If the admission is for a medical emergency – NO
  • If the admission is not for a medical emergency – YES . You, a friend, a family member, or someone from the non-VA hospital should call the closest VA medical center and speak to the patient transfer or patient administration representative within 72 hours of your arrival at the emergency room . You will be offered a transfer to VA if a VA bed is available and you can be safely transferred.

Does my enrollment in the VA Health Care System change my coverage for emergency care?

It might. Call your local VA facility’s Enrollment Coordinator to find out what your options are.

Does my other insurance (TRICARE, Medicare, Medicaid, Blue Cross, etc.) change my VA coverage for emergency services?

It might. Call your local VA facility’s Enrollment Coordinator to find out what your options are.


This information is curated content from the Veterans Affair Services ihealthcareupdates.com takes no ownership, and holds no rights or responsibility for the content of this information.

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