First information regarding services from our Houston Regional Office for Benefits(VBA)(my administration), Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center(VHA), and Houston National Cemetery(NCA).
The Houston Regional Office(VBA) remains closed to the public. Veterans can continue to get information about benefits or file a claim for benefits by visiting our website at www.va.gov. Veterans with claims specific or other questions may request information via Inquiry Routing & Information System (IRIS) or telephone at 1-800-827-1000.
We are maintaining all other business operations. Monthly benefit payments will continue uninterrupted. Please check our website for future updates. https://www.benefits.va.gov/houston/
If you have claims related documentation to submit, we encourage you to utilize www.va.gov or fax to 844-531-7818. Claims applications may be searched and downloaded via any internet web browser.
You may request to speak with me directly via the NCC phone number at 1-800-827-1000.
Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center(VHA), has continued providing services to Veterans via Telemedicine Online services and the https://www.myhealth.va.gov Web Portal which allows Veterans to communicate with their providers via secure messaging. They may also order prescription refills through this same portal. In person services are being provided only in the case of Emergencies.
Are you a Veteran in crisis or concerned about one?
Connect with the Veterans Crisis Line to reach caring, qualified responders with the Department of Veterans Affairs. Many of them are Veterans themselves.
How to Connect With a Responder;
Call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1
Chat Connect online
Support for deaf and hard of hearing 1-800-799-4889
Houston National Cemetery(NCA)
Dear Funeral Directors:
Effective Monday, March 30, 2020, as part of the National Cemetery Administration’s on-going effort to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of our employees conducting interments, NCA national cemeteries will not accept floral arrangements with direct interments.
Families that wish to place a floral arrangement(s) (limit 2) may do so after 4:30 pm on the day of interment or any time thereafter. This change will be in effect until further notice.
We request you share this with the families in advance of your arrival to the national cemetery. We appreciate your patience and understanding in this matter.
We are all feeling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. As you know, the National Cemetery Administration (NCA) has adjusted operations in order to keep people safe and to do our part to stop the spread.
In order to get the word out to Veterans, family members and supporting organizations, NCA produced a video designed to explain how and why we adjusted operations. As you will see, the video shows that we are working harder than ever and our NCA team members continue showing the dedication NCA is known for.
Brazoria County Veteran Service Office:
Our office is still fully up and functioning with the doors closed. So if you get a Brazoria County Vet, let them know. They can call us 979-864-1289 to schedule a telephone appointment to file a full claim or an ITF.
We use a program called Vet Pro which captures signatures on the claim forms remotely from our clients personal smartphones (in the office we use a tablet).
When COVID shut things down around us, I realized we chose the right program last April. It has become very useful right now.
We just switched from face to face appointments to telephone ones.
We are unable to take clients from other counties, so we can only refer them back to their agency.
Sonya T. Broadway 979-864-1289
Gulf Coast Region Veterans Coordinating Council (GCRVCC)-Veterans Experience Office
The Houston Texas-based Gulf Coast Region Veterans Coordinating Council (GCRVCC) is one of those boards and has served as a CVEB in the state of Texas since its establishment in 2018. The GCRVCC CVEB has established a collaborative partnership with the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center, the Houston Regional Veterans Benefits Office, and of course, our Congressional and Community Veteran Stakeholders.
If you want to learn more about Community Veteran Engagement Boards or Veteran Friendly Community Recognition, visit the VA’s Veteran Friendly Community webpage. Or contact us at Vet-FriendlyCommunities@va.gov.
Eric Montgomery, MBA 210-365-1495
CSM US Army (Ret.)
The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) is providing information about utilizing alternatives to in-person Compensation and Pension (C&P) examinations during the COVID-19 pandemic to support social distancing and the safety and health of Veterans and clinicians. VBA will continue to complete as many examinations as possible using virtual means that do not involve a face-to-face examination. This message is intended to advise you about the change and provide guidance and resources.
What are C&P Examinations?
What are options for conducting C&P Examinations?
Why has VA decided to suspend the in-person examination option?
During the COVID-19 pandemic, VA recognizes the value of social distancing and the need to reduce the amount of face-to-face contact. On April 2, 2020, the VHA temporarily discontinued performing C&P exams in order to prioritize resources for essential and critically needed health care services in this emergency. This directive also eliminate in-person examinations except in urgent care situations and reduces the number of people entering VHA facilities in order to protect employees and patients. VHA will conduct some C&P examinations through tele-exams and ACE where possible. Out of an abundance of caution for Veterans and medical providers, VBA is similarly suspending in-person C&P examinations until further notice and will continue to conduct C&P exams through ACE and Tele-C&P, when possible.
What can I do to assist with my claim?
Make sure your current private medical records are part of your VA claims file. The Department of Veterans Affairs encourages all Veterans to submit their private medical records for consideration during the processing of their benefits claim. VA values evidence from your private treatment providers because they are familiar with your medical history, often over a long period of time. VA appreciates the trusted and special relationship between private treatment providers and their Veteran/patients.
Key methods that private medical records can be submitted are as follows:
Questions on Claims?
You can start and continue to file claims with no delay.
For individuals who need more assistance, VBA offers robust resources through the National Call Center (NCC) at 1-800-827-1000.
Intent to file a claim
Note: Intent to file a claim will preserve a potential effective date and allow the Veteran up to one year to submit a completed claim form. Veterans can also work with a local VSO to submit claims electronically or by mail.
A grateful nation thanks you for your service.
Connect With Us 1-800-827-1000