Generally, emergency treatment is only covered until such time as the Veteran can be safely transferred to a VA or other federal facility.

Veterans, their representatives, and in-network community providers should report instances of a Veteran presenting to a community emergency room to VA within 72 hours of the start of emergent care. Out-of-network providers are encouraged to notify VA as soon as possible.

Notifying VA in a timely fashion is important because this:


  • Allows VA to assist the Veteran in coordinating necessary care or transfer,
  • helps ensure that the administrative and clinical requirements for VA to pay for the care are met, and
  • may impact a Veteran’s eligibility for VA to cover the cost of emergency treatment


Starting January 17, 2023, VA will pay for, provide or reimburse emergency care for certain Veterans and individuals – including ambulance transportation costs – and follow-on inpatient or residential care related to the event for up to 30 days, and outpatient care for up to 90 days, including social work.

Eligibility for COMPACT ACT

Regardless of VA Enrollment Status;

  • Former members of the armed forces who were discharged or released from active duty under conditions other than dishonorable after more than 24 months of active service.
  • Former members of the armed forces, including reserve service members, who served more than 100 days under a combat exclusion or in support of a contingency operation either directly or by operating an unmanned aerial vehicle from another location who were discharged or released under a condition that is other than dishonorable.
  • Former members of the armed forces who were the victim of a physical assault of a sexual nature, a battery of a sexual nature, or sexual harassment while serving in the armed forces.