Resources For Veterans | Congressman Ami Bera

Resources For Veterans

What should I do if I think I have COVID-19 symtoms?

Before visiting your local VA medical facilities, community providers, urgent care centers, or emergency departments in their communities, veterans experiencing COVID-19 symptoms — such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath — are encouraged to call their VA medical facility or call MyVA311 (844-698-2311, press #3 to be connected). Veterans can also send secure messages to their health care providers via MyhealtheVet, VA’s online patient portal. VA clinicians will evaluate veterans’ symptoms and direct them to the most appropriate providers for further evaluation and treatment. This may include referral to state or local health departments for COVID-19 testing.

If you’re not sure about your symptoms, the VA has an Annie text messaging service can help you monitor them and advise you when to contact your VA care team or your facility’s advice nurse. The messages also provide general wellness tips and steps you can take to protect yourself. You can subscribe to Annie coronavirus precautions messages yourself, or ask your VA care team to assign it to you.

What should I do if I have an upcoming VA health appointment?

For routine appointments, the VA is encouraging the use of telehealth (phone or video) for your scheduled appointment. You can also cancel and reschedule your appointment for a later date.

If you have a non-urgent elective procedure scheduled, the VA may contact you to cancel or reschedule for a later date. Note: Urgent and emergent procedures will continue as scheduled.

To change your in-person appointment to a telehealth visit:

Once your provider schedules a telehealth appointment, you’ll receive a VA Video Connect link (or another approved video meeting tool). Learn more about VA Video Connect

Learn about our requirements for cloth face coverings

Managing Stress and Anxiety

The uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic has increased stress and anxiety for many veterans. The Department of Veterans Affairs has published tips for managing stress associated with COVID-19 including increasing one’s sense of safety, staying connected, and cultivating ways to be calm. Visit the Department’s Page on stress management to learn more about steps you can take to help alleviate stress and anxiety during this trying time.

Additional mental health resources can also be found at Mental Health America.

Resources for Veterans in Crisis

Help is available for veterans in crisis by calling the Veteran Crisis Line at 1 (800) 273-8255 and pressing 1, at VeteransCrisisLine.Net/Chat, or by texting 838255.

Resources for Homeless Veterans

Free Help for Homeless Veterans: Dial 1-877-4AID-VET (1-877-424-3838) for 24/7 access VA’s services for homeless and at-risk Veterans

Homeless Veteran Chat Confidential, 24/7 online support for homeless Veterans and friends for more information.