Written By:
Last Modified August 27, 2021
This page features 8 Cited Research Articles
Fact Checked
Our fact-checking process begins with a thorough review of all sources to ensure they are high quality. Then we cross-check the facts with original medical or scientific reports published by those sources, or we validate the facts with reputable news organizations, medical and scientific experts and other health experts. Each page includes all sources for full transparency.
Reviewed

Asbestos.com is the nation’s most trusted mesothelioma resource

The Mesothelioma Center at Asbestos.com has provided patients and their loved ones the most updated and reliable information on mesothelioma and asbestos exposure since 2006.

Our team of Patient Advocates includes a medical doctor, a registered nurse, health services administrators, veterans, VA-accredited Claims Agents, an oncology patient navigator and hospice care expert. Their combined expertise means we help any mesothelioma patient or loved one through every step of their cancer journey.

More than 30 contributors, including mesothelioma doctors, survivors, health care professionals and other experts, have peer-reviewed our website and written unique research-driven articles to ensure you get the highest-quality medical and health information.

About The Mesothelioma Center at Asbestos.com

  • Assisting mesothelioma patients and their loved ones since 2006.
  • Helps more than 50% of mesothelioma patients diagnosed annually in the U.S.
  • A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
  • 5-star reviewed mesothelioma and support organization.
Learn More About Us

Testimonials

"My family has only the highest compliment for the assistance and support that we received from The Mesothelioma Center. This is a staff of compassionate and knowledgeable individuals who respect what your family is experiencing and who go the extra mile to make an unfortunate diagnosis less stressful. Information and assistance were provided by The Mesothelioma Center at no cost to our family."
Lashawn
Mesothelioma patient’s daughter
  • Google Review Rating
  • BBB Review Rating
Read Our Testimonials

Who Is Eligible for VA Caregiver Benefits?

The VA Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, also known as PCAFC, says eligible family caregivers must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Be the veteran’s spouse, child, parent, stepfamily member or extended family member, or someone who lives with the veteran full time or will live with them if designated as a family caregiver.
  • Be assessed by the VA as capable of completing caregiver education and training.
  • Complete caregiver education and training and demonstrate their ability to fulfill all the care services and requirements the veteran needs.

Caregiver responsibilities for a veteran with mesothelioma include medical care, maintaining health and hygiene, household chores, grocery shopping and meal preparation, handling financial matters and providing companionship and socialization. 

What Are the VA Caregiver Benefits Offered?

It is important for mesothelioma caregivers to take advantage of any benefits they qualify for because the challenges of caring for a veteran with mesothelioma may lead to caregiver burnout and mental distress.

Caregivers of veterans with mesothelioma provide personal care services that include care and assistance to support the veteran’s health and well-being and daily personal needs. Caregivers also offer safety, protection or instruction in the veteran’s living environment.

Primary family caregiver benefits offered through the VA include:
  • A monthly stipend (stipend rates are based on the amount and degree of personal care services provided)
  • Access to health care benefits available through the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs, also known as CHAMPVA
  • At least 30 days per year of respite care
Primary and secondary family caregivers also can receive the following benefits:
  • Caregiver education and training
  • Mental health counseling
  • Travel, lodging and financial assistance for traveling with the veteran to access care

Many veterans with mesothelioma became eligible for VA caregiver benefits in 2021 when the VA expanded the program as a result of the VA MISSION Act of 2018. 

To qualify, the veteran must have developed mesothelioma as a result of service-related exposure to asbestos on or before May 7, 1975, which includes veterans exposed while serving in World War II, the Korean War or the Vietnam War.  

Types of Caregiver Benefits for Mesothelioma Patients

Some of the VA caregiver benefits for veterans with mesothelioma include:
  • Caregiver Support Line: The VA’s National Caregiver Support Line serves as a referral center and primary resource for veterans and their caregivers. When you call this line, a licensed professional will help you access services, tell you about the types of assistance available, connect you with a Caregiver Support Coordinator or just listen if you need someone to talk to. The service also provides monthly educational presentations for caregivers with a focus on self-care tips and support on a wide range of topics.
  • Caregiver Peer Support Mentoring Program: This program connects caregivers with others who have experienced similar challenges to provide support and guidance. Your local Caregiver Support Coordinator can connect you with a mentor in this program.
  • Mental Health Services: The VA offers individual mental health therapy and counseling. It is available through the VA or by contract. The Caregiver Support Line is also available when you need to talk to a caring licensed professional about caregiver struggles.
  • Rehab Programs: Caregivers may access support through a VA rehab facility.
  • CHAMPVA: Primary caregivers may access health care benefits and pharmacy benefits through the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The VA also offers benefits to spouses and certain family members of veterans even if they are not serving as a caregiver. For example, spouses and dependents of the veteran may qualify to file a VA claim for monthly compensation.

Other VA benefits that help veterans and their families include VA pension, VA Aid and Attendance benefits, Geriatrics and Extended Care benefits and the Fiduciary Program, which helps with financial affairs.

Mesothelioma Packet
Free Mesothelioma Guide for Veterans
Learn about mesothelioma, asbestos exposure in the military, your treatment options and more.

Veterans Requirements for VA Caregiver Benefits

In order to qualify for the VA Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, the following criteria must be met:
  • A veteran must have a single or combined service-connected disability rating of 70% or more. Veterans with mesothelioma meet this requirement because mesothelioma has a 100% disability rating.
  • A veteran must also need in-person personal care services for a minimum of six continuous months based on either:
    • An inability to perform daily activities each time the activities are performed
    • A need for daily supervision, protection or instruction.
  • The personal care services provided by a primary or secondary family caregiver will not be provided by another person or entity.

An eligible veteran can appoint one primary family caregiver and up to two secondary family caregivers to their caretaker team. When veterans need to add a new family caregiver, the veteran and their new caregiver must submit a new application.

Filing for VA Caregiver Benefits

To file for VA caregiver benefits, a veteran must already be enrolled in VA health care.

Once you’re enrolled in VA health care, the steps to file for the VA Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers include:
  • Visit www.caregiver.va.gov and download VA Form 10-10CG.
  • Mail the completed form to: Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers Health Eligibility Center, 2957 Clairmont Road, NE, Suite 200, Atlanta, GA 30329-1647.
  • You may also apply in person with the assistance of a Caregiver Support Coordinator at your local VA medical center. To find the name of your local coordinator, call the VA Caregiver Support Line at 855-260-3274.

U.S. World War 2 veteran saluting with an American flag in background
Access Free VA Claims Assistance
Get the Compensation You Deserve
Healthy fish, vegetables and fruit
Watch Our Free Mesothelioma Nutrition Webinar

  •  
  •  
  •  
Tell us what you think
Did this article help you?
How did this article help you?
What about this article isn’t helpful for you?
Did this article help you?

Thank you for your feedback. Would you like to speak with a Patient Advocate?