Before we divulge into what programs are available for agent orange patients, let’s first discuss what this cancer causing toxin is.Agent Orange is a chemical that was used during the Vietnam war which many people were exposed to. It’s a chemical that is linked to various diseases.
Agent Orange Linked to Many Diseases
If you or a loved one served during the Vietnam War, you are likely familiar with Agent Orange. Agent Orange is a chemical warfare agent that has been linked to a wide variety of health issues in veterans. If you were exposed to this agent, you may suffer from one of several conditions. Some of these are: Multiple Myeloma, Hodgkin’s Disease, Diabetes, B-cell Leukemias, Prostate Cancer, soft tissue sarcomas, Al Amyloidosis, and more.
What Exactly is Agent Orange?
The United States sprayed this agent as a means to help eliminate the dense parts of the forest during the Vietnam war. It is a strong and tactical herbicide that is only used for military means. The name comes from an identifying stripe on the containers in which this substance was shipped and stored.
Was I Exposed To It?
Generally, all people who served during Vietnam are thought to have been exposed to this agent at one point or another. The specific dates of service that are considered for compensation purposes are those who were in Vietnam between January 9, 1962, and May 7, 1965. If you served during this time, it is likely and probable that you were exposed to this agent. Whether or not you show symptoms of exposure, you should contact the VA.
What is an Exposure Exam?
To help the VA track the effects of exposure to this agent, they offer comprehensive health exams to veterans that may have been exposed. This is one of the free services they offer in regards to this agent. This exam will help to determine your personal benefits. However, it also helps the VA to understand the long term effects of this agent to better serve our veterans.
How Can I Be Sure My Illness is Linked to Exposure?
The VA will evaluate where and when you served and do an exposure assessment. This will help to analyze the damage done from the agent and includes making a comprehensive care plan. This is one of the VA’s free services.
What Can I Do If I’m Suffering From Agent Orange Exposure?
As a veteran, you are entitled to some of the best free services that the VA offers. These can help with the conditions caused by this substance. Some of these free services include free health care, free therapy sessions, and monetary compensation. You may also be entitled to disability compensation. With your VA benefits, the best care for any conditions caused by this substance should be much more affordable. You can focus on getting both your body and mind back on track.
How Can I Get My Benefits?
In order to receive compensation and free health care services, you must be a veteran. You must also be able to prove that you are sick. It is important to have the necessary documentation of your services and any paperwork from your health care provider. Keep all documentation of appointments, billing, diagnosis, and medications that you have taken for any condition that you believe is linked to Agent Orange.
File At the VA Office
You may then file either in a VA office or online. Filing is free, and representatives from the VA office are on call to help make the process as simple as possible.
Does Agent Orange Cause Cancer?
Unfortunately, one of the most common conditions associated with this agent is cancer. Cancer can be difficult to diagnose, so it is incredibly important that you go to a doctor and get the necessary tests done if you have any symptoms of cancer. The key to successful treatment is usually early detection. In order to get the best free services from the VA, it is important to keep all of your paperwork for your diagnosis. The VA is committed to giving our veterans the best free health care services possible. They will work with you and your doctor to make treatment and medications affordable.
Will the VA Help With Health Coverage?
The VA is committed to helping veterans get the best possible free health care services. To help with this, they have programs that may cover your medication costs 100%. Your coverage will depend on a wide variety of factors such as your condition, when and where you served, what medications you need, your income, etc. If you need help with the costs of your medications or are struggling and want the best free health care services for veterans, make sure to contact your local VA office as soon as possible.
Did This Agent Hurt My Children?
In some cases, your children may be entitled to treatment, compensation, and free services associated with exposure. If your children suffered from spina bifida or other birth defects and were conceived after you served, this may be directly related to exposure from this agent.
Are Vietnam Veterans The Only Ones at Risk?
No, if you served in an herbicide testing and storage unit, a Thailand military base, or in a Korean demilitarized zone, you also have a risk of exposure. Additionally, residue of the agent may have been left over on military air crafts used after Vietnam ended. If you think you may have been exposed at one point or another during your career, contact the VA office to find out if you should come in for an exam.
Services Available to You
There are plenty of diseases that Agent Orange is associated with. This is why it is important that you talk to your local VA office if you have been exposed to it. There are also plenty of services available to you such as:
- Free Health Care
- Free Therapy Sessions
In order to file for compensation you are going to have to visit the VA’s website. From there you are going to have to file an online form stating the disease that you have as well the coverage you have been receiving.
If you have not been receiving coverage because you can’t afford it then this can be a great way to get the health care that you need. Many people are able to get free health care because they were exposed, so it is definitely worth looking into.
Proving You’re Sick
You’re going to have to prove that you’re sick in order to receive coverage. When you fill out the form online, make sure to include documents proving your condition and make sure it is related to Agent Orange.
File Online or In Office
When you file your claim you can either chose to file it online, or you can go to your local VA office and file it there. Either option is free so it really boils down to convenience.
Cancer and Agent Orange
A major threat that comes with Agent Orange is cancer. This is why it is very important that if you have been exposed to this disease that you talk to a medical professional.
There are certain cancer treatment programs available too for those that have developed cancer after being exposed to Agent Orange. Talk to your VA representative to find out what compensation you can receive.
It’s imperative that if you have been exposed, that you get tested immediately. There are many diseases associated with Agent Orange, so it’s important to get tested. There is free testing that can be done that is offered by the VA so get in touch with your local VA office to get tested.
Getting Prescriptions Covered
Some veterans also are able to get prescriptions covered by the VA so it’s worth looking into if you can talk to your local VA office. You should ask what coverage is available and how to get your prescriptions covered.