Effective February 27, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will change the federal regulations concerning copayments charged to Veterans for medications required on an outpatient basis to treat non-service connected conditions.

Estimates show that copayment amounts would increase three times over six years if the current regulations are left unchanged, but switching to a tiered system and freezing associated copayments will continue to keep costs low for Veterans.

The new tiered copayment structure will decrease the costs of outpatient medications for most Veterans, aligning with VA’s goals to reduce out-of-pocket costs, encourage greater adherence to prescribed outpatient medications and reduce the risk of fragmented care that results when multiple pharmacies are used to fill Veteran prescriptions.

Under the new regulation, copayment amounts would be fixed and would only vary depending upon the class of outpatient medication in the tier. The rulemaking will establish three classes of outpatient medications tiers with associated copayment. Veterans who currently do not have a copayment or are exempt by law will not be affected by the change.

Veterans can view frequently asked questions and see a breakdown of the medication tiers by visiting the following links Medication Copayment Brochure-English Version or Medication Copayment Brochure-Spanish Version

For information on VA health benefits or to learn more about the new tiered medication copayment structure please visit theVA Health Benefits website.

By Shannon Baer, Public Affairs Specialist

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