February 20, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 20, 2014
VA Announces Rollout of Secure Veteran Health Identification Cards
WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced
the phased roll out of newly designed, more secure Veteran Health
Identification Cards. The new cards are distinguished by additional
security features and will have a different look and feel.
In addition to being more secure, the card has been transformed into a
Veterans Health Identification Card (VHIC).
Similar to a typical health
insurance card, the VHIC displays the Veteran’s Member ID, a new unique
identifier, as well as a Plan ID, reflecting the Veteran’s enrollment
in VA health care.
“VA is committed to providing high quality health care while ensuring
the personal security of Veterans,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Eric K. Shinseki. “These new identification cards are an important step
forward in protecting our nation’s heroes from identity theft and other
The VHIC is personalized to display the emblem of the Veteran’s branch
of service. It also provides features that make it easier to use, such
as the addition of “VA” in Braille to help visually impaired Veterans,
and the printing of VA phone numbers and emergency care instructions on
The card replaces the Veteran Identification Card (VIC), which was
introduced in 2004.
As part of a phased rollout, starting this month,
the card will only be offered to newly enrolled and other Veterans who
have not been issued a VIC. Then, in early April, VA will begin a three
month effort to automatically issue the more secure VHIC to current VIC
cardholders. VA recommends Veterans safeguard their VIC as they would
a credit card, and cut up or shred the card once it is replaced. While
not required to receive VA health care, all enrolled Veterans are
encouraged to get a VHIC.
Enrolled Veterans can get more information about the VHIC by visiting their VA medical facility enrollment coordinator or the website www.va.gov/healthbenefits/vhic, calling 1-877-222-VETS (8387) or visiting their local VA health care facility. Veterans who are not enrolled in the VA health care system can apply for enrollment at any time by visiting www.va.gov/healthbenefits/enroll, Calling 1-877-222-VETS (8387) or visiting their local VA health care facility. ####
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