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Veterans Service sounds health care alert

The St. Croix County Veterans Service Center warns that Vietnam veterans may be in danger of losing eligibility for health care under the Veterans Administration.

Vietnam veterans have been guaranteed enrollment to VA health care based on their presumed exposure to Agent Orange; however, the authority to do so expired in December 2002. The VA continued enrollments regardless of expiration, but efforts to discontinue the practice are under way, said Veterans Service Officer Merlin Blaisdell.

Veterans who are not enrolled in the VA healthcare program need to do so quickly. The window of opportunity is closing and advanced warnings of cancellation are not expected. Veterans already in the program are grandfathered in and won't be dropped, the Veterans Service said.

Veterans not in the program are urged to contact the Veterans Service office in their county or go to the nearest VA medical facility with their DD-214 form and enroll. All veterans are urged to contact their political representative and ask for their assistance in resolving this issue.

For more information, contact the St. Croix County Veterans Service in the Government Center by phone, (715) 386-4759, or e-mail,