Veterans Benefits in Montana

Posted in Uncategorized on June 1, 2017
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Montana is the United States’ fourth-largest state geographically and has one of the largest per capita veteran populations. For veterans and active duty members living here, there is a wide range of benefits their service has earned.

Finding quality health care is always a primary concern for veterans and their families, and the VA Montana Health Care System provides a VA presence in every major city in the state, through a series of community-based clinics, a community living center, and an acute care medical center. The VA Medical Center and Ambulatory Care Clinic at Fort Harrison (Helena) is a 34-bed acuteResources for Veterans in Montana care, medical-surgical facility that offers a broad range of acute, chronic, and specialized inpatient and outpatient services, including internal medicine, neurology, dermatology, cardiology, pain management, oncology, surgery, ENT, psychiatry (including substance abuse treatment and PTSD- and MST-specific care), primary care, and more.

Additionally, a 30-bed Community Living Center in Miles City offers general and ventilator-dependent care, and primary care can also be accessed at locations in Anaconda, Billings, Bozeman, Cutbank, Glasgow, Glendive, Great Falls, Havre, Kalispell, Lewistown, Miles City, and Missoula. Primary Care Telehealth Outreach Clinics are located in Hamilton and Plentywood. Staff and contract specialists visit the clinics regularly and provide access to specialty care as needed.

For military families who fall on financial hardship during deployment, the Montana Military Family Relief Fund can help. Signed into law in 2007, these grants are intended to help Montana families defray the costs of food, housing, utilities, medical services, and other expenses that become difficult to afford when a wage-earner has temporarily left civilian employment for active military duty. Grants are available in three forms: status-based grant ($250 per eligible dependent to help offset costs associated with the deployment process); need-based grant (up to $2,000 to help families who experience a significant decrease in income during deployment); casualty-based grant ($2,000 flat rate to help service members who occurs a service-related injury during  or related to combat). For application information, contact the Department of Military Affairs at 406-324-3333.

Montana is known for its beautiful landscapes, parks, hunting, and fishing, and disabled veterans and the Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks Department offers discounted licenses to disabled veterans. Additionally, a new Montana law allows residents and nonresidents to donate their hunting license to a Purple Heart recipient with qualifying disability who is working with a veteran organization that uses hunting as part of the rehabilitation process.

For senior veterans looking for long-term housing options, Montana offers two veterans’ homes, one in Columbia Falls (northwest area) and one in Glendive (known as the Eastern Montana Veterans’ Home).  The Columbia Falls Montana Veterans' Home is a Medicare/Medicaid and VA-certified facility located just minutes away from Glacier National Park. With 105 intermediate/skilled-care beds and 12 domiciliary beds – including a 15-bed Alzheimer’s unit – the facility offers individual and group activities, spiritual services, support groups, social services, dietician services, and physical, occupational, and speech therapy.  The Eastern Montana Veterans Home in Glendive is a Medicare/Medicaid- and VA-certified, 80-bed intermediate/skilled-care facility that includes a 16-bed special care unit. The facility features numerous shared spaces, featuring aquariums, a bird aviary, a large gazebo, walking paths, and a garden. Services for residents include an excellent activities program, spiritual need services, support group services, and social services, in addition to rehab services comprised of physical, occupational, and respiratory therapy and dietitian services.

Montana is home to five veterans cemeteries, including the Yellowstone National Cemetery, located in Laurel, just north of Yellowstone National Park. An NCA employee operates out of the Community Based Outpatient Clinic in Billings to assist families during the committal service and serves as a representative for all families’ and funeral home director needs. The cemetery is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and closed federal holidays. There are also four additional veteran cemeteries, located in Helena, Miles City, Columbia Falls, and Missoula.

To find out what veterans benefits exist in other states in the U.S. please visit our complete Veterans Benefits by State guide here.

Montana Veterans Benefit for Assisted Living

The Aid and Attendance pension benefit is available to Montana senior veterans and their spouses to help pay for senior care like assisted living, home care, or nursing home care. Here is more information on how the Aid and Attendance benefit helps Montana veterans.

Written by Megan Hammons

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