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VA Black Hills Health Care System


Returning Service Members

The Transition and Care Management (TCM) Program at VA Black Hills Health Care System offers transition assistance and outreach services to all veterans who have served in combat since November 11, 1998. Our program can help you receive the health care services you may want or need, as well as provide you and your family the following support and service options as you make the transition from active duty to civilian life:

  • Support to you and your family as you readjust to life after military service
  • Individualized care, specific to your unique post-military service readjustment needs
  • Professional and short-term counseling and referrals for mental health services
  • Assistance scheduling and accessing any needed VA Medical Center services
  • Contact assistance for VA services near your home
  • Information on VA and community services for which you may be eligible
  • Personal assistance finding your way through the VA system
  • Provide information and assistance regarding health care benefits and eligibility

Post deployment comprehensive health assessments and ongoing medical care is provided through the Transition Clinic conducted every Tuesday at our Hot Springs Campus, Thursday at our Ft. Meade campus and Monday, Wednesday and Friday at our Rapid City Community Based Outreach Clinic (CBOC).

After our initial evaluation, we would like to remain in contact and meet at least once a year with more frequent follow-up appointments if requested or necessary. Our staff has extensive experience working with recently deployed veterans. This experience has led to a greater understanding of the stressors and concerns related to deployment and the challenges associated with post-deployment reintegration.

Please contact us if you have any needs, concerns or questions.

TCM Program Manager
Lori Vosika, MSW
Office: 605-745-2000
Ext. 2176

Transition Patient Advocate
Alisa Birkholt


Special Eligibility and Coordination of Care for Combat Veterans Serving in Combat Theater After 11/11/1998- Returning Servicemembers (OEF/OIF/OND)

VA is ready to provide health care and other medical services to our nation's returning OEF/OIF/OND Servicemembers. The VA Black Hills Health Care System has a team ready to welcome OEF/OIF/OND Servicemembers and to help coordinate their care. For more information about the various programs available for recent returning service members, log on to the Returning Servicemembers web site.

Veterans who served in a theater of combat operations also have special eligibility for VA health care. Under the "Combat Veteran" authority VA provides cost-free health care services and nursing home care for conditions possibly related to military service and enrollment in Priority Group 6 or higher for 5 years from the date of discharge or release from active duty, unless eligible for enrollment in a higher priority group.

Combat Veterans who enroll with VA under this enhanced Combat Veteran authority will continue to be enrolled even after their enhanced eligibility period ends, although they may be shifted to Priority Group 7 or 8, depending on their income level, and required to make applicable copays. Additionally, for care not related to combat service, copays may be required depending on their financial assessment and other special eligibility factors.

NOTE: The 5-year enrollment period applicable to these Veterans begins on the discharge or separation date of the service member from active duty military service, or in the case of multiple call-ups, the most recent discharge date.