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Get a Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC)

Learn how to get a Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC). Find out what to do if your card is lost or stolen and what to do with any old ID cards you may have used for VA health care in the past.

What's a Veteran Health Identification Card, and how will I use it?

When you’re enrolled in VA health care, you’ll use your Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC) to check in to your appointments at VA medical centers. This secure ID card keeps your personal information safe while giving us the information we need to easily access your VA health record.

You may also use this card to get discounts offered to Veterans at many stores, businesses, and restaurants. If you have a VHIC, you don’t need to request another type of photo ID card to prove you’re a Veteran or to get retail or business discounts.

Note: You can’t use your VHIC as a credit card or insurance card. It doesn't pay copays or authorize care at non-VA health facilities.

How do I get my VHIC?

First, you’ll need to be enrolled in VA health care. If you’re not already enrolled, find out how to apply for VA health care.

After you receive your VA health care welcome call

Contact your nearest VA medical center and ask to speak with the enrollment coordinator. Ask the coordinator to help you arrange to get your picture taken for your new Veteran Health Identification Card.

You can also ask for help with getting your picture taken at your next VA health care appointment.

When you get your picture taken

You’ll need to show a current form of primary identification.

Please bring your current, unexpired:

  • State-issued driver’s license, or
  • U.S. passport or passport card, or
  • Other government ID issued by a federal, state, or local government agency 

Note: This ID must show your picture and date of birth. If it doesn’t also show your address, you’ll need to bring a separate document to confirm your address. This may include your electric bill, cable bill, voter registration card, or another mailed document.

After we take your picture

We’ll process your VHIC and send it to you by mail. You should receive your card within 10 days.

What should I do if I don’t receive my VHIC in the mail?

If it’s been more than 10 days since you’ve had your picture taken and you haven’t received your card, please call the VA medical center where you had your picture taken. Or call us at 877-222-8387. We’re here Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET. If you have hearing loss, call TTY: 711.

What should I do if my VHIC is lost or stolen?

You can request a replacement card at the VA medical center where you had your picture taken. You’ll need to bring your driver’s license, passport, or other government ID or be able to answer a series of challenge questions so we can verify your identity before we give you a new card.

If you’ve changed your medical center since getting your original card, you can contact the medical center where you currently receive care. Or, call us at 877-222-8387, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET. Our staff will need to verify your identity with a series of challenge questions before we can send a new card.

What should I do with my old Veterans identification card?

Please destroy it by cutting it up or shredding it. We want all Veterans who are enrolled in VA health care to have the new VHIC. This new card offers even more security to protect your personal information.

It also offers other helpful new features. These include "VA" printed in braille to help Veterans with low vision to quickly recognize the card as well as a display of your latest branch of service emblem and a list of special awards you may have received.

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