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Women Veterans Health Care

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Pre-pregnancy Health

A healthy pregnancy begins with a healthy you. That's why it's never too early to focus on your health if you are thinking of becoming pregnant.

Preparing for pregnancy includes things like taking care of your mental and physical health, taking prenatal vitamins, and not smoking. But the first step of a healthy journey toward pregnancy is to tell your VA health care provider that you are considering becoming pregnant. They can check your current medications and talk about the risks and benefits of taking them during pregnancy, help you with healthy eating, and work with you to support your mental health before, during, and after your pregnancy.

Your provider may also ask about your military experiences because some conditions such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and experiences of military sexual trauma can affect your mental health and your pregnancy.

Your provider can help with family planning if you want to delay pregnancy or plan it for a future time.

What services does VA provide for pre-pregnancy health?

VA is committed to making sure that you have access to the full range of comprehensive health, maternity care, and fertility services to support your pre-pregnancy care. VA can also help you prepare for pregnancy with mental health services, housing, and food support.

VA's pre-pregnancy services include:

  • Mental Health: Resources to help women Veterans learn about different mental health treatments and services available through VA.
  • Maternity Care: Information to help women Veterans learn about the maternity care resources and services (such as Maternity Care Coordinators) available through VA.
  • Homeless Veterans: Programs and resources available to homeless Veterans as well as other housing assistance programs.
  • Intimate Partner Violence: Information and resources to educate women Veterans about intimate partner violence and resources and support available through VA.
  • Substance Use: Information and resources to help women Veterans learn about substance use and treatments available through VA.
  • Infertility Services: Information to help women Veterans learn about the variety of infertility treatments available through VA.

In addition, early in your pregnancy, VA will

  • Flag your medical records to alert providers when ordering risky medications, or X-rays.
  • Screen your prescription medications in VA's electronic health record system to alert providers who prescribe any potentially risky medications to women of reproductive age, even before pregnancy or breastfeeding/chestfeeding.

How do I access services for pre-pregnancy health at VA?

The best place to start is with your VA primary health care provider. If you do not have one, call the Women Veterans Program Manager at your local VA. All VA medical centers have a designated Women Veterans Program Manager to help you access VA benefits and health care services.

If you don't already use VA health care, you may want to use the following online tools:

Find out if you are eligible for VA health care

Enroll in VA health care if you haven't already

Find your local VA and make an appointment

Where can I find more information, help, and resources on pre-pregnancy health?

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The Women Veterans Call Center is your guide to women's health

If you have questions or can't find what you're looking for, you can call, text, or chat online with the Women Veterans Call Center (WVCC) at 855-829-6636 to get help and find available resources and services in your area. Trained women representatives can also:

  • Provide you with information on enrolling in VA health care if you have not already
  • Provide you with information on setting up a medical appointment in your area
  • Provide you with information about your eligibility (including questions about disability ratings) and other VA benefits like employment, education, and home loans
  • Connect you with your local VA Medical Center or local women's health contact who can assist in coordinating all the services you need

WVCC representatives are available Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. ET, and Saturday, 8:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ET.

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† VA does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of the linked website.

The Women Veterans Call Center is your guide to VA. The Women Veterans Call Center is your guide to VA.
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Weekdays: 8:00 am–10:00 pm ET

Saturday: 8:00 am–6:30 pm ET