@RAMMAC -I've never used the VA for anything other than my disability benefits. I know people that love the care that they get but I've come to the conclusion that it all depends on which VA Hospital you go to and who's on staff, it's definitely a roll of the dice as to whether you'll get reasonable care or not.
This reflects the experiences other vets have told me in person and online, as well as investigations by IGs and journalists. The quality of care is very inconsistent. The way the VA treat vets is a national disgrace.
Whether they were drafted or they volunteered, veterans wrote a blank check payable to Uncle Sam, for any amount, up to grievous permanent injury and even death. And we repay this with awful service and care? I'm not a vet, but I am still ashamed and angered by it.
I went to a regular ER with cardiac symptoms, and they they didn't bother with any red tape. The triage nurse took me right back for treatment. I can just picture an obnoxious, snotty GS-4 VA intake clerk on a power trip saying, "If you can't prove your status, you ain't getting treatment. I don't care if you are having a heart attack or bleeding to death!"