Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans | Bob Woodruff Foundation

Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans

Healthcare Navigation For Veterans

This NFL-BWF Healthy Lifestyles and Creating Community (HLCC) award will supplement VA funding and enable MACV to serve veterans who are ineligible for the VA’s Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF). The funding will also enhance support to eligible veterans who are receiving homeless prevention services. Overall, this funding will increase access to benefits and healthcare for 60 veterans, improve their physical and mental health, and ensure they achieve and maintain stable housing.

The Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans is the largest agency solely dedicated to serving veterans experiencing or at risk for homelessness in Minnesota. In 2022, 63 percent of veterans MACV served had a disability and 49 percent were 55 years of age or older. Health conditions, especially those that affect a veteran’s mobility or mental health, often contribute to housing instability. Without adequate access to healthcare, it can be difficult for veterans to keep their employment, housing, and overall wellbeing. Many veterans served by MACV report that their homelessness or instability started with lost wages due to work absences, medical debt, and health conditions that limit their housing options.

MACV’s Healthcare Navigation program uses case management to identify veterans’ healthcare-related goals, connect veterans with the resources and care they need, and provide support to keep veterans engaged with the healthcare system. After a successful pilot through the VA’s Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program, MACV integrated healthcare navigation as an eligible SSVF expense moving forward. However, the need for this service among MACV’s aging veteran population exceeds the resources available through the VA.