Licensed Counselors Now Recognized By the Department of Veterans Affairs

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has updated its standards of qualification for mental health specialists and now recognizes licensed professional counselors. This means that licensed counselors can provide mental health services to veterans though the Veterans Health Administration. There are specific criteria that must be met in order for a counselor to be qualified under the new VA provisions. But the bottom line is that this decision benefits all involved. With the growing mental health needs of existing and new veterans, increasing the number of qualified mental health professionals to help these servicemen and servicewomen is much-needed. This also is an important step for the progression of the counseling profession as a whole.

© Copyright 2010 by By John Smith, therapist in Bellingham, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to

The preceding article was solely written by the author named above. Any views and opinions expressed are not necessarily shared by Questions or concerns about the preceding article can be directed to the author or posted as a comment below.

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  • daniella


    October 7th, 2010 at 4:08 AM

    good news this…facilities for veterans can now have more and even better professionals to choose from and if there are more and more professionals it also encourages the authorities to open newer facilities thereby greatly helping the veterans community.

  • wendy


    October 7th, 2010 at 4:32 AM

    This is wonderful to hear and you know that this will improve access to care for thousands of veterans who may have not been able to receive it before given the strict qualifications that someone would have to meet in order to be covered to provide care for them. This opens up more health opportunities for the veteran community and I know that there are many families who are going to benefit from these changes.

  • Jenny


    October 7th, 2010 at 11:30 AM

    I’m suprised to know this was not implemented before. If a counselor is licensed then there should be no problem at all. Something like a qualifying test or something could have been taken and then they could be given permission. Nevertheless, it has happened now and all I can say is better late than never.

  • Hollis


    October 8th, 2010 at 4:40 AM

    I hope that many will take advantage of the new services which are now going to be an option for them.

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