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VA extends presumptions of service connection for three new cancer types

Photo credit: VA Graphic

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WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is including three new cancer types in the list of presumed service-connected disabilities due to military environmental exposure under the PACT Act. This announcement marks the continued commitment under the Biden-Harris administration's Unity Agenda and the Biden Cancer Moonshot to support the nation's veterans.

Through a sub-regulatory policy letter published to the Federal Register, the following three cancer types have been included in the list of presumptive diseases:

  • Male breast cancer.
  • Urethral cancer.
  • Cancer of the paraurethral glands.

This policy establishes presumptions of service connection for eligible Gulf War and post-9/11 veterans who deployed to Afghanistan, Somalia, Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Uzbekistan, and the entire Southwest Asia theater of operations, which includes Iraq. Presumptive service connection means VA automatically assumes service connection for the disease and provides benefits to eligible veterans who have submitted claims with evidence of a diagnosis.

"We are working with urgency to deliver on the promise of the PACT Act to provide health care and benefits to as many toxic-exposed veterans as possible - we're leaning in wherever we can," said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. "VA is working with one goal in mind: getting today and tomorrow's veterans and their families the benefits they deserve as fast as possible."

Any veteran who currently has or previously had one of the listed cancers at any time during military service or after separation may be entitled to disability compensation benefits dated back to Aug. 10, 2022, the date the PACT Act was signed into law. VA will review all claims from impacted veterans and survivors who previously filed and were denied for these three conditions on or after Aug. 10, 2022, to determine if benefits can now be granted. Veterans enrolled in VA health care can obtain cancer screening and treatment at VA, which recently announced expansion of cancer care services closer to where veterans are.

VA has granted its 1 millionth PACT Act-related disability compensation claim and awarded over $5.7 billion to veterans and survivors since President Biden signed the bill into law.

Veterans and survivors can apply or learn more about the PACT Act by visiting or by calling 1-800-MYVA411.

There is no charge to file a claim with VA. For further assistance with the disability claims process, veterans are encouraged to work with a VA-accredited representative or contact their state Veterans affairs office.

For more information about VA cancer care, visit

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