Provider News - Community Care
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Provider News

ICON: Latest NewsThis page provides the latest information for community providers who are partnering with VA to care for our nation’s Veterans. From here, you can access the latest news, policy changes, and health care program updates!

To get the latest updates directly in your e-mail inbox, we encourage you to sign up for our monthly community provider newsletter.

Sign up for Monthly Provider UpdatesProvider Updates–Past Issues

VA changes email encryption software

September 25, 2019

VA implemented new email encryption software, Azure Rights Management Services (Azure RMS), on August 24, 2019, to continue to protect the security of Veterans’ protected health information and personally identifiable information (PHI/PII).

Community providers previously used Virtru Pro encryption to exchange sensitive information with the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Office of Community Care (OCC). On August 24, 2019, VA transitioned away from Virtru Pro and implemented Azure RMS as its enterprise-authorized email encryption software.

Emails encrypted with Azure RMS can be seamlessly read and responded to securely through existing email providers, once the settings are adjusted correctly, or opened in a web browser.

Providers still have access to emails encrypted with Virtru Pro and are able to read and reply to those messages. VA users can then open those emails in the Virtru Pro Secure Reader via a web browser.

Contact and Resources

VA Azure RMS Project Team

Fact Sheet: Azure Rights Management Services (Azure RMS) Encryption Software

Information on Azure RMS for external users*

*Please note: This website is external to the VA network. VA is not responsible for the privacy practices or content of non-VA websites.

This software update is part of VA’s Office of Information and Technology (OIT) modernization efforts to make communications more secure and reliable.

VA’s New Customer Engagement Portal Goes Live!

July 30, 2019

VA has developed a new portal with more robust capabilities to replace the existing Vendor Inquiry System (VIS) and better serve our provider community. The new Customer Engagement Portal (CEP) offers improved, more timely access management along with two-factor authentication for increased security. CEP also offers bulk upload capabilities for providers with multiple tax identification numbers, enhanced querying and reporting capabilities as it relates to claim status, payments, check information and offsets.

Register for access to the Customer Engagement Portal:

  • Go online to the Customer Engagement Portal
  • Select Login and Continue
  • Secure your access to VA by selecting: Register for a Sign-in Partner
  • Follow the prompts to register with for secure access. VA has partnered with to provide two-factor authentication verification for increased security.
  • Once the registration is complete, users will be returned to CEP to:
    • Register their Tax ID information via the “My Profile” link
    • Access the User Guide, FAQs and other training materials
    • Search claims and payment information
    • Execute, schedule and export reports


Customer Engagement Portal

Customer Engagement Portal
User Guide


Financial Services Center (FSC) Customer Support
(877) 353-9791
7:15 a.m.–4:15 p.m. CST

FSC Customer Support

Urgent Care Offered Under MISSION Act

June 6, 2019

As part of implementing the VA MISSION Act of 2018, VA offers an urgent care benefit that provides eligible Veterans with greater choice and access to timely, high-quality care. With urgent care Veterans have a new option for care for the treatment of minor injuries and illnesses such as colds such as strep throat, or pink eye. Eligible Veterans will be able to receive urgent care from an urgent care provider that is part of VA’s and TriWest's contracted network of community providers without prior authorization from VA. VA can pay for an urgent care claim only if:

  • The Veteran is eligible for the benefit,
  • the urgent care provider is part of VA’s contracted network of community providers, and
  • the services are not excluded under the benefit (excluded services include preventive services and dental services).

To learn more, go to TriWest Healthcare Alliance’s (TriWest) training on the Availity website.

  1. Visit the Availity website and login
  2. Navigate to the TriWest Payer Space
  3. Click on the “TriWest Learning Center” application
  4. Register for training

Provider Request For Veterans Care Agreement

June 6, 2019

The John S. McCain III, Daniel K. Akaka, and Samuel R. Johnson VA Maintaining Internal Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks (MISSION) Act of 2018, referred to as the “MISSION Act,” was enacted on June 6, 2018. The MISSION Act includes the ability for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to purchase community care through the use of Veterans Care Agreements (VCA). VCAs are only used when there is no participating provider within the Patient-Centered Community Care contract (PC3), the Community Care Network (CCN), DOD sharing agreement, or local contracts.

Providers may a request a VCA, but are strongly encouraged to join our contracting partner networks to receive referrals. In order to request VCA consideration, a provider must submit their name, address, phone number, national provider identification (NPI) and a copy of their current valid state licensure to the OCC VCA Review Team. For more information, please review the Veterans Care Agreements fact sheet.

PC3 Network Providers: Join the network at TriWest Healthcare Alliance.

CCN Network Providers, Regions 1 and 2: Email the VA CCN Provider Contracting Team.

IMPORTANT: If you have already begun the VCA process with a local facility, there is no need to start another VCA application. Please contact the local facility that started your VCA process.

HNFS Has Stopped Accepting Medical Documentation As of January 1, 2019

February 5, 2019

Health Net Federal Services, LLC (HNFS) stopped accepting faxed medical records effective January 1, 2019 and deactivated their medical documentation fax line. Community providers must now send relevant medical records to the referring VA Medical Center. For more information, view the Medical Documentation Update on the HNFS website or call the HNFS Provider Service Line.

HNFS Provider Service Line: 844-728-1914
Open October 1, 2018 – June 30, 2020

Health Net Federal Services Contract Close Out – Filing Deadline Extended February 5, 2019

February 5, 2019

VA has reached an agreement with Health Net Federal Services (Health Net) to extend the final date for filing initial claims to March 26, 2019. Originally, community providers were required to file claims within 180 days of health care delivery.

Health Net was a Third Party Administrator for the Patient-Centered Community Care and Veterans Choice Program (VCP) community provider networks. (VCP ended on June 6, 2019.) Veteran health care provided through Health Net ceased in June 2018, and VA’s contract with Health Net ended September 30, 2018.

To meet the extended deadline, community providers must file initial claims for Health Net-authorized services with Health Net by March 26, 2019.

For more information about the Health Net close out, please see HNFS Contract Closeout–Provider Frequently Asked Questions. If you have questions and would like more information, please call the Health Net provider service line, or visit the Health Net website.

HNFS Provider Service Line: