Instructions for Contracting to Provide IVF Services to Wounded Veterans
Sep 08, 2017
Origin: ASRM Bulletin
Earlier this year, ASRM shared the news that the Department of Veterans’ Affairs issued a rule implementing the IVF benefit for certain wounded veterans required by public law 114-223. Fixing this gap in coverage for our veterans has been a major goal of ASRM and the highest priority for our advocacy efforts.
The VA and its contractors have been working with SART clinics to set up contracts to provide this new IVF benefit in places where veterans have sought care and have been identified as being eligible for the benefit. The good news is that several veteran couples are currently being treated!
Still, we hear from VA representatives that contract negotiations have been slow in some places, and certainly as the word reaching more in the veterans’ community that this benefit is available, the need for providers will only increase. ASRM strongly encourage SART clinics to work with the contractors to serve this patient population. Helping these patients is a priority and essential to demonstrating to Congress the success of the program and the importance of extending funding for it (the current benefit is only authorized through September 2018.)
How can you help?
First, please review information on the Veterans Health Administration’s Office of Community Care website. Here you will find information about the two Patient-Centered Community Care (PC3) provider networks that the VA has contracted with to administer this program. If you are an REI provider interested in offering IVF treatment to eligible Veterans as a Community Care/Patient-Centered Community Care (PC3) provider, you must first enroll to be a part of either the Health Net or TriWest provider networks. Each network covers a specific geographic territory. Please consult the map to learn which PC3 provider network covers your location. Once you have determined which PC3 network covers your location, please contact them to register your interest in becoming a partner in providing this benefit.
Because the contract process can be lengthy, contracts are being set up as eligible veterans have been identified. Should you already be working with a veteran couple, it is important that the couple contact their local VA Medical Center to determine eligibility before they begin the process with your clinic.
Second, please consider ways you might be able to help distribute the VA flyer that tells veterans about the new benefit. Consider posting it on your website and/or printing copies for your waiting room. If you are active with your local VA community, please consider sharing it there as well.
Third, please know that ASRM is continuing to advocate (again the current law sunsets in 2018) for our wounded veterans and that the VA have the resources it needs to reimburse for the IVF benefit. A provision to extend this benefit for another two years has been included in the appropriations measure Congress is currently considering. Should we need your assistance in advocating with your elected policymakers on this issue, we will be sure to alert you and ask for your help.