VA Community Care Network Program Provider for Addiction Treatment
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) works to provide health care, disability, career resources, housing assistance, life insurance, and education and training to veterans, service members, and families.1 VA recognizes the importance of caring for and treating the mental health and substance addiction experienced by some veterans and provides high-quality treatment. However, there are certain instances in which VA is either unable to provide the needed services or cannot provide them in a timely manner. With the intention of providing care to all veterans, regardless of availability of services, the MISSION Act was introduced.
The MISSION Act
The MISSION Act provides veterans with increased access to health care from both VA facilities and from general care providers in the community.2 Typically, veterans who are pursuing care from a community provider will need approval from VA before they can receive treatment. Once they have obtained that approval, based on eligibility requirements, availability of care at VA, and the needs of the veteran, they can then seek alcohol and drug addiction treatment through local, VA-approved facilities.3
With approval from VA, veterans are able to receive care from non-VA providers, but the care must be provided by VA-approved community care providers (CCPs). The care from a community provider is provided on behalf of and paid for by VA.3 The types of care available from CCPs include general care; emergency care; urgent care; flu shots; and home, health, and hospice care.3 To find a community care provider, you can use the VA’s locator tool.
All CCPs are required to go through a stringent credentialing process in order to have VA endorse them as a treatment resource.4
Checking Your Insurance Benefits
As a veteran, it may feel daunting to address your addiction, but there is help available for you. If you are looking for addiction treatment, it can feel overwhelming. As you consider your options, knowing what your insurance plan covers can give you peace of mind while you are in rehab. You can do the work of getting and staying sober without worrying about unexpected costs or financial struggles. For more information on what your insurance plan covers, call AAC at , click here, or fill out the form below. There is hope for veterans suffering from addiction and other mental health conditions, so reach out today.
What is the VA Community Care Program Network?
For those who are unable to obtain treatment through the VA, veterans can receive care through the Community Care program.5 The Community Care program provides veterans with access to services through local CCPs that have VA approval. The costs of these services are the same as they would be if care was provided through a VA drug rehab facility.
The Community Care Network (CCN) is a system of healthcare providers that provide care and services to veterans when the VA is unable to do so.3 The CCN is made up of doctors, facilities, and additional practitioners that are external providers located in your community. These providers may offer a broader range of services than local VA providers are able to provide. This can include addition rehab and co-occurring mental health disorder treatment. Again, the services provided by Community Care providers are typically covered by the VA.3
As a Community Care partner, American Addiction Centers (AAC) can provide veterans with alcohol and drug addiction treatment at any of our facilities.
Who Qualifies for the Veterans Community Care Program?
To get started with the Community Care program, the first step is to make an appointment at the VA, where they will determine if you are eligible.6 Once you’ve received authorization for community care, you can search for an approved provider or obtain assistance from VA.6 Then schedule an appointment and notify the VA, who will send your referral to you and the provider.1
Care through Community Care is available for eligible veterans. Eligibility for Community Care requires a veteran to be enrolled in the VA healthcare system and receive approval from VA staff.
To be eligible for Community Care, veterans need to meet one of six requirements for approval. The veteran:8
- Needs a service not offered at the nearest VA medical facility
- Lives in a U.S. state or territory that lacks a full-service VA medical facility
- Care cannot meet any of the access standards (including timeframe and distance)
- Needs services that are in their best interest
- Qualifies for the “grandfather” provision regarding distance to a facility
- Needs services and those offered at a VA facility do not meet quality standards
What are the Benefits of VA Community Care Program Network?
There are various benefits of the VA Community Care Network. The network provides quality care for veterans who are unable to obtain care at traditional VA medical centers. CCN benefits include the following:9
- Expanded services to eligible veterans.
- Improved customer service.
- Improved provider accountability.
- Improved care coordination.
- Improved referral process.
- Improved scheduling capabilities.
- Improved reimbursement of providers.
What Type of Treatment is Offered for Veterans?
There are various types of treatment offered to veterans, both at the VA and through the CCN. When it comes to both substance use disorders (SUDs) and mental health issues (including post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression), there are programs available that focus specifically on the treatment of veterans. Treatment may include:
Addiction treatment may also include medical detoxification, various forms of therapy (individual, group, family), life skills, wellness activities, and holistic therapies.
American Addiction Centers and Community Care
American Addiction Centers (AAC) is made up of the United States’ largest network of substance abuse treatment centers. AAC is an authorized community network care provider that has partnered with VA to offer private mental health and substance abuse treatment at two locations: Desert Hope and Recovery First.
As CCPs, both facilities have programs, Salute to Recovery, that are specifically designed to treat veterans dealing with both substance abuse and mental health disorders. The Salute to Recovery program provides a safe environment where veterans are with others with similar experiences and struggles. These common threads that tie the veterans together allow them to feel more comfortable and understood in a facility surrounded by patients and staff members who are also veterans. The program focuses on areas that are specific to the experiences and needs of veterans, including:
- Military culture.
- Character and values.
- The Impact of Stress
- Post-traumatic responses.
- Family and relationships.
- Cognitive distortions.
The treatment teams at both facilities offer treatment methods including anger management, coping skills, conflict resolution, family and couples counseling, and proven therapies.
AAC’s facilities are committed to working in partnership with VA as CCPs to provide the life-changing care that veterans need as they begin on their road to recovery from alcohol or drug addiction and mental health challenges.
*Wondering if you or a loved one has an addiction problem? Find out in less than 5 minutes with our confidential survey.
What If I Have Private Health Insurance?
As a veteran, you can receive healthcare through the VA. However, some veterans choose to have private health insurance. If you have private health insurance, your addiction care and treatment may be covered by your insurance plan.
So, does your private health insurance cover addiction treatment? When the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed, it mandated that all insurance policies include coverage for substance addiction treatment at a level equal to coverage provided for other medical conditions.1 This means that you can expect your private insurance mental health coverage to include substance abuse treatment benefits and coverage for treatment for other mental health disorders.1 However, only some of the cost of rehab may be covered, so make sure to check your insurance plan to see what is and is not included.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (n.d.). Access and Manage Your VA Benefits and Health Care.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2020). VA MISSION Act.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2019). Community Care: Veterans Overview.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2020). Community Care: Provider Overview.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2019). Veteran community care: General information.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2019). How to become a VA community provider.
- Healthcare.gov. (n.d.). Mental health & substance abuse coverage.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Administration. (2019). Veteran community care eligibility.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. (2021). Community Care Network (CCN) Fact Sheet.