Questions about Community Care?

Join Community Care Question & Answer Session


Do you have questions about Community Care?

VA provides care to Veterans through community providers when it cannot provide the care needed, whether because of time, distance, or other special considerations. Community care is based on specific eligibility requirements, availability of VA care, and the needs and circumstances of individual Veterans.

VA also provides health care to Veterans’ family members and dependents through programs like the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA). This care is also provided based on specific eligibility requirements, which varies by program.

Join the Veterans Health Administration’s Office of Community Care on Wednesday, July 31, at 4:30 p.m. ET for a question and answer session about community care.

Dr. Kameron Matthews, Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Community Care, will answer questions from Veterans, service members, and family members about community care, urgent care benefits, family member programs, and more.

Dr. Matthews will answer questions on July 31, 2019, from 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. ET. 

Participating in the event is easy:

  1. Become a RallyPoint member. To become a verified military or Veteran member – and participate with more than 1.7 million other Members – visit
  2. Visit the Q&A session to post, view, or vote on questions BEFORE the event goes live:
  3. Visit the live session (same link as above) to receive real-time updates DURING the event on July 31 (4:30-5:30 pm ET).

If you want to participate in the discussion, type your questions in the response section of the session. For those unable to attend the Q&A session on July 31, RallyPoint will archive the event for later viewing.

Jason T. Strickland is the Director of Communications for VHA’s Office of Community Care. Strickland is a retired Army officer who has been with VA for three years.


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  1. D Berger    

    The VA Mission Act is a great change, and appreciate. There are a couple of small problems.

    1. The program was opened to all Veterans rather than test the new program by starting with a smaller group, such as Veterans in priority 1 – 2. That is a large sample but small enough not to over load the program until the bugs are worked out.

    2. Outside providers such as an orthopedic surgeon should be allowed to treat the Veteran as needed for other conditions that was not found on the earlier exam. Example the Dr finds that the Veteran also has a lower back issue, which is in the realm of the Drs expertise. The Dr can not treat without a new SAR. A new SAR can take months in the mean time the Veteran’s condition worsens.

    3. The outside provider using the orthopedic surgeon as the example “needs” to have an MRI to better detail the Veteran’s treatment. They can not without another SAR, again can take weeks/ months. Solution? the Provider should be authorized to order an tests that are considered normal for treatment of the Veteran, currently they are not..

    4. Consules authorizing a provider should be good for up to a year before having to submit a new request. This would allow for followups and additional treatment as needed.

    I get a feeling the ones at the VA approving SAR’s are concerned the VA is headed to privatization so they do their best, including TriWest, to make the out-side treatment appear unsuccessful.

  2. Terry L Winbush    

    My VA medical Doctor wanted me to have a CR scan. At the local VA center that service is not available. The closet VA center that can do the CT scan is about 85-90 miles from my home. Under the Mission Act I should be able to get service at a local provider . My Va Doctor did request the scan in June 2019 when I last had a yearly check up. I have receive 2 calls from the VA to make the appointment . I told them that My Doctor said that I should be able to get it local because of distance to nearest provider. The ordered the CT scan in June 2019. I have let him know of this situation via e-mail. He replied that he sent in the order. It how August 2018 and I still have not been notified about using local service. So what is the problem ? The Mission Act was to make it easier to get care but does not appear so.

  3. Katherine Hedlund    

    No matter what i did and instructiins followed, i could not get to the online session


  4. J.T.    

    Has this been postponed? Not seeing anything live at the link

  5. Jill Johnson    

    Where is this being held? Or is it just online ?

  6. Anonymous    

    The community care system is a scam… you still have to wait at least a month to see your Primary Care Provider at the VA and wait that much longer to get a referral. Such rude staff at the Georgia VA… so much for taking care of our veterans!

  7. Charles Maggart    

    There are problems with this system. 1. People don’t know how to communicate to patients. 2. What’s in the computer isn’t necessarily correct. I was notified within a week of seeing my primary care to schedule an appointment. Was told community care would be faster then 2 months at the hospital. I agreed to it. When I did not receive a call from the provider I contacted our local community care office. Was told I would receive a call in a few days. I called 3 times in the next 4 week period to notify the local office that I had not received a call from a provider after being informed my request and info was submitted to two providers. Long story short, when a patient calls 3 times in a 4 week period somebody may want to find out what the problem was. I eventually received a letter from a provider indicating an appointment in January of 2020 after I contacted the local VA again to schedule a provider in the VA hospital. I did finally receive a local appointment which took about 3 months. Moral to story, if you don’t receive a call in the time frame specified go to their office and do a face to face and demand action. Do something other than look at the computer. Just talking on the phone doesn’t work.

  8. Bold Justice    

    In the VA Madison WI, you need to staff that operation with personnel that have a brain and speak clearly in the American English language. Above all, are knowledgeable about their job, and are willing to work assisting VETERANS.

  9. Frank Sottile    

    Local support for our Veterans is badly needed.
    Unable to endure the over 100 miles road trip to San Antonio or the 55 miles road trip Austin, I have NOT seen a Doctor in 4 (going on 5) years.
    I buy my Eyeglasses at Walmart and replacement Braces off eBay.
    I feel that the VA has fail me and a lot of other Veterans.
    This failure and lack of local support has even resulted in the lost of more than one life!

  10. Kenneth Perry    

    I had been getting accupuncture until TriWest took over in April. They repeatedly lied to me until my consult was no good and my doctor had to begin the process over with a new consult. I called and let them know that a new consult was completed and they said within 2 weeks someone would contact me. Well surprise they didn’t and after 5 weeks i called again all apologies and someone would call by the end of the day. Its been another week and i am in agony. I am contacting my congressman if i dont hear from them today. When the VA staff handled this i never incurred these problems. Tri West needs to have their contract ended!
    Instead of increasing capacity for care they seem to insure the lack of care!

  11. Chad Childers    

    It would be cool to VA one let the veterans use what doctor they see for Primary Care in any other specialty appointment. I know that’s a lofty but that would be awesome

Comments are closed.