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5 Things To Know-NEW VA CCN Tai Chi For Veterans Program

VA CCN Tai Chi for Veterans is a new Federal program in the Veterans Administration Community Care Network for Complimentary/Integrative Services. The VA CCN Tai Chi for Veterans Program is offered outside of a VA Hospital, VA Clinic or any VA Federal Facility. It brings Tai Chi directly into our local communities and makes Tai Chi more accessible to Veterans.

1. VA Goal- In an effort to decrease drug dependency, VA is actively exploring alternative forms of therapy to help Veterans ease pain and trauma. Tai Chi, a moving meditation, focuses on breathing and mindfulness techniques paired with light physical motions. In addition to improved physical health, Tai Chi may prove beneficial in the management of opioid dependence & reducing the symptoms of mental health conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). – VA Vantage Point-Alternative therapy: Veterans find relief through tai chi- May 22, 2018

2. The Mission Act- New legislation that expands benefits under the VA Complimentary / Integrative Health Services to include Tai Chi. Veterans can now find relief outside of the VA Hospitals, VA Clinics & VA Federal Facilities through alternative therapies such as the Tai Chi.

3. The Veterans Administration Community Care Network or VA CCN- Brings together the health care services of the Veterans Health Administration and supplements them with the network of community health care professionals, institutions, pharmacies and suppliers to provide timely access to high-quality health care. This is a fully funded, ongoing program through the VA-it is not a grant. Funding for the VA CCN is separate. For this reason, the VA CCN Tai Chi for Veterans Program is only offered outside of a VA Hospital, VA Clinic or any VA Federal Facility. General questions about the CCN can be directed to https://iris.custhelp.com/app/ask

4. Third Party Administrators TPAs- Optum, part of UnitedHealth Group®, is honored to partner with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs through VA’s new Community Care Network. Together, we will ensure that our nation’s Veterans have access to the right care, at the right time and in the right setting. Optum was named as the TPA for the VA Community Care Network for Regions 1, 2 and 3 on December 28, 2018, encompassing 36 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. Optum delivers unique services to the VA to accomplish its goal of delivering the highest quality of care to the Veterans they serve. TaijiFit, LLC (TaijiFit) has been contracted by Optum, to establish and manage the Tai Chi network of service providers in your region on behalf of Optum. TaijiFit is the only provider of Tai Chi approved and funded by the VA to administer services to our Veterans in the VA CCN. David-Dorian Ross is the National Coordinator of Tai Chi for Veterans and CEO of TaijiFit, LLC. To verify TaijiFit is the sole network manager, please call Optum at 800-873-4575. Proceed to bypass the automated questions to speak directly with a representative.

5. How to take advantage of this new benefit from the VA Community Care network- You need to be enrolled in VA health care to use community care benefits. VA Health Care eligible Veterans can use VA health care services nationwide, including through mobile health clinics that serve rural areas and via telehealth (care through a phone or computer). Not enrolled in VA health care yet? Apply online, by mail, or in person. Enroll in VA health care. Find a VA medical center or approved non-VA medical (called “community care”) providers near you. Find a VA location near you.

When can you use non-VA providers? It depends on the situation. Learn about the eligibility criteria for expanded community care, under the MISSION Act. Learn about community care eligibility For general MISSION Act health care inquiries, contact VA311 (1-844-698-2311).

How can you get a referral? The VA determines VA CCN benefit eligibility not Optum or TaijiFit. Step #1: Ask your VA healthcare provider (Primary Care or Therapist) for a referral.

When can you get a referral? The VA CCN Tai Chi For Veterans Program is rolling out by region and then county by county in phases. Illinois is Region 2- Phase 3 “go live” is Jan. 22, 2020 and includes counties such as Cook, DuPage, Will, Kane, Kankakee.

What does “go live” mean? When your county reaches the “go live” date Veterans in that county can obtain a referral number from their Primary Care Doctor or Therapist through the VA. When you have a referral you can sign up for services in the network. Locate and sign up for Tai Chi services at taijifit.net/vets-only

How much does it cost? Tai Chi is now included in your newly expanded VA CCN Complimentary/Integrative Care Benefits. Veterans present their referral to the VA CCN Approved Tai Chi For Veterans Service Provider/Certified Instructor. The VA CCN Approved Service Provider/Certified Instructor uses the referral to invoice Optum for the Tai Chi services provided to the Veteran. The VA provides the funds for reimbursement for services provided. A Veteran will receive Tai Chi Services at no cost to them when they present a referral from the VA to the VA CCN Approved Tai Chi Service Provider/Certified Instructor.

My VA Primary Healthcare Provider does not know about this program, what can I do to get help? VA Hospitals, VA Clinics & VA Facilities are beginning to receive education on the VA CCN Tai Chi for Veterans Program. However, if a facility does not know about this NEW program contact TaijiFit info@taijifit.net. TaijiFit is committed to superior service and care for our Veterans. It is our pleasure to assist you in the referral process.

How can local communities help? Venues in your community can help our efforts by donating space to host our Veterans. Do you have a space that can hold a max of 30 participants? Is that space available for a minimum of 1 hour & 1 time per month? You can help us bring Tai Chi directly into the local communities/counties where your Veterans live. Approved VA CCN Tai Chi Service Providers/ Certified Instructors are Independently Contracted and carry their own Instructor Liability Insurance. That means they have the freedom to travel directly to your community to offer services for our Veterans. Non Veterans are allowed to attend these classes, however Veterans have priority access. Suggestions include: Libraries, Community Centers, Hospitals, University and Community College Veterans Services Centers, VFW Halls, VSOs, Wounded Warriors Organizations and many more!

About your instructor-Dawn Nader is Certified TaijiFit Instructor, Approved VACCN Service Provider and Certified Tai Chi For Veterans Instructor. Dawn is an Independently Contracted Service Provider of Tai Chi for the suburbs of Chicago, IL. You can find Dawn at Joliet Junior College North Campus in Romeoville, IL & Joliet Junior College Main Campus in Joliet, IL beginning in Jan. 2020. Joliet Junior College is now a host venue for the VA CCN Tai Chi for Veterans Program and provides access to Tai Chi Services alongside their Life Long Learning Active Older Adult Participants. Please contact Dawn directly to find out more information about attending or hosting the Tai Chi for Veterans Program. Thank you for your interest. Please reach out with your questions: dnader01@mac.com or info@taijifit.net .

Helpful Links-

https://missionact.va.gov/

https://www.va.gov/COMMUNITYCARE/docs/pubfiles/factsheets/FactSheet_26-01.pdf#

https://www.optum.com/content/dam/optum3/optum/en/resources/PDFs/wf1295534-va-ccn-fact-sheet-final-7-11.pdf

https://www.va.gov/COMMUNITYCARE/providers/Community_Care_Network.asp

https://www.vacommunitycare.com/tpa-ap-web/?navDeepDive=VACCN%20publicHomeDefaultContent