Many massage therapists are able to become providers with the VA and have massage therapy covered. The Veterans Administration is Tri-Care.
VA (Tricare) awarded a contract to Optum, part of UnitedHealth Group, Inc., to serve as the Third Party Administrator (TPA ) for Community Care Network (CCN) Regions 1, 2 and 3. The VA awarded contracts to TriWest to manage CCN Regions 4 and 5.
To become a provider with the VA, you will have to know who the VA provider is. In the West, it is TriWest. There are five different regional networks but they use either Optum or TriWest. See map.
West Region States
The TRICARE West Region includes the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa (except the Rock Island Arsenal area), Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri (except the St. Louis area), Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas (Amarillo, Lubbock and El Paso areas only), Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
On the East Coast it is Optum.
Next get in touch with the Offices of Community Care Network of the VA Medical Centers in your area and apply to become a provider.
Here is the Optum Community Care website.
The VA is also hiring massage therapists to work at their centers. A few years ago they created a formal job description and a job number to allow massage therapits to officially work at the VA.
Medicare coverage for massage therapy is still being worked on but I would guess is coming soon. There are some Medicare Advantage plans that are now paying for massage therapy services. You have to be credentialed with the provider or check to see if they allow out of network benefits. Your client may also be able to submit a bill on their own and get reimbursed.
You will need to find out if preauthorizations are required and the process to do them if required. You will need to find out how to submit bills and get paid. You will also need to find out what to do if you don’t get paid. You are on your own on this for the most part, but you can learn the basic steps to billing insurance for massage therapy in my book Massage Insurance Billing Manual