Healthcare Closer to Home: A Veteran’s Experience with CCRA

Cognosante is proud to support programs that increase Veterans’ access to timely healthcare. Core to our mission is a commitment to Veterans through both the work we do and in our hiring priorities. 

For the last five years, we’ve led the team responsible for implementing the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) award-winning Community Care Referral and Authorization (CCRA) program, which helps Veterans receive healthcare referrals in their respective communities. Through this complex, high impact program, we worked with our partners to implement the web-based portal that makes those referrals possible. The CCRA system has reduced referral wait times from over a month to less than a week, and currently processes about 560,000 referrals per month.  

photo of Lloyd Chase, Veteran and Cognosante employee

Lloyd Chase, U.S. Army Veteran and Senior Desktop Engineer at Cognosante, has had his own personal experience with the CCRA program. We talked with him to learn how his perspective as a beneficiary of VA services‚ÄĒand more recently as a patient of the CCRA program‚ÄĒinforms his work. ¬†

Tell us about your military background and why you joined Cognosante.  

I served in the U.S. Army for eight years as a Forward Signal Support Systems Specialist. After my military service ended, I transitioned to information technology (IT) work in the private sector and learned about Cognosante. I was struck by the company’s military-friendly culture and impressed by the work that Cognosante does to support VA programs like My HealtheVet, which I use myself. I knew it would be a good fit.  

As an IT professional and a beneficiary of some of the VA programs that Cognosante supports, how does that dual perspective inform your work? 

Here, I‚Äôm a team member of the Enterprise Centralized Service Desk (ECSD), which means that I provide behind-the-scenes support that keeps all our IT systems functioning well. This is similar in many respects to what I did in the military‚ÄĒI made sure that my fellow soldiers had the technology and communications tools they needed to complete the mission. At Cognosante, when I do my job well, my teammates have the tools they need to do their jobs. That, in turn, helps government programs like those that serve Veterans be more successful. I know firsthand that our program teams do impactful work, and I‚Äôm proud to play a role in facilitating that.¬†

Would you like to share anything about your experience as a patient using the CCRA program?  

Earlier this year, I needed emergency surgery. After a visit to my nearest VA Medical Center, I was given a community referral for care the next day. The entire process was seamless and incredibly quick. My information was sent automatically to the surgery center. The physicians and healthcare team knew who I was, and what was needed, which was wonderful. In fact, throughout the entire process, I never had to follow up or provide information again. Knowing that our own Community Care Referral Authorization team helped build the back-end systems that made that possible is incredible. I want other Veterans to know the system works!  

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Learn more about how Cognosante is helping Veterans receive healthcare at the right time, and in the right place‚ÄĒwhich is often in their communities‚ÄĒthrough the CCRA program.¬†

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