With protest over, VA green lights work on $26B care network contract

One disappointed bidder for a piece of the Veterans Affairs Department’s eight-year, multibillion dollar contract vehicle to stand up a new care service provider network has backed down from a protest fight.

That move means the winner of the $26 billion Community Care Network Region 4 contract now gets the green light to go forward.

In an emailed statement to WT Monday, TriWest Healthcare Alliance Corp. confirmed it has been given a start work date of Monday, Oct. 7 (or today) to begin its services across  12 states in the Mountain and Pacific time zones as well as Hawaii.

TriWest was first awarded the contract on Aug. 6 against two other bidders, according to contracting records.

Wellpoint Military Care Corp. then protested the award of CCN’s fourth region on Aug. 19 but withdrew it on Sept. 27. That was the second time this track of the overall CCN buy was protested as Intrepid Health Alliance filed a pre-award challenge on April 15 that was dismissed May 1.

CCN is the VA’s effort to standardize the way it purchases care for veterans from community health providers and cover care coordination for veterans that cannot access health benefits at local VA medical centers.

The VA first got going on CCN awards in December of last year when it chose UnitedHealth Group’s Optum business for three contracts worth up to $55.1 billion combined covering services in the 36 Eastern and Central time zone states.

CCN is divided into six total regions, with Alaska designated as Region 5 and the Pacific Ocean territories as Region 6. Those awards are due by the end of this year.

About the Author

Ross Wilkers is a senior staff writer for Washington Technology. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @rosswilkers. Also connect with him on LinkedIn.

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