How the Transcendental Meditation Course Fee is Paid in the Department of Veterans Affairs System
In the VA system, the financial mechanism for receiving payment for the Transcendental Meditation course fee is called the Fee Basis Payment System.
Although each VA facility has slightly different reimbursement procedures, most Fee Basis Payment Systems will be similar to the one outlined below. For the procedure for your area, please consult your local VA hospital’s Fee Basis Office.
1. The treating doctor writes up a consultation report stating what the veteran is being treated for and what the physician recommends. The cost and time span of the recommended therapy is included in this report. It is often valuable to remind the VA clinicians that the course fee covers a lifelong program including checking of meditation and advanced lectures that are available worldwide. When the cost is considered over a lifetime, then the Transcendental Meditation program is an extremely cost-effective therapy.
2. The physician’s consultation report is sent to the Fee Basis Office. If you are working at a veterans’ Outreach Clinic or similar facility that is outside of the VA hospital (Medical Center), then this consultation report should be sent to the Fee Basis Office in the VA hospital that has jurisdiction over your clinic.
3. The Fee Basis Office writes up the paperwork for approval by the authorization official. Then, the request is either authorized or not authorized.
a. If not authorized, than a letter of denial is sent to the requesting doctor with an explanation.
b. If authorized, a letter is sent that lists the doctor, facility, and dates of the requested therapy. For Transcendental Meditation treatment, only one request is needed per patient because the instructional course is required only once, and extensive follow-up sessions (e.g., checking and advanced lectures) continue for the veteran at no further cost to the VA.
Note: If we properly educate the VA staff about the therapeutic value of the Transcendental Meditation program, as verified by extensive scientific research, there should be no problem obtaining authorization. The VA generally trusts the recommending doctor’s judgment on what is best for the patient.
4. Once authorization is granted, we teach the veteran the Transcendental Meditation technique, and we send a bill (invoice) to the Fee Basis Office that approved the Transcendental Meditation treatment, which then sends the required paperwork to the central VA Fee Basis Office in Austin, Texas.
5. The central office in Austin sends a check to the teacher of the Transcendental Meditation course within one month.