Learn What Service Members Can Expect from inTransition Cold Calls

woman soldier talking on the phone in front of a computer.
U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Krystal M. Jeffers
By Leah Freeman, PHCoE Public Affairs
July 16, 2018

InTransition is a free, voluntary program that assists military members in finding a new mental health provider any time they need one and provides a warm hand-off during times of transition (discharge, retirement, deployment, return from deployment, permanent change of station, etc.).

Service members and veterans may receive a “cold call” from an inTransition health resource consultant (HRC) to learn about the program and potentially enroll. Learn more about these calls below so you can help prepare your patients or answer their questions.

Q. What qualifies a service member or veteran to be cold called?
A. All service members who have been through or are going through some sort of transition (retirement, expiration of term of service, discharge, chaptered, Post-Deployment Health Reassessment, permanent change of station, etc.) and have accessed behavioral health services, or have been referred to behavioral health services, one year prior to separation or transfer are required to be called. The requirement is part of an executive action signed on Aug. 26, 2014, by then President Barack Obama.

Q. Who does the cold calling? Is it a coach?
A. A HRC, a licensed mental health clinician, makes the initial outreach call to make service members aware of the program. If service members are interested in enrolling, the HRC will connect them with an inTransition coach.

Q. Where does the caller get the service member or veterans name and information?
A. Information comes from lists received monthly from either the Defense Health Agency, Separation History and Physical Examination, or Post-Deployment Health Reassessment. Contact information for each service member on the lists is pulled from the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System and Center for Health Care Services.  

Q. How does the caller identify themselves?
A. “Hello, my name is _____, and I’m a licensed mental health clinician calling about the inTransition program with the Department of Defense.”

Q. How does the caller explain the inTransition program?
A. An approved call script is used by all HRCs to help guide their explanation of the program, which is available to service members at no cost. The goal of the program is to connect them with a new mental health provider and assist with finding community resources. Coaches work with service members until they are connected with a provider and feel comfortable with that provider.

Q. What is the over-the-phone enrollment process like?
A. It takes 15-20 minutes to gather information during the initial enrollment. The enrollment process is intended to be conversational. The HRC asks about the service member’s transition, military service history, issues related to the transition, and anything else relevant to the service member or veteran. A psychological health screening is part of the enrollment process to ensure the wellbeing of the service member or veteran. HRCs offer assistance with urgent needs (if any) the service member may have prior to the scheduled coaching call. Finally, the service member is scheduled with a coach and sent an email confirmation of the appointment time that includes contact information for the assigned coach. Service members will work with the same coach until their case is closed and they have been successfully transitioned to a new provider.

Q. Is there an option for a service member or veteran to opt-out of future calls?
A. Yes. If the service member or veteran wishes to be taken off the call list, their case is closed and no subsequent calls will be made. The program contact information is provided if the service member or veteran decides later that they would like to access the program.

Q. What can the service member or veteran expect from the coach?
A. The coach is a partner and advocate, and will support the service member or veteran until they decide they have what they need, or when they are successfully connected with a mental health care provider. The coach can provide additional resources, even if a service member or veteran opts out of enrolling in the program. These resources may be local and community support agencies or programs dealing with a wide variety of topics such as employment, school, finances, family needs, and social support.    

For more information on inTransition, call 800-424-7877.

The views expressed in Clinician's Corner blogs are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Psychological Health Center of Excellence or Department of Defense.

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