What to Know About the New CPT Codes for COVID-19 Vaccines

What are CPT Codes?

Current Procedural Terminology codes are created, copyrighted, and maintained by the American Medical Association. This is a huge task, as health care practices are constantly shifting, requiring new codes to be created for new services and current codes to be revised or retired as needed. Thousands of codes are in use, and the AMA updates them annually.

A Breakdown of the Coronavirus Vaccines CPT Codes

On September 1, 2020, the AMA released the 2021 CPT code list, which went into effect on January 1 of this year. There was a total of 329 CPT code changes, including 206 code additions, 54 code deletions, and 69 code revisions. Among those added to the list were a unique CPT code for each of five coronavirus vaccines— those from Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson, which had at the time of release, received emergency use authorization from the FDA; and those made by AstraZeneca and Novavax, which at the time of release were still awaiting EUA— as well as administration codes unique to each such vaccine.

The CPT codes clinically distinguish each coronavirus vaccine from its fellows. This allows for better tracking, reporting, and analysis of the use and results of each vaccine, which will in turn enable data-driven planning and allocation. Making it easier for providers to update and track patients’ records will make it easier for

AMA President Susan R. Bailey, MD., said, “[A]ccurately correlating vaccinated patients with one of the available COVID-19 vaccines is critical for managing immunizations. This challenge is managed with unique CPT codes that clinically distinguish each COVID-19 vaccine and provide the needed informational precision to ensure optimal vaccine distribution and administration.”

For quick reference, the Category I CPT codes and long descriptors for the vaccine products are:

  • 91300: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (Coronavirus disease [COVID-19]) vaccine, mRNA-LNP, spike protein, preservative free, 30 mcg/0.3mL dosage, diluent reconstituted, for intramuscular use.
  • 91301: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (Coronavirus disease [COVID-19]) vaccine, mRNA-LNP, spike protein, preservative free, 100 mcg/0.5mL dosage, for intramuscular use.
  • 91302: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (coronavirus disease [COVID-19]) vaccine, DNA, spike protein, chimpanzee adenovirus Oxford 1 (ChAdOx1) vector, preservative free, 5×1010 viral particles/0.5mL dosage, for intramuscular use.
  • 91303: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (coronavirus disease [COVID-19]) vaccine, DNA, spike protein, adenovirus type 26 (Ad26) vector, preservative free, 5×1010 viral particles/0.5mL dosage, for intramuscular use.
  • 91304: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (coronavirus disease [COVID-19]) vaccine, recombinant spike protein nanoparticle, saponin-based adjuvant, preservative free, 5 mcg/0.5mL dosage, for intramuscular use.

This level of specificity is a first for vaccine CPT codes, which offers the ability to track each vaccine dose, even when the vaccine is not reported in a claim (i.e., the dose was given to the patient for free). There are also administrative codes that accompany each CPT code to indicate dosage amount; this incorporates the specialized tracking needs of the CDC and CMS. The code group above identifies a specific vaccine product, and the other provides a vaccine administration code that is both vaccine and dose specific. It is important to select the code that has been created for that manufacturer’s vaccine.

In order to assist with this process, the AMA has put out a resource to assist you in finding the right CPT code combination for the type and dose of vaccine you are using. Visit their website https://www.ama-assn.org/find-covid-19-vaccine-codes to use the tool and find the right codes in minutes.

How Contact Tracing Works

how contact tracing works

In the earliest days of the COVID-19 pandemic, governments and health organizations scrambled for ways to protect vulnerable people and slow the spread of the virus. One vital strategy has been contact tracing, which involves warning those who have been in contact with the virus. Once someone learns of their exposure to the virus, they can quarantine to limit further spread.

Contact tracing is an effective strategy for limiting viral spread. Whether on the community, state or federal level, contact tracing keeps people informed and helps better organize quarantine efforts. Learn how contact tracing works, who performs it and how you can find contact tracing services for your workplace.

What Is Contact Tracing?

Contact tracing is one way a community can slow the spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19. In essence, it’s the practice of tracking positive test results and notifying others of close contact with the virus. A contact alert lets people know they need to quarantine. Contact tracing has helped reduce the spread of COVID-19. It was also beneficial during the SARS epidemic of 2004, and advancing technology could make the strategy more effective during future viral outbreaks.

location tracking and contact tracing services

How Does Contact Tracing Work?

Contact tracing is a straightforward procedure in theory, though it can be challenging on a massive scale. With a highly infectious virus such as COVID-19, identifying every exposed person is easier said than done. Even so, the process for contact tracing is as follows:

  1. A patient takes a test for an infectious disease and has a positive result.
  2. A public health professional reaches out to the patient as soon as possible to inform them of their positive status.
  3. They explain how and for how long the patient should quarantine.
  4. They ask the patient to identify anyone they’ve been in close contact with during the time they were infectious.
  5. They then reach out to everyone the patient has been in close contact with and let people know about their exposure to the virus without mentioning the patient’s name.
  6. They provide information and support to exposed people. For example, they may offer a referral for testing, help them monitor for symptoms of the virus and connect them with any services they need for quarantine.

A crucial factor in this process is finding everyone the patient has come in contact with. As you can imagine, this can pose a challenge, especially in heavily populated areas. Even with group gatherings suspended, people must still shop for supplies and groceries or use public transportation. Emerging technology may make contact tracing easier, thanks to location tracking on cellphones. If most people used location tracking and contact tracing services, it would be much simpler to identify everyone a patient has been in contact with.

How Does Contact Tracing Help?

One of the most fundamental ways to stop the spread of a virus is awareness of exposure. One primary issue with many viruses, including COVID-19, is that many people have no idea they’re carrying the virus until they’ve already infected others. Symptoms may not appear until after the infectious period. Fast, effective contact tracing alerts those who may be carrying the virus so they can quarantine themselves right away. This strategy stops the virus in its tracks.

who performs contact tracing

Who Performs Contact Tracing?

Many different organizations can perform contact tracing, including small and large health offices and other institutions. In addition to HCRS, it’s possible to outsource contact tracing to any of the following entities.

Public Health Agencies

Public or government health agencies focus on providing the public with information and resources. Examples of public health agencies include the FDA and the National Institutes of Health. Such agencies tend to operate on a large scale and have gained overall public trust, so they’re perfect for performing contact tracing services on a national level.

State Health Departments

State health departments are responsible for protecting and improving citizens’ health. All 50 U.S. states have a state-level health department devoted to this purpose. Government involvement at the state level is beneficial, as state health departments have access to broad-scale data collection and other infrastructure. These departments can help with contact tracing during the spread of an infectious disease.

Local Health Departments

Local health departments are also helpful for contact tracing. These departments are responsible for upholding health standards in individual establishments like hotels, restaurants and schools. They can help limit viral spread within each community through contact tracing and enforcing sanitation standards.


Nonprofits can boost contact tracing’s effectiveness by aiding in communication. For instance, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials provided nationwide training for COVID-19 contact tracing in April 2020. ASTHO is a national nonprofit organization connected with public health agencies across the country. This training helped local health facilities better understand how to implement contact tracing in their communities.

Private Entities

Many private companies have also helped improve contact tracing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Companies involved with geolocation data, cybersecurity, app development and other technology have made contact tracing quicker and more effective. In addition, private firms have improved health data quality and programs.


Universities nationwide have gotten involved with contact tracing. Schools may provide on-campus health services, including COVID-19 tests or tests for other infectious diseases. They can then alert students of contact. Since many schools function as miniature communities, this can successfully limit viral spread on college campuses.

Regardless of who performs contact tracing, these services can help stop the spread of infectious diseases. Alerting people of possible or confirmed exposure helps them take action to separate themselves from others. The sooner and broader-spread these alerts, the more effective they are.

how to get contact tracing services

How Can I Get COVID-19 Contact Tracing Services?

Contact tracing is one of the most effective ways to stop a virus from spreading. Viruses rely on their ability to jump from host to host — this is how they survive and thrive. Alerting individuals of exposure to a virus gives them a chance to isolate themselves before they can infect others. Wide-scale, fast and effective contact tracing can eradicate a virus.

Now that many workplaces are reopening, contact tracing services for employers are particularly crucial. If you’re looking for contact tracing for your workplace, consider Healthcare Resolution Services. We offer data quality and performance services for health organizations with a mission to improve overall outcomes. Reach out today to learn about our workplace contact tracing services.

Celebrating National Minority Health Month

national minority health month

April is National Minority Health Month. This initiative, led by the Office of Minority Health (OHM), is committed to improving the health of racial and ethnic minorities throughout the country through education, awareness events and critical conversations. This year, the theme of the month is shining a light on the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on racial and ethnic minorities.

The Impact of COVID-19 on Minority Communities

Studies have already been completed on the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on minority communities, and the results are alarming. The cumulative infection and death rates related to the pandemic were higher among minority groups. Minorities were also more likely to experience hospitalization as a result of their infection. Some of this is due to existing disparities and social vulnerabilities that were exploited by the devastating pandemic.

Some of the factors pinpointed through research include:

  • Discrimination throughout medical systems
  • Lower access to healthcare and higher rates of uninsured individuals
  • Working occupations that are more likely to be deemed essential, including healthcare facilities, farms, grocery stores, public transportation and factories
  • Educational, income and wealth gaps that can limit future career opportunities and make minorities more likely to hold low-paying or less stable jobs
  • Steep housing costs that lead to multigenerational households where social distancing is not possible

These factors are just some of the things that will be examined in the aftermath of the pandemic and during National Minority Health Month to ensure better health outcomes in the future.

Get #VaccineReady

Another key initiative of this year’s National Minority Health Month is encouraging communities throughout the country to be #VaccineReady. How can you prepare yourself and your community for the vaccine rollout?

  1. Familiarize yourself with how the various COVID-19 vaccines work and the differences between the most common types on the market, Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson.
  2. Read the fact sheets from the CDC talking about the symptoms you might experience after getting the vaccine, what to do if you experience them and how to report them.
  3. Talk with your doctor before getting the vaccine to discuss any concerns that you have and get more information about your risk factors.
  4. Check the convenient VaccineFinder tool from the CDC to discover vaccination sites near you.
  5. When it is your turn to get the vaccine, register as soon as possible and ensure that you schedule the second dose (if required) in a timely fashion. When we all work together, there can be great, dramatic results.

Celebrate National Minority Health Month with Healthcare Resolution Services

HealthCare Resolution Services is a professional services firm dedicated to providing healthcare industry clients with value-added consulting solutions and health information management services. From our headquarters in Columbia, MD, we provide services to practices throughout the country. To learn more about how we can optimize your business, call us today at (866) 599-4277.


Coping With Work and Stress During COVID-19

Coping With Work Stress During Covid19

The COVID-19 pandemic has been very tough on workers, whether you have been working remotely or going to the office every day. The relationship between work and stress has long endured, but stress rates have climbed over the course of the pandemic. From fear about the disease to workplace stress, it is a recipe for burnout and poor results on the job. How can you cope with work and stress during COVID-19?

Are You Feeling Stressed?

Before you can work on balancing work and stress, it’s important to recognize what you are dealing with. Some of the signs that you are experiencing high levels of stress include:

  • A lack of motivation
  • Feeling more irritated or angry than usual
  • Feeling depressed or sad
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Feeling anxious or uncertain
  • Feeling burnt out or overwhelmed
  • Trouble concentrating

A lot of these symptoms have flourished due to the unique circumstances surrounding work and stress during the pandemic. Needing to take care of at-home schooling for a child while working on your own workload, for example, can dramatically increase stress levels over time. Uncertainty about your job, work schedule and managing new technology can all also make you feel more stressed out.

How to Manage Work and Stress

  1. Communicate with your supervisors and coworkers about the best way to manage work and stress so that everyone can thrive even during difficult times. It’s also important to understand any available mental health resources that are provided to you through your workplace.
  2. Control as much as you can. Keeping a schedule is one way that you can feel like you are in control, so focus on exercising each day, keeping a regular sleep schedule, ending work around the same time every day and spending time with your loved ones safely.
  3. Do as much as possible to control your exposure to COVID-19. By staying healthy and doing your part, you can help to limit the damaging impact of work and stress during this period. Your actions do matter, even if it might not seem that way.
  4. While it’s good to have access to some information, many of us can rapidly slide into information overload. Practice taking a break from reading the news or checking social media for a few hours or days at a time. If anything really important happens, you will hear about it elsewhere. In the meantime, you can get a break.

Take Time for Yourself with Healthcare Resolution Services

HealthCare Resolution Services is a professional services firm dedicated to providing healthcare industry clients with value-added consulting solutions and health information management services. From our headquarters in Columbia, MD, we provide services to practices throughout the country. To learn more about how we can optimize your business, call us today at (866) 599-4277.


HCRS Attends The National Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Conference


HCRS Meets President Biden

Columbia, MD business owner Brenda Doles, who with her husband, built a successful government contracting business into a multimillion-dollar enterprise with 400 full-time employees.

Ms. Doles attended a White House reception on Aug. 26, 2009, during the National Minority Enterprise Development Week Conference in Washington, D.C.  Ms. Doles, a Registered Nurse of 30 years, was acknowledged by then Vice President Biden, for her service to our country. 

Founded in 1998, HCRS helps healthcare organizations improve data quality, program outcomes, and organizational performance through a suite of Health Information Management (HIM) and Health Information Technology (HIT) services that include medical coding and auditing, data abstraction, research and survey support, plus, clinical staffing services. We offer a depth and breadth of experience across the healthcare continuum that distinguishes us in the industry. Since our founding in 1998, HCRS has focused exclusively on serving the needs of public healthcare programs. In the ensuing decades, we have developed specific technologies and national best practices that are the best in class in terms of results and quality.

Our clients Department of Defense (Army, Air Force, Navy), Veterans Administration, Health and Human Services, Cigna Health Care, are just a few of our long-term clients. The spectrum is vast, diverse, and inclusive. 

HCRS is based in Columbia, Maryland, and more than 90 percent of our employees work virtually. “We have boots on the ground in nearly all 50 states. We are positioned and ready to meet the needs of our clients in any place at any time. As the principal of our company, I am committed to growing and expanding in a way that keeps us at the forefront of the health care industry.”

Interested in working with HCRS? Tell us about your organization and we can discuss how HCRS can lend the support you need to move forward. Fill out our contact form today to get started.


How HCRS Can Provide Support During the Medical Research Process

How HCRS can provide support in medical research

Medical research is the engine of innovation in healthcare. Research drives new discoveries in the ways pathogens behave, how to treat patients and how to forge a path to better healthcare. By necessity, clinical research is an exacting and exhaustive process. Each step forward needs to be supported by clinical statistics and relevant data. Medical research is accompanied by robust documentation and quality assurance processes to ensure results are accurate and replicable.

Medical researchers with academic institutions and government agencies are experts in their fields, but they have to juggle multiple demands on their time and resources. HCRS offers medical research support to help the experts do what they do best.

Data Abstraction

Medical records are an essential source of information for researchers. They can be used in various ways, often under guidance by an institutional review board (IRB). Medical records contain a wealth of data on various health conditions and approaches to treatment.

With the advent of electronic health records, these documents have become even easier to search and access. Yet, medical records remain dense. Depending on the scope of the study, researchers may be tasked with sifting through thousands upon thousands of pages to find the data relevant to their efforts. Manually searching takes a significant amount of time and resources, which are assets that are limited for researchers.

Outsourcing clinical data abstraction can help reduce the amount of time searching for data, giving researchers more time to study data and make progress in their work. HCRS has a qualified team of coders, statisticians and nurses who can examine medical records and pull out the necessary data.

For example, HCRS has provided text string coding for the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) in support of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. MEPS is a set of surveys that provide insight into healthcare utilization and cost, as well as insurance coverage. The HCRS team translated narrative data into codes for use of the surveys.

Interpret stats in medical research

Data Analysis

Clinical research support can go beyond pulling the relevant data. Once researchers have amassed the data relevant to their work, they need to make sense of it and recognize patterns. With the growing role of big data in healthcare, the sheer amount of data and the opportunities it represents are enormous. How is the data stored and organized? How is it read?

Data analysis in medical research is another time-consuming piece of the puzzle that researchers set out to solve. Statistics for medical research are complex, and analysis is a painstaking process that often takes a multidisciplinary approach. HCRS also has team members with the expertise to read, interpret and analyze this data for research projects.

HCRS has worked on a project with Truven Analytics, supporting the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Center for Health Information and Analytics (CHIA). The study was designed to compare All-Payer Claims Databases (APDCs) between states. The project involved delivering a state-by-state analysis, which CHIA could use to inform the integration of Medicare data going forward.

Provide Training

Medical research is a carefully designed process with defined protocols to ensure the quality and ethics of the work being conducted. IRBs must approve research project design and protocol before it can begin. Naturally, protocol writing in clinical research is an essential skill.

Clinical research protocol is an action plan that determines how a study will be conducted. Typically, a chief researcher is the central figure in establishing a clinical research protocol, but medical studies usually involve a team of people. Postgraduates and researchers who are new to the field may be a part of the team. Seasoned researchers need the support of team members like this, but they may not have the bandwidth to teach them the ins and outs of creating research protocols and writing a research proposal.

Improper documentation and poorly written proposals can cause delays in the research process. Researchers want their full team up to speed as quickly as possible to avoid those potential errors. Mistakes made in the clinical protocol process can lead to issues during IRB review. HCRS provides training on research protocols to help everyone on the team be prepared to write clear, effective protocols that are ready for IRB review.

We also work with our clients to provide project management training. Medical research has many different moving parts. It is essential that members of the clinical research team are prepared to manage the different elements of a project, keeping it on-time and on-budget.

Provide Experience and Expertise

At HCRS, we understand the importance of quality assurance in clinical research. We have been providing clinical research support for decades, which means we have extensive experience working with the strict government protocols that dictate the research process. Even small errors can lead to research being disqualified. All of the hard work poured into a project can go to waste without careful adherence to research protocols.

Our team provides exhaustive quality assurance and training to help your team through every step of the research process. With the right support, you can be assured your hard work will meet the necessary requirements and make the hoped for contribution to medical research.

HCRS has built its experience in part through serving as a principal investigator. Principal investigators are the cornerstone of effective clinical research. This role is responsible for the overall management of a clinical research project, carefully monitoring the design of the project and its execution. All of the work a principal investigator does is within rigorous government, organizational and institutional standards. In this role, HCRS has been the leader guiding research from start to finish.

Our experience and expertise help to guide our clients and assure them they have the support they need to complete their research. No matter where we lend our support, we have years of experience backing our service.

HCRS Can Support Your Medical Research

Medical research is essential to our future. No matter your project, we can help. HCRS offers support through data abstraction and analysis, medical coding and auditing, and project management. We have helped support organizations like IMPAQ International, Advanta Healthcare Partners, Truven Analytics and RTI International. If you want to outsource healthcare research support, we have the expertise and the track record to work with you.

Tell us about your organization and your research project, and we can talk about how we can lend the support you need to move forward. Fill out our contact form today to get started.

HCRS can support your medical research

Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC)

The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification, or the CMMC, is a verification program that ensures defense contractors for the United States Department of Defense (DoD) are capable and ready in the area of cybersecurity. CMMC requirements ensure your cybersecurity controls and processes can adequately protect the sensitive information you have access to.

At HCRS, one service we offer is preparing and guiding DoD suppliers seeking to get certified and stay compliant with the CMMC. We have been working with a variety of governmental bodies for over 20 years, and we have the experience to help businesses small and large navigate working with the government.

If your business needs help getting ready for the CMMC certification, don’t get confused by industry lingo, IT talk or multiple maturity levels. HCRS will give it to you straight — from one small business contractor to another.

What Is the CMMC Certification?

Companies that want to work with the U.S. DoD will need to meet the CMMC requirements to bid on contracts. The first version of the much-anticipated Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification was released in January 2020. This unified standard ensures all contractors are up to the task of executing cybersecurity across the defense industrial base (DIB).

In years past, companies working for the DoD were responsible for their own security technology, as well as sensitive DoD information that happened to be stored or transmitted on their systems. However, this system sometimes resulted in serious compromises and information leaks. The CMMC requires third-party assessment of contractors to ensure:

  • Compliance with mandatory practices and procedures.
  • Adequate cybersecurity capabilities.
  • The ability to adapt to new and evolving cyber threats.

The CMMC Framework

The CMMC has five established certification levels. Each level builds upon the one before to reflect the maturity and reliability of a company’s cybersecurity infrastructure. These technical requirements ensure a company can safeguard sensitive DoD information stored or transmitted on the contractors’ system. For your company to be considered compliant, you must meet each level’s requirements and implement specific cybersecurity-based practices.

  • Level 1: Basic cyber hygiene practices, such as regularly changing passwords and using antivirus software to safeguard Federal Contract Information (FCI), or information not intended for public release.
  • Level 2: Intermediate cyber hygiene practices and implemented security requirements to protect any Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) or unclassified information that requires safeguarding.
  • Level 3: Good cyber hygiene practices and implemented security requirements to safeguard CUI.
  • Level 4: Established enhanced practices to detect and respond to the changing tactics and techniques of advanced persistent threats (APTs).
  • Level 5: Optimized processes, enhanced practices and sophisticated capabilities to detect and respond to APTs.

Who Must Comply With the CMMC?

The CMMC certification will eventually be required by any DoD contractors or companies doing business with the U.S. government in any capacity. This includes:

  • All suppliers.
  • Small businesses.
  • Commercial item contractors.
  • Foreign suppliers.

Get CMMC Ready Today

HCRS is not an auditing company, and we do not grant certification. Rather, our goal is to guide your company through the CMMC certification process. We have been working and cooperating with government agencies for over 20 years, and we are a Registered Provider Organization (RPO). You will get the experience and information you need without confusing lingo or IT terms to get in the way — preparing your company for the CMMC in a way that’s not confusing or intimidating.

Let us help guide you through the CMMC framework and get your company ready for the certification process. Contact us today to learn more.

HCRS Teams Win Places on Government-Wide IT Contracting Vehicles


A Government-Wide Acquisition Contract (GWAC) offers all Federal agencies a streamlined and cost-effective way to purchase Information Technology (IT) services. The two CIO-SP3 GWACs (Chief Information Officer-Solutions and Partners 3) — one for unrestricted procurement (any size business) and one small business version to help agencies reach socioeconomic goals — are 10-year contracts administered on an all-agency basis by NITAAC, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Information Technology Acquisition and Assessment Center. CIO-SP3 allows expedited acquisition of health and biomedical related IT services to meet Federal defense and civilian agencies’ scientific, health, administrative, operational managerial, and information management requirements. CIO-SP3 also contains general IT services, because medical systems are increasingly integrated within a broad IT architecture, requiring a systems approach to their implementation.

Many health information management and program integrity services can be obtained through the CIO-SP3 vehicle. HCRS is a subcontractor to one unrestricted and two small business contractors.

  • Xerox is our unrestricted (large business) prime contractor for CIOSP-3. Xerox is a growing presence in the Federal IT space, with contracts with some 25 agencies.
  • Paragon is a small business offering logistics, integrated governance, advanced technology and data management services to health, science, other civilian and defense agencies.
  • SCSJV is a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Joint Venture, a group of innovative, stable and fiscally responsible, agile and price-sensitive companies, primarily small (85%) and committed to staying together throughout the life of CIO-SP3.

CALL US to find out how to leverage CIO-SP3 to meet your health information management and other IT needs!

HCRS Principal Addresses Small Businesses on Successful Federal Sub-Contracting

“Focus on your company’s uniqueness and understand that the secret ingredient is YOU, and you will succeed as a Federal subcontractor,” HCRS Principal Brenda Doles, RN, MBA told an audience of about 100 Philadelphia area small business owners recently. The event was one of a series of community outreach events sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) to encourage more small business participation in Federal contracting. At the Philadelphia event, the emphasis was on how to find, win and carry out subcontracting opportunities, from both the prime’s and the subcontractor’s perspectives. HCRS and one of its prime contractors, RTI International, presented each side of the story.

Ms. Doles pointed out that subcontracting has several advantages to small businesses as an introduction to the Federal marketplace. For example, she noted, subcontracting can shortcut the typical government sales cycle of 18 months. Regulations for market entry as a subcontractor are less stringent than those for primes. Mentor/Protégé arrangements (both formal and informal) can facilitate teaming and help new small businesses gain “past performance” that will help them win more business. Her advice to small businesses on how to win contracts? “Identify your target client. Know your client and do your homework. Plan. Be prepared. Seize the moment. Be flexible and expect the unexpected. Most important, have a passion for what you do.”