News

Tricare changes begin Jan. 1


By Jeanine Mezei, MEDDAC PAO
Friday, December 08, 2017 at 12:31 PM

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Changes to your TRICARE benefit will begin Jan. 1, 2018, in an effort to give beneficiaries a wider range of choices and improve access to care.

While TRICARE For Life enrollees are not affected by the upcoming changes, it is important to note TRICARE Standard will change.

“In order for a smooth transition in January, it is up to our beneficiaries to take command of their healthcare,” said Col. Patrick M. Garman, Evans Army Community Hospital commander.

TRICARE Standard will become TRICARE Select, a self-managed, preferred provider network option. Select members will not be required to have a primary care manager (PCM) and therefore you can visit any TRICARE-authorized provider for services covered by TRICARE without a referral. TRICARE Prime will remain the same, a managed care program option where enrollees are assigned a primary care manager for most of their healthcare and do not pay anything when referred to a network provider.

All current TRICARE beneficiaries will be automatically enrolled in their respective plan on Jan. 1. Future beneficiaries, or beneficiaries wishing to change their TRICARE plan, must proactively change their enrollment during enrollment-eligibility periods. Next year is an open enrollment year so beneficiaries can make the best decisions for their family’s coverage throughout the year.

In addition, the current three regions consisting of North, South and West, will become two regions, East and West. There will be new regional contractors for the East and West regions. Health Net Federal Services, LLC, will manage the West Region and Humana Military will manage the East Region.

“These changes will be transparent for those who receive medical care at Evans Army Community Hospital,” said Garman. “Our patients will still receive the same high-quality care.”

EACH has formed a team of TRICARE specialists here to help educate beneficiaries on the best ways to get ahead of the changes, to include registering for a DS Logon and verifying their DEERS enrollment. Local questions regarding TRICARE changes can visit beneficiary counselors at EACH, located in the Patient Advocacy Office near the main entrance or call (719) 526-7225.

“Evans is here for you,” said Capt. Tiara Walz, the TRICARE contract liaison officer at EACH. “It is also imperative beneficiaries take ownership of their healthcare and understand all it can be for them.”

Beneficiaries are urged to visit the TRICARE Changes page at www.tricare.mil/changes, where they can sign up for email alerts, complete a beneficiary checklist, and see available plans and updated costs for 2018.

They can also prepare for the upcoming changes now by signing up for a DS Logon at https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/identitymanagement and update their personal information in DEERS at https://tricare.mil/Plans/Eligibility/DEERS.


Tags: Beneficiaries , Garman , Insurance , TRICARE

By Jeanine Mezei at 12:31 PM