Enrolling a New Family Member in TRICARE

Did you know that as of 1 April 2014, the TRICARE Service Center located in the 28th Medical Group no longer provides walk-in customer service?

Today during our Bundles to Babies we had a question about the closure of the service center and how families can register new family members in TRICARE. Here is what we found.

Children are covered by TRICARE Prime for 60 days as long as one other family member is enrolled.  Here are the steps to keep your child enrolled after the first 60 days:

Most importantly, register your newborn or adopted child in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). Registering your child in DEERS is separate from enrolling your child in any health plan option and is the first step to ensuring your child is eligible for benefits. (You don’t need a Social Security number to register your child in DEERS. Once you have one, update DEERS with that information.)

There are then three ways that you can add your new family member to your TRICARE:

  1. Call our regional TRICARE contractor. Ellsworth AFB is in the West Region and so theTRICARE Regional Contractor is United Health Care Military & Veterans. Their phone number is 1-877-988-9378 (WEST).
  2. Add your child to your existing plan online by going to the United Health Care Military & Veterans website: http://www.uhcmilitarywest.com/ and fill out a profile for your family, then add your baby to the existing plan online at https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/appj/bwe/indexAction.do;jsessionid=CWI98W8nyS7pxoE-Hs2xtsTalEnPxp7Jlb-VFwrhr0awzKLNvRRz!-953372071 or
  3. Send an enrollment form to the regional contractor.

For more information you can go to http://www.tricare.mil/ and search for “Life Events”, then selecting “Having a Baby or adopting.”

What health care decision means for Tricare

The Supreme Court’s decision Thursday upholding the Affordable Care Act has little impact on Tricare beneficiaries, who will see no change to their benefits.

The ruling, which upholds the individual mandate under the government’s right to tax, will have no impact on Tricare customers because the program not only was omitted from the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, it later was protected under separate legislation.

The Tricare Affirmation Act was signed in 2010 to quell concerns about health care reform among Tricare users after the Affordable Care Act passed.

The 2010 act explicitly stated that Tricare beneficiaries and Defense Department civilian nonappropriated fund employees were not subject to the penalties for lacking private insurance that are part of the broader law.

Additional legislation, the Tricare Dependent Coverage Extension Act, created Tricare Young Adult (TYA), a premium-based program that extends health benefits for adult children of Tricare beneficiaries. TYA is…

Read the full story on the Air Force Times web site: What health care decision means for Tricare – Air Force Times.