TRICARE Announces Policies for Katrina-Displaced Beneficiaries
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Sept. 13, 2005 Military evacuees displaced by Hurricane Katrina may request that their prescription records at military treatment facilities in the Gulf Coast region be transferred to other military or retail pharmacies nationwide, officials with Tricare, the DoD agency that administers the health plan for the uniformed services, announced Sept. 12.
With this policy, displaced beneficiaries who have and need available refills won't have to see a primary-care manager to have their prescriptions rewritten, officials said. Also, through Sept. 14, Tricare will waive the pharmacy co-pay requirement for beneficiaries affected by the hurricane who are unable to pay it.
Tricare is working closely with retail pharmacies to ensure that military evacuees continue to have access to their pharmacy benefits, officials said. For example, victims sheltered in and around Houston can now fill their prescriptions at a commercial CVS pharmacy recently set up at the Astrodome. This newly established facility is now one of many retail pharmacies in the national Tricare pharmacy network, officials said.
Displaced beneficiaries who previously ordered their prescriptions through Tricare's mail-order pharmacy may now request their prescriptions from retail pharmacies if they are unable to receive them by mail, officials said. For those relocating to areas where postal service is still available, Express Scripts International, Tricare's pharmacy contractor, is updating patient information to include temporary mailing addresses so prescriptions will reach the beneficiaries at their new location.
For assistance, hurricane victims can call Tricare at 1-866-275-4732. They may also contact Express Scripts International at the following phone numbers:
- Mail order pharmacy program: 1-866-363-8667 (1-866-DOD-TMOP)
- Retail pharmacy program, 1-866-363-8779 (1-866-DOD-TRRX)
Displaced beneficiaries can also call 1-800-444-5445 for more information. The Tricare Web site also includes important information for displaced or affected beneficiaries.
Tricare beneficiaries may also contact beneficiary counseling and assistance coordinators, debt collection assistance officers, Tricare service centers and family-support representatives at local military installations for information and assistance.
Anther resource available to active-duty military personnel and their families is Military One Source at 1-800-342-9647.
(Based on a Tricare news release.)