Family Matters Blog: TRICARE Remains Intact for Japan-based Beneficiaries
By Elaine Sanchez
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, March 24, 2011 I wanted to pass on some information regarding health care benefits as well as some contact numbers for TRICARE military health plan beneficiaries affected by the situation in Japan.
First, TRICARE Management Activity officials would like to reassure beneficiaries that their health care benefits remain intact, even if they relocate.
Overseas Program Prime beneficiaries may still access their benefit, and retirees and beneficiaries who are not command-sponsored will continue to have the Standard benefit, officials said.
If emergency care is needed, beneficiaries should go to the nearest emergency care facility. After receiving care, Prime enrollees should call the TRICARE Overseas Program call center at 1-877-451-8659 the next business day.
For urgent, routine or specialty care, those enrolled in Overseas Prime who have relocated near a military treatment facility may contact that facility for appointments. In other areas, beneficiaries should contact the call center to arrange care.
Overseas Prime beneficiaries needing replacement or refill medications may contact any military treatment facility. The TRICARE Pharmacy Operations Center at 1-866-275-4732 can assist those needing to fill prescriptions from network pharmacies.
The TRICARE Assistance Program and Military OneSource have counselors available to help people with stress-related issues. You also can call Military OneSource at 1-800-342-9647.
TRICARE is providing ongoing updates on the situation in Japan on its website.
In part, the site has the following advice for people participating in the military-assisted departure from Japan:
-- You do not need to transfer your enrollment to your temporary location. The military treatment facility at your destination may register you so you can access care, but a new enrollment is not necessary. Please contact International SOS at the numbers listed below if you have any questions about enrollments.
-- If you are temporarily located in another region -- overseas or United States, -- you are not required to update your personal information in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System. However, if you do decide to permanently relocate, you should update DEERS immediately.
-- If your new location is near an military treatment facility, you may contact the MTF to obtain care. To locate an MTF, visit www.tricare.mil/mtf. In other locations, contact International SOS at the numbers listed below.
For Information and Assistance:
If you’ve already relocated to the United States, call International SOS at 1-877-451-8659 (toll-free in the U.S.)
If you have not left Japan and are having trouble contacting your local TRICARE Service Center, call one of the following TOP Regional Call Centers:
Singapore: Call +65-6339-2676, press option #1, or email email@example.com
Japan Toll-Free: Call 0120-983990, press option #1
If you are in any other overseas location and need medical assistance, click here for country-specific toll-free numbers.
TRICARE offers several ways to connect regarding health care including an e-mail subscription, Facebook and Twitter.
If you have a health care question or comment, don’t hesitate to contact TRICARE or submit a comment to Family Matters.