You’ve probably noticed that your TRICARE prescription coverage co-pays increased this year. How much your costs increased is dependent on the type of prescription drug and how you fill it. Here are the price increases for TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery and TRICARE retail network pharmacies:
- Generic formulary drugs filled through TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery have increased $2, from $10 to $12.
- Generic formulary drugs filled through TRICARE retail network pharmacies have increased $1, from $13 to $14.
- Brand-name formulary drugs filled through TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery have increased $5, from $29 to $34.
- Brand-name formulary drugs filled through TRICARE retail network pharmacies have increased $5, from $33 to $38.
- Non-formulary drugs filled through TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery have increased $8, from $60 to $68.
- Non-formulary drugs filled through TRICARE retail network pharmacies have increased $8, from $60 to $68.
The History Behind the Changes
So why did these increases happen? The changes are not due to inflation. They were included as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018. According to Teisha Robertson, the U.S Public Health Service Commander, these price hikes were include to “help fund improvements in military readiness and modernize the TRICARE health care benefit.” Although price increases for upcoming years have not been formally announced at this time, it seems likely that there will be more in the future.
What Can I Do About This?
For anyone worried about these cost increases, a TRICARE Supplement may help. TRICARE Supplement plans are designed to wrap around TRICARE plans. You have to pay the premium and deductible, but after that, the TRICARE Supplement plan can pay for up to 100% of the additional costs that the TRICARE plan leaves behind, including prescription co-pays.
If your family expects to have high prescription costs in the coming year, a TRICARE Supplement plan may make sense. Even if you don’t think you’ll need expensive prescriptions, a TRICARE Supplement plan may be worthwhile. This is because medical costs can be unpredictable. You never know when an illness or injury will strike, and when it happens, the out-of-pocket costs can be significant. A TRICARE Supplement plan makes your costs predictable, so you never have to lose sleep over the what-ifs.
TRICARE Supplement plans are fully portable, meaning you can keep them even if you change jobs. If you meet the following three criteria, you are eligible to enroll in a TRICARE Supplement plan:
- You are enrolled in a TRICARE plan.
- You are not on active duty.
- You are not eligible for Medicare.
Watch this video to learn more or apply for a TRICARE Supplement plan.