Tricare Open Season Now Underway

Tricare Open Season Now Underway

Eye exam
Photo by: U.S. Army/Marcy Sanchez

Retirees and eligible beneficiaries who use Tricare can now enroll in or make changes to their health care coverage.

Tricare open season began Nov. 9 and will run through Dec. 14. During this time, beneficiaries who use Tricare Prime or Tricare Select can make changes as needed. Any enrollments or changes go into effect Jan. 1.

This year, some retirees who use Tricare Select must take action to make sure they don’t lose health care coverage in the new year. 

Group A retirees, whose initial enlistment or appointment occurred before Jan. 1, 2018, and their beneficiaries must now pay monthly enrollment fees for Tricare Select coverage. Mandated in the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, this marks the first time this group of beneficiaries will be charged such fees.

Those affected by this change must set up a monthly allotment through their DoD pay center or via electronic funds transfer, credit card or debit card. Tricare is encouraging beneficiaries to set up their payments as soon as possible. 

Beneficiaries can be disenrolled from Tricare Select if they fail to pay enrollment fees by Jan. 1, according to Tricare. If that happens, beneficiaries have 180 days from their last paid through date to request reinstatement.

Individual enrollment fees are $12.50 a month or $150 a year. Retirees on a family plan pay $25 a month or $300 a year. Enrollment fees are waived for active-duty family members, survivors or medically retired retirees or family members, according to Tricare.

Additionally, the catastrophic cap will increase from $3,000 to $3,500; the enrollment fees will apply toward the catastrophic cap.

Eligible beneficiaries also have until Dec. 14 to enroll in vision and/or dental coverage through the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program. The program offers a range of plans at varying costs, and coverage is not automatic, so beneficiaries must act to enroll in a dental or vision plan.

For more information on Tricare open season, click here.

For more on the Tricare Select monthly enrollment fees, click here.