MOAA continues to make progress toward pharmacy copay relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sens. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) have introduced the TRICARE Prescription Relief Act, which would authorize DoD to waive TRICARE prescription copays during national or public health emergencies.
The bill, S. 3979, would give DoD flexibility to provide relief from retail and/or mail-order prescription copays for beneficiaries unable to visit military treatment facility (MTF) pharmacies for zero copay medications.
[TAKE ACTION: Ask Your Lawmaker to Support S. 3979]
It authorizes DoD to waive pharmacy cost-sharing requirements after considering whether the waiver would increase affordability of alternatives to MTF pharmacies, promote prescription adherence, or facilitate the government response to a covered emergency.
A similar bill, H.R. 6573, the Help Our Heroes Access Medicine Act, was introduced in the House earlier this year.
MOAA is urging Congress to address this issue with the FY 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). During a livestream of the Senate Armed Services Committee Personnel subcommittee mark, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), the committee’s ranking member, indicated the subcommittee’s NDAA mark would include a provision authorizing DoD to waive copays during national emergencies. Providing DoD with this flexibility is critical in allowing TRICARE policy to quickly adapt in unexpected situations.
Please join MOAA’s efforts by encouraging your senators to support the TRICARE Prescription Relief Act.