Editor’s Note: This article is part of MOAA’s 2023-24 TRICARE Guide, brought to you by MOAA Insurance Plans, administered by Association Member Benefits Advisors (AMBA). A version of the guide appeared in the November 2023 issue of Military Officer magazine.
Military Health System (MHS) reforms have spared Medicare-eligible beneficiaries on TRICARE For Life (TFL) but only because MOAA and other military and veterans service organizations, together with critical grassroots support from our members, defeated several consecutive TFL enrollment fee proposals from FY 2013-17.
MOAA needs your help to protect the TRICARE benefit. We must be poised to fight threats to TRICARE, but only about 20,000 of MOAA’s 360,000 members are registered advocates in our Legislative Action Center, which allows you to send pre-written letters to your members of Congress with just a couple of clicks.
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Please help us amplify MOAA’s voice on Capitol Hill by signing up and participating in our legislative action campaigns.
How serious are the threats? While Congress has not proposed TRICARE fee increases for the past few years, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) recently resurfaced the concept of TFL fees in their biennial report to Congress on options for reducing the federal deficit.
CBO concepts include:
- Implement TFL enrollment fees that would cost Medicare-age beneficiaries $575 a year for individual coverage or $1,150 for family coverage.
- Cost-sharing measures would include an $850 deductible, meaning TFL would not cover any of the first $850 of a beneficiary’s Medicare cost sharing.
- After the deductible, CBO’s cost-sharing plan allows TFL to cover only 50% of the next $7,650 in Medicare cost sharing, meaning beneficiaries would pay up to $4,675 in cost sharing a year.
These are just options presented by CBO — not legislative proposals — but CBO recently highlighted TFL fee concepts in a written statement for a Senate Armed Services Personnel Subcommittee hearing, raising concerns these ideas could gain traction.
Signing up with MOAA’s Legislative Action Center will prepare you to fight threats to the TRICARE benefit and help prevent TRICARE fee increase concepts from taking hold on Capitol Hill.
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