Before You Move
Take action to head off the problem(s) moving may cause. First, plan ahead as much as possible, especially if you or a family member have a special medical need, are in the midst of treatment or therapy for an illness or condition, or have a chronic condition that requires ongoing attention by a physician.
Make Appointments for:
If given the time, schedule any yearly check-ups still remaining, such as a mammogram. Make a routine appointment for you or family members with the doctor if there are any lingering medical issues. It is best to have the issue dealt with before moving. Remember, however, that TRICARE only covers certain preventive exams once a year, so be mindful of scheduling so you do not have to pay out of pocket. If you are moving with school-age children, it may be helpful to have the required school physicals done prior to moving. You can request the receiving schools’ physical forms and have your current child’s doctor fill out the forms. This will save you time and potential headaches once you arrive to your new duty station.
If you or a family member are seeing a specialist for an ongoing medical condition, make sure you schedule an appointment with that provider. This will allow you an opportunity to discuss and plan with the specialist on how your care will continue after you have relocated. Work with the military facility or the TRICARE contractor where you will be moving to begin the process of transferring your care so you can start quickly with your new provider once you have moved.
Case managed care
If you or a family member have been assigned a case manager by your TRICARE Regional contractor or if you or a family member have special medical needs, give your case manager a call as soon as you learn you will be moving. Your conversation should include making arrangements for receiving care in your current location to get you ready for transfer and establishing the continuation of care once you have moved to your new location.
During any medical visits as you prepare to move, ask your doctor to write a prescription for any medication(s) needing renewal to fill at your new duty station. This is also a good time to have all of your family’s medications refilled to cover you and your family during the upcoming move. Ask the doctor how much medication you will need.
If you have been receiving your medications via the TRICARE Mail Order Pharmacy (TMOP), you will need to let Express-Scripts, Inc. know you will be moving. They can help make sure you have enough medication during the move. Contact the Customer Service phone number at 1.877.363.1303 and advise the Patient Care Advocate when you will be moving and request to have all of your medications processed and mailed prior to that date. This way you will make sure you have enough medication with you while you are moving. If you are planning on living at a temporary address, Express-Scripts, Inc. can designate your account with a specific time frame that has an effective date and end date. Provide your new address and phone number, if you already know it. Even though all family members are under the same Sponsor’s ID number, each eligible beneficiary must have their address and phone number changed to the new address on their individual TMOP account. For the overseas beneficiaries, please dial the in-country access code listed here. TDD/Hearing Impaired, please contact 1.877.540.6261.
If the situation arises where you need additional medication during your move, contact the Customer Service phone number 1.877.363.1303. Express-Scripts, Inc. has an available override request feature to ensure you are not without your medications. For additional information you can go to their website: www.express-scripts.com/TRICARE.
STAY enrolled in your current TRICARE Region
It is very important if you are enrolled in TRICARE Prime, NOT to disenroll from TRICARE Prime before you move. The time to officially change your doctor will be after you arrive at your new duty station’s location. Staying enrolled will provide you continued coverage under TRICARE Prime. Disenrolling still provides you with medical coverage, but changes your status within TRICARE to TRICARE Standard. This may result in higher than expected out-of-pocket expenses. Also, it is important for retirees to know there is a Department of Defense TRICARE rule that will take effect when you disenroll from TRICARE Prime. Once placed into a TRICARE Standard benefit, retirees and their family members will be subject to a 12-month waiting period before they can enroll in TRICARE Prime again.
It is important for you to relocate with your medical records. There are several ways to do this. If the medical records are located at a military hospital or clinic, you have three choices: take copies with you, ask your current hospital to transfer your records to the receiving facility, or request a records transfer once you arrived at your new duty station.
Until military families are relieved of the weight of war, we hope you will continue to contribute to their wellbeing.
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