Tricare telehealth appointments give Tricare beneficiaries a convenient way to access health care, doctors, medical advice and treatment from home or wherever they are. Using secure web portals and technology, telehealth saves users the hassle of going to a doctor's office, dealing with a commute or waiting room, taking time off work or away from their family, or any other stress that comes from visiting a physical location.
First added to Tricare benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic, Tricare telehealth appointments are here to stay for most Tricare users. And while not every type of appointment or therapy is available via telehealth, many are.
Available services depend on where you are physically located.
Does Tricare Cover Telehealth?
As of 2022, Tricare covers telehealth services for most Tricare users. Originally put in place as a free temporary allowance during the COVID-19 pandemic, Tricare officials announced in July 2022 that telehealth would be a permanent benefit, but carry cost shares just like any other service. Users are charged cost shares for telehealth services received after Sept. 5, 2022.
The cost shares for telehealth appointments are identical as those for in-person visits of the same kind, but just what they are depends on what Tricare plan you are using. For example, active-duty Tricare Prime users pay no cost share for urgent care visits at an in-network provider, while those on Tricare Select pay $24 per visit.
Tricare Telehealth coverage is not available for Tricare for Life users. Tricare Overseas users should call their regional Tricare center for information on whether telehealth is permitted in their host country.
Active-duty users are required to get a referral for most types of telehealth visits.
Tricare Mental Telehealth Coverage
Tricare's telehealth coverage also extends to mental health appointments. Mental telehealth appointments can be especially convenient for users participating in talk therapy, because there are no labs or vitals to take or submit. And users may be more comfortable and have an easier time accessing mental health appointments from their own homes or spaces.
While your current therapist licensed in the state in which you are receiving services might also be covered by Tricare as a telehealth provider, users in Tricare East and Tricare West also can access telehealth mental health services through several different providers such as Telemynd. Just what types of mental health support services are available will depend on where you live.
Tricare East Telehealth
Tricare East, managed by Humana Military, allows telehealth coverage for a variety of needs through several different services.
Doctor on Demand is a telehealth provider that can address and treat a wide variety of problems, including many conditions that would typically send a patient to an urgent care center. Doctor on Demand also offers mental health services and chronic care management for issues like thyroid, high cholesterol and diabetes, according to its website. Doctor on Demand is available in all Tricare East locations. Learn more about Doctor on Demand for Tricare East.
Telemynd offers mental health support, including psychiatry telehealth in many locations. Unlike other types of specialists, Tricare Prime users don't need a referral to get mental health help through Telemynd or any other in-network, mental health provider. Visit Telemynd Tricare East's website.
SimpliFed offers telehealth breastfeeding and baby feeding support. The service provides education classes and up to six one-on-one appointments. Unlike other types of care, active-duty troops can use SimpliFed without a referral. Service availability may depend on location. Visit SimpliFed's Tricare page.
Tricare West Telehealth
Tricare West, managed by Health Net Federal Services, provides a wide variety of telehealth options for beneficiaries. Some services, however, are available in only a few states.
Doctor on Demand also provides a variety of urgent care, chronic care and mental health services for the Tricare West region. Doctor on Demand is available in all Tricare West locations. Learn more about Doctor on Demand for Tricare West.
TeamHealth VirtualCare is an telehealth urgent care option available to some Tricare West users. This urgent care service can address a variety of issues, including flu symptoms and sexual health, according to its website. This service is available only in California and Colorado. Visit TeamHealth Virtual Care.
Telemynd offers mental health help, including psychiatry telehealth in most West Region states. Tricare Prime users don't need a referral for mental health appointments. Telemynd's psychiatry appointments are not available in Alaska, Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Utah or Wyoming, according to Health Net. Visit Telemynd for Tricare West.
HealthLinkNow is a mental health provider network that serves some Tricare West users. The service provides a variety of mental health support options, including psychiatry. It is available only to users in Arizona, California, Nevada, Texas and Washington. Visit HealthLinkNow's website.
SimpliFed offers telehealth breastfeeding and baby feeding support. Both active-duty service members and military family members can access education classes and up to six one-on-one appointments. SimpliFed is not available in New Mexico or Oregon. Visit SimpliFed's Tricare page.
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