Survey Shows Tricare Users Satisfied with Care, Officers Group Says

A recent survey of more than 30,000 Tricare users shows the great majority to be satisfied with the quality of care they receive. Lawmakers are planning to overhaul the program in fiscal 2017. (DoD photo)
A recent survey of more than 30,000 Tricare users shows the great majority to be satisfied with the quality of care they receive. Lawmakers are planning to overhaul the program in fiscal 2017. (DoD photo)

Users of the military’s Tricare health-care system are overall satisfied with the quality of care they receive, doctor choices and cost, according to the results of a recent survey.

The survey, conducted by the Military Officers Association of America, an advocacy group based in Alexandria, Va., polled over 30,000 respondents, according to a blog post by officials with the organization. Of the users of Tricare Prime -- which offers fewer out-of-pocket costs than Tricare Standard and Extra but less freedom of choice for providers -- 81 percent said they were satisfied with care quality, according to the survey. Meanwhile, 80 percent said they were satisfied with cost and 62 percent said they are satisfied with their ability to pick a doctor, it showed.

Of Tricare Standard users, 86 percent said they were satisfied with their care quality, 68 percent said they were satisfied with cost, and 81 percent said they were satisfied with their ability to pick a doctor, according to the survey.

Among the elderly Tricare for Life users, all of whom are older than 65, 95 percent said they were satisfied with their quality of care, 86 percent said they were satisfied with cost and 90 percent said they were satisfied with their ability to pick a doctor.

Lawmakers have pledged to overhaul the health care program in fiscal 2017, which begins Oct. 1.

As part of its proposed budget for the current fiscal year, the Pentagon proposed consolidating the three Tricare plans into one, though Congress didn’t approve the plan and instead focused on passing changes to the military retirement system for future serving troops.

Instead, lawmakers approved modest increases to prescription drug prices and enrollment fees for some users, as well as an expansion of coverage.

--Amy Bushatz can be reached at amy.bushatz@military.com. Follow her on Twitter at @amybushatz.

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