Tricare Pharmacy Co-Pays to Increase Feb. 1

Mario Blount, pharmacy technician, verifies prescription labels at the David Grant USAF Medical center pharmacy. (Photo: U.S. Air Force/ Staff Sgt. Liliana Moreno)

A set of prescription drug price increases will hit Tricare users Feb. 1 as fee changes passed by Congress last year take effect.

Currently, a 30-day supply of a generic drug at an in-network retail pharmacy costs $8, while brand-name drugs cost $20. Brand-name drugs received through the Tricare mail-order pharmacy currently cost $16 for an up to 90-day supply.

Under the new fee structure, however, a 30-day supply of generic drugs at an in-network retail pharmacy will increase by $2 to $10, while the same supply of a brand-name drug will increase to $24. The price for an up to 90-day supply of a brand-name drug by mail will increase by $4 to $20.

Prescriptions filled at military pharmacies and generic drugs received by mail will continue to be free.

The co-pay increases were included in the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act. The increase size was a major sticking point in passing the legislation, which included funding guidance for all Defense Department programs. 

The price increases comes on the heels of an Oct. 1 rule change that requires Tricare users to fill brand-name medications used to treat chronic conditions by mail or through a military pharmacy -- or pay for them out of pocket.

(For information on how to switch your medication to the Tricare mail order pharmacy, read this article on's Spousebuzz blog.)

-- Amy Bushatz can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at @AmyBushatz.

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