Military Advantage

Update to TRICARE Changes for 2014

Here are the first round of TRICARE changes for 2014: TRICARE to start billing patients for some lab fees TRICARE beneficiaries soon will have to pay out of pocket for diagnostic genetic tests that the Defense Health Agency doesn't view as appropriate or medically necessary. According to a report by Tom Philpott, TRICARE stopped reimbursing clinical laboratories for more than 100 different genetic or "molecular pathology" tests in January 2013. Philpott reports that beneficiaries haven't complained yet because the laboratories impacted are still providing the tests that physicians order at no charge. To date, labs have provided about $10 million worth of free tests to TRICARE users. Read the full article on Military.com.   TRICARE to close stateside customer service centers TRICARE officials recently confirmed that all stateside TRICARE in-person service centers will be closing April 1. The closure of the 189 TRICARE Service Centers, which handle about 137,000 visitors a month, are staffed by contractors and handle issues ranging from processing provider changes to billing problems. Military.com is reporting that officials expect the closures save the Defense Department about $50 million a year. According to DoD officials, All of the services currently dealt with by service center staff can be currently handled exclusively over the phone, they said. Officials don't plan to add any staff to call centers as a result of the closures since shuttering the service centers is anticipated to only marginally increase call center volume, officials said. Read the rest of the story on Military.com.

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