9/25/2009 - VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- One great thing about TRICARE coverage is it not only extends to spouses and children, but in some cases, also climbs up your family tree to dependent parents and parents-in-law.
The process to register parents or parents-in-law as dependents varies by branch of service. The best way to get started is by visiting your local identification card-issuing facility and asking for help to register a dependent parent.
After your parents' dependent status is confirmed, they will be eligible to receive a military ID card. This ID card is required for your parent to access care at a military treatment facility through TRICARE benefits.
Once they receive an ID card, there are a few things to keep in mind when accessing care for dependent parents:
· Dependent parents and dependent parents-in-law receive care at a military treatment facility on a space-available basis. This means they may not be able to secure an appointment when the facility does not have available capacity.
· Dependent parents and parents-in-law are not eligible for TRICARE outside of the MTF. Any claim submitted to TRICARE for care received outside the MTF will be denied.
· Dependent parents and parents-in-law are not eligible for TRICARE pharmacy benefits outside of the military treatment facility nor can they use TRICARE's Express Scripts pharmacy benefit in the civilian sector.
· Because they are not eligible for TRICARE outside the military treatment facility, any care received from a civilian provider must be covered by another form of insurance.
Remember, dependent parents and parents-in-law are not eligible for TRICARE Prime, TRICARE Standard or Extra or TRICARE for Life. They may only access care at a military treatment facility to be covered by their sponsor's TRICARE benefit.
For additional information on dependent parent coverage, visit TRICARE's Dependent Parents page or contact a TriWest representative at 1-888-TRIWEST (1-888-874-9378).