Health & Safety

May 4, 2012

Some Reserve, Guard members must pay dental premiums directly

Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Beginning in May, some National Guard and reserve members will need to pay dental premiums directly rather than through payroll deduction, stated a senior official of the TRICARE military health plan.

A change to the TRICARE Dental Program means that payroll deduction for premiums is not currently available to about 8,000 reserve-component troops who are on orders to active duty for more than 30 days, Army Brig. Gen. W. Bryan Gamble, deputy director of TRICARE Management Activity, told American Forces Press Service.

Gamble said affected beneficiaries have been identified and will not lose coverage. They will receive direct paper bills, and should make their premium payments by check, electronic funds transfer or credit card until the payroll deduction option becomes available, he said.

“Our priority is to ensure a smooth and effective transition on behalf of the … enrollees,” the general said.

Gamble said Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, known as MetLife, became the new contractor for the TRICARE Dental Program on May 1. The program provides dental benefits for more than 2 million TRICARE beneficiaries worldwide.

Defense finance officials, TRICARE Management Activity representatives and MetLife staffers are working out a long-term solution to the payroll deduction issue, he added, and MetLife will keep affected beneficiaries informed.

Service members who think they may be affected should check their leave and earnings statements, and contact MetLife at 855-638-8371 if they do not see a premium payment, he said.

MetLife offers slightly lower premiums and more extensive benefits than were previously available in the program, Gamble said, including:

  • An increase in the annual maximum to $1,300;
  • An increase in the lifetime orthodontic maximum to $1,750;
  • Additional $1,200 maximum per year for services related to accidents or injuries,
  • No cost shares for scaling and root planning for diabetics; and
  • Coverage of an additional cleaning during pregnancy.

The program covers military family members and reserve-component service members, Gamble said. He noted that active-duty service members and activated National Guard and reserve members are not eligible for the program — though their family members are — because they receive military dental services at no charge.

“TRICARE began its partnership with MetLife on May 1, at 8:03 a.m., the first dental claim was paid under the new TRICARE Dental Program contract,” the general said.

“The beneficiary went to an in-network dentist, [and] the claim was reviewed and processed correctly,” he added. “This is just the first claim, but we expect many more as TRICARE beneficiaries take advantage of their enhanced dental benefits.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Chaplain

Local chaplain helps ANG recruiting efforts

Back in August of 2014, the 163d Reconnaissance Wing Chaplain Major David Sarmiento had the opportunity to be featured in a new Air National Guard (ANG) Chaplain Corps recruitment infomercial, the first of its kind in many year...
 
 
DoD photo by Casper Manlangit

Pentagon salutes Dr. King’s life, legacy

DoD photo by Casper Manlangit Deputy Defense Secretary Bob Work makes remarks during a Martin Luther King Jr. observance at the Pentagon, Jan. 15, 2015. WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Defense Department members gathered Jan. 15 at t...
 
 

CSAF utilizes new technologies to engage with Airmen

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Chief of Staff of the Air Force Mark A. Welsh III teamed up with Google to launch a live discussion with Airmen from bases around the world, using video chat technology. Airmen asked both the general and his wife, Betty Welsh, questions about Air Force life, ranging anywhere from future mission and...
 

 

TRICARE patients must attest to health care coverage

WASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 2015 – As tax season begins, Defense Department officials want to remind TRICARE beneficiaries of changes in the tax laws, which require all Americans to have health care insurance or potentially pay a tax penalty. For the first time since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, all U.S. citizens, including service...
 
 
Department of Defense photo/ Casper Manlangit

Hagel: Fight to end sexual assault must be ‘personal’

Department of Defense photo/ Casper Manlangit Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel provides closing remarks at the Air Force Sexual Assault Prevention Summit Jan. 16, 2015, on Joint Base Andrews, Md. Efforts to eliminate the baneful i...
 
 
HBI-graphic

Finding, keeping focus on the motivation to quit smoking

U.S. Air Force graphic /Senior Airman Jaimi L. Upthegrove “I can smell it, and it makes me nauseous,” he said. “I can’t kiss you or even be around you. This has to stop.” That was the exact moment I knew it was time t...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin