Most health insurance policies pay first for a person’s health care services. Tricare supplemental insurance is different in that after Tricare has paid its portion of your bill, the supplemental insurance will then reimburse you for out-of-pocket expenses associated with your medical care.
Every supplemental insurance policy has slightly different rules. Tricare’s supplemental insurance comes in a few different forms so that you can tailor it to your needs. It is important that you understand the rules because some forms of Tricare supplemental insurance may not be suitable for you. For example, the cost of the supplemental plan could exceed any anticipated out-of-pocket expenses, or the plan may not cover certain conditions that you are likely to need to claim for.
Options for Civilian and Military
One of the most popular Tricare plans is the Mediplus plan that is offered to members of the Military Officers Association of America. The plan comes in a few forms, including an Inpatient only plan, a standard in and outpatient plan, and a Prime Plan that offers very broad coverage.
The Mediplus supplemental insurance will top up your basic cover and gives you the peace of mind that you will be able to cover all of your medical bills – including stays in hospital, prescriptions and visit to the doctor.
The cost of supplemental insurance depends on how much of a deduction you are willing to accept, your age, and whether you are a smoker or not. You can add your spouse and your children onto your insurance, and there are plans for whole families, people who are of working age, and people who are retired.
Supplemental insurance is invaluable because it makes health care affordable once again. For many people, insurance is just one part of the equation; useful for minor illnesses, but simply not enough to cover the cost of truly debilitating illnesses. These people find that when they need regular medical care or major procedures, the additional fees are simply too much for them. Supplemental insurance would offset some of those costs.
Who Can Get Tricare’s Supplemental Insurance Plans
If you are under the age of 65 and a member of the Military Officer’s Association of America you can get Mediplus. Otherwise, you can sign up for one of the other versions of supplemental insurance aimed at retirees or students.
Before you sign up for a plan, however, it is worth checking how the plan handles enrollment fees, copays, dependents that live in other parts of the country, and other unusual scenarios. Will your insurance cover long-term overseas care? What will happen if you die – will your spouse still be able to benefit from Tricare and any supplemental cover? Each supplemental insurance provider has their own rules.
Health insurance can be a confusing area. It is worth doing as much research as possible today, while you are still healthy, so that should you ever need insurance you know exactly what you are covered for, and you have peace of mind.
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