Some Tricare beneficiaries in the North region have received corrected letters from Humana Military, apologizing for a letter sent erroneously to those who make their payments by allotment and notifying them about their payment options.
“If you pay your premiums by allotment, that letter was sent to you in error, and we apologize for any confusion this may have caused,” the new letter states.
The new letter clarifies that if the payments are made by allotment, the process “remains the same, and there will be no issues with continuous enrollment. You do not need to take any action and you may disregard this message.”
In early December, some military retirees who pay their premiums by allotment received letters regarding their Tricare payments. The letters sought personal financial details and warned of a possible “interruption” in their health care benefits if the information of their bank account or credit card information, along with Social Security number, wasn’t received by Dec. 24.
Tricare is in the process of transitioning from three regions to two; the current North region will combine with the South region to become Tricare East, and Humana Military, which is the current South region contractor, takes over Tricare East on Jan. 1. Tricare West region remains the same geographically.
Tricare policy requires those in certain plans (Tricare Reserve Select, Tricare Retired Reserve and Tricare Young Adult) to pay monthly premiums through a recurring electronic payment either from the bank account or credit card. Beneficiaries in those plans don’t have the option to pay by allotment.
Humana’s new letter notes that federal regulations do not allow Health Net Federal Services, the current Tricare North contractor, to share beneficiaries’ banking information with Humana, so their automatic payments will not transfer to Humana on Jan. 1.
These beneficiaries can complete the required forms by visiting HumanaMilitary.com/forms, or can contact a beneficiary services representatives at 800-444-5445. Annual or quarterly payments can also be made through HumanaMilitary.com.
Tricare is undergoing other changes, including combining Tricare Standard and Tricare Extra plans into one plan called Tricare Select. Officials have said all Tricare beneficiaries will be enrolled automatically in their respective plans Jan. 1.
Karen has covered military families, quality of life and consumer issues for Military Times for more than 30 years, and is co-author of a chapter on media coverage of military families in the book "A Battle Plan for Supporting Military Families." She previously worked for newspapers in Guam, Norfolk, Jacksonville, Fla., and Athens, Ga.