FALLS CHURCH, Va. –
You do a lot of good things to take care of your health. You eat healthy foods, exercise, and go to the doctor for preventive care
. You tend to your teeth by brushing, flossing, and seeing the dentist regularly. But don’t forget your eyes. Vision and eye health are an important part of supporting an overall healthy lifestyle.
“One way to commit to vision and eye health is to schedule your routine eye exam,” said Joy Mullane, a health policy analyst for TRICARE Health Plan’s Member Benefits and Reimbursement Section. “And don’t forget children. They need vision care, too. These are things to think about so you can preserve your vision and maintain a high quality of life.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(CDC), about 11 million Americans over age 12 need some form of vision correction. It’s important to know if you’re one of them. Here’s an overview of vision coverage for active duty service members (ADSMs), National Guard and Reserve members, retirees, and their eligible family members.
For vision services, you may have the option to visit a military hospital or clinic
or see any TRICARE-authorized optometrist or ophthalmologist.
Eye exams for active duty service members (including National Guard and Reserve)
To remain fit for duty, ADSMs have regularly scheduled eye exams. You can find out where you can get eye exams by going to Eye Exams for Active Duty Service Members
. TRICARE Prime covers the cost for prescription glasses, sunglasses, or contacts
for ADSMs and activated members of the National Guard and Reserve.
For members of the National Guard, Reserve, and their families, eye care services depend on the sponsor’s status and TRICARE health plan. Go to Eye Exams for Guard/Reserve Members and Their Families
Eye exams for active duty family members
Active duty family members (ADFMs) may be eligible for TRICARE covered eye exams
. Your eligibility depends on your beneficiary status, your age, and your health plan. TRICARE covers routine eye exams:
If you have diabetes, you can receive medically necessary eye exams. This is in addition to your routine eye exam coverage.
Learn more about eye exam coverage for ADFMs
Eye exams for retirees and family members
Retirees and family members must be enrolled in a TRICARE Prime plan to be eligible for routine eye exams. If you’re covered by retiree benefits—this includes Medal of Honor recipients—you may eligible, as well. TRICARE covers routine eye exams:
Check Eye Exams for Retirees, Their Families, and All Others
for more information, including guidelines about where you can get your eyes checked. Keep in mind, you may need a referral or pre-authorization
Coverage for glasses and contacts
After your eye exam, your doctor may recommend glasses or contacts for clearer vision. For family members, TRICARE only covers glasses or contact lenses to treat certain conditions, like infantile glaucoma. Refer to Glasses and Contacts
to see who’s covered.
However, you may also qualify for vision coverage through the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program
(FEDVIP). You must be enrolled in a TRICARE health plan
to be eligible. Those who qualify to purchase a FEDVIP vision plan include:
to learn about your vision plan options.
If you’re covered by the US Family Health Plan
, your coverage for eye exams and glasses and contacts depends on your provider. Check with your provider to see what’s covered.
For tips from the CDC on protecting your eyes and your vision, check out 5 Ways to Protect Your Vision
Remember, regular eye exams can help your eyes stay healthy, support clear vision, and catch problems early. Make your eye health and vision care a priority. To learn more, visit Vision Coverage
or contact your regional contractor
if you have questions.
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