Get to Know Your TRICARE Reserve Select Plan

11/19/2019

TRICARE offers health plans that let National Guard and Reserve members and their eligible family members maintain health care coverage throughout their service and status changes. If you’re a Selected Reserve member, you and your family members may be eligible to purchase TRICARE Reserve Select (TRS). TRS coverage and costs for care is similar to TRICARE Select and TRICARE Overseas Program Select for active duty family members. However, TRS is a premium-based health plan. This means you’ll pay monthly premiums. Below are a few questions and answers to help you understand the key features of TRS.

Who can purchase TRS coverage? 

If you’re a member of the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve and you aren’t eligible for or enrolled in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, you may purchase TRS. Read more about your options in the TRICARE Choices for the National Guard and Reserve Handbook

You don’t qualify for TRS, if any of the below applies to you:

If you aren’t sure if you’re eligible to purchase TRS, you can check in milConnect. If you have eligibility questions or issues, get in touch with your unit personnel office.

“Make sure to register and update your and your family members’ information in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System(DEERS) A database of information on uniformed services members (sponsors), U.S.-sponsored foreign military, DoD and uniformed services civilians, other personnel as directed by the DoD, and their family members. You need to register in DEERS to get TRICARE.,” said Brian Smith, program manager for Reserve Component health plans at the Defense Health Agency. “If your information is incorrect, you may not show as eligible to purchase TRS coverage.” 

How do you purchase TRS coverage?

Like all TRICARE premium-based health care plans, you can purchase TRS any time during the year as long as you qualify. You can purchase TRS online through Beneficiary Web Enrollment, by phone, fax, or mailing in a Reserve Component Health Coverage Request Form (DD Form 2896-1). You may submit the form in person at your TRICARE Service Center, if you live overseas. Be sure to purchase coverage within the specified deadline. You’ll need to include an initial two-month premium payment when you enroll. You’ll also have to set up a reoccurring payment for your monthly premium. This can be an electronic funds transfer from your bank or reoccurring credit card.

How do you get care with TRS?

“With TRS, you can choose your TRICARE-authorized providers and use the TRICARE Pharmacy Benefit,” said Smith.

To get health care, you can make an appointment with any TRICARE-authorized provider.The provider can be network or non-network. Referrals aren’t required. However, some services require pre-authorization. Go to your regional contractor’s website for information about pre-authorization requirements. When you visit a TRICARE network provider, you’ll pay lower cost-shares and your provider will file claims for you. If you get care from a non-network provider, you may have to file your own claims. If you want to find a TRICARE-authorized providerAn authorized provider is any individual, institution/organization, or supplier that is licensed by a state, accredited by national organization, or meets other standards of the medical community, and is certified to provide benefits under TRICARE. There are two types of TRICARE-authorized providers: Network and Non-Network. DS, use Find a Doctor or call your regional contractor.

You can only get care or pharmacy services at a military hospital or clinic if space is available. 

What are the costs associated with TRS?

With TRS coverage, you pay monthly premiums, a yearly deductible, and applicable copayments or cost-shares for covered services. Learn more about TRS costs and view them on the TRICARE website. 

You may choose to end TRS coverage at any time. It’s important to note that voluntary disenrollment will lead to a 12-month lockout from TRS coverage. Visit the Ending TRICARE Reserve Select Coverage page to learn how to end your coverage. 

If you’re a Selected Reserve member, visit TRICARE Reserve Select to learn more about costs and coverage. Getting to know your health plan will help you make informed choices and take command of your health. Find more information that’s helpful in the TRICARE Choices for the National Guard and Reserve Handbook.

Last Updated 6/23/2020