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Eye Exams

Covered by TRICARE?Limits
It depends

Depends on who you are, your TRICARE plan and your age

Your eye exam coverage depends on:

  • Who you are
  • Your TRICARE plan
  • Your age

You may need a referral and/or prior authorization. >>Learn More

Routine Eye Exams

A Routine Eye ExamAn exam of your vision and the health of your eyes. is more than the simple vision screening test your primary care doctor may do with a standard eye chart.

  • You can visit an optometrist or ophthalmologist.
  • You’ll get a prescription for glasses if you need them.
  • A prescription for contact lenses requires a separate exam

In general, TRICARE covers routine eye exams:

  • As needed for active duty service members to maintain fitness for duty
  • Once a year for active duty family members
  • Every two years for all other TRICARE beneficiaries.
  • For diabetic patients as needed, regardless of plan.

Note: Costs for eye exams vary based on plan.

Well-Child Eye ExamsEye exams through TRICARE’s Well-child Care benefit are routine eye exams that may be given every two years between the ages of three and six that also include screening for amblyopia (lazy eye) and strabismus (crossed eyes). These eye exams are provided by an optometrist or ophthalmologist.

TRICARE covers well-child eye exams:

  • Every two years beginning at age 3
  • Between the ages of three and six, the exam should include screening for lazy eye and crossed eyes.
  • You can visit an optometrist or ophthalmologist

There is no cost for well-exams, regardless of plan.

Ophthalmic Services

TRICARE covers eye exams and other specialized services to diagnose or treat eye conditions.


This list of covered services is not all inclusive. TRICARE covers services that are medically necessaryTo be medically necessary means it is appropriate, reasonable, and adequate for your condition. and considered proven. There are special rules or limits on certain services, and some services are excluded.

Last Updated 12/6/2016

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