TRICARE Flu Resources
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness. The flu can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The flu spreads through coughing, sneezing and personal contact.
We recommend that all beneficiaries get vaccinated. If infected, some people are at a higher risk for serious illness.
TRICARE covers the flu vaccine. The flu vaccine:
- Is an inactivated vaccine that contains a killed virus
- Causes antibodies to develop in the body to provide protection against infection
- Is recommended for all age groups 6 months to 64 years
- Has a high dose version available for those aged 65 years and older
Getting the Flu Vaccine
You can get the flu vaccine at no cost in three ways:
Military Hospital or Clinic
Participating Network Pharmacy
To find a participating network pharmacy:
Call the pharmacy first to ask:
- What days and times can you get the vaccine?
- Who gives the vaccine—a pharmacist or a provider from an in-pharmacy clinic?
- Only vaccines given by a pharmacist are covered by the pharmacy benefit for free. If your vaccine is administered by a provider at an onsite clinic, it may not be covered and you may have to pay the entire cost.
- You can still go to your doctor for the vaccine if the pharmacy has restrictions or it isn’t available. But, you may have to pay copayments or cost shares for the office visit.
- Are there any restrictions, including for children?
- If your state has a restriction, you should go to your primary care physician or a military hospitals or clinic for the vaccine.
TRICARE-Authorized ProviderClick to closeAn 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.
- Find a Doctor
- Follow your plan’s rules for getting care
- You’ll need to pay your copaymentClick to closeA fixed dollar amount you may pay for a covered health care service or drug. or cost shareClick to closeA percentage of the total cost of a covered health care service that you pay. for the office visit
- Active duty service members must have a referral to get the vaccine from any provider other than their primary care manager.
Are you an active duty or Guard/Reserve member?
You’re required to get the flu vaccine.
- You have priority to get the vaccine at military hospitals and military clinics.
- You can also get vaccines at participating retail network pharmacies.
If you go to a participating network pharmacy:
- You must get the vaccine from a pharmacist.
- Don’t get the vaccine from an onsite medical clinic at the pharmacy, or you will have to pay the entire cost of the medication.
If you go to a network doctor other than your primary care manager (PCM), you must get a referral from your PCM.
When you get a flu vaccine from a participating network pharmacy, follow your Service policy guidance for recording the vaccine in your shot record. You'll need the following information:
- The date the vaccine was given
- The vaccine name or code
- Lot number