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Guard and Reserve “to make the switch” to restructured TRICARE Reserve Select

CHURCH FALLS, Va. -- National Guard and Reserve members currently in the TRICARE Reserve Select health care plan must sign up for the restructured TRS by Sept. 30, in order to continue their coverage. Effective Sept. 30, the "old" TRS ceases to exist. A restructured TRS begins Oct. 1. 

"Don't forget to make the switch" should be the motto of the day as current TRS participants are automatically disenrolled Sept. 30. Continued coverage under TRS is not automatic. 

By law, enrollees must attest that they are not eligible for, or currently covered under, the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program when they submit a new TRS request form. 

In August, a letter was sent by Reserve Affairs to Reserve Component members currently covered by TRS. The letter explained the program changes and how to continue coverage, but as of early September, only 15 percent of the approximately 11,000 current members had completed the new TRS request forms and sent them in to their regional managed care contractor. 

To continue TRS coverage, all current members must follow the instructions at https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/appj/trs/ to print out, sign and return a new TRS request form to their regional contractor by Sept. 30. 

If payment is usually made by check, the first month's payment must also be included. Those members who are paying electronically do not need to include a payment - if they meet the Sept. 30 deadline in submitting a new TRS request form. 

Under the restructured TRS starting Oct. 1, there are only two qualifications. First, the member must be a Selected Reserve member of the Ready Reserve. Second, the member must not be eligible for the Federal Employee Health Benefits program or currently covered under FEHB (either under their own eligibility or through a family member). They must attest to this on the new TRS request form.

National Guard and Reserve members can find out more about the restructured TRS through the "My Benefits" portal at www.tricare.mil. Monthly premiums are $81 for the service member and $253 for member-and-family coverage. TRS offers coverage comparable to TRICARE Standard and Extra.

National Guard and Reserve members can contact their Reserve Component points of contact to be found at http://www.defenselink.mil/ra/html/tricare.html if they have additional questions about their eligibility for TRS.