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Take TRICARE with you as you travel over the holidays

Many people travel this time of year. Don’t forget that TRICARE goes with you.  There are multiple, convenient online and telephone customer service options for when you have questions about your health care benefit.

Be sure to download the contact wallet card to have stateside and overseas contacts in one place – your wallet.  The rules for getting care depend on your health plan and where you’re going.  Get routine and preventive care before you travel.

In an emergency, go to the nearest emergency room.  TRICARE covers emergency care. Not sure if you have an emergency? Ask yourself, Is this life-threatening? Does it require immediate medical care? Are the symptoms so painful you need immediate help? If so, then you may have an emergency.  Stateside, you can contact the TRICARE Nurse Advice Line for medical advice in non-emergency situations.  If you’re TRICARE Prime, contact your Primary Care Manager or regional contractor as soon as possible if you are admitted to a hospital or need specialty care.

For dental care, if you’re enrolled in the TRICARE Dental Program and traveling stateside, call Metlife for a participating dentist at 1-855-638-8371. Overseas beneficiaries can call 1-855-638-8372. 

If you’re enrolled in the TRICARE Retiree Dental Program and traveling stateside or in the U.S. Territories find a TRDP network dentist or call Delta Dental at 1-888-838-8737.  If you’re overseas and need to find a dentist, visit trdp.org, or call the AT&T USADirect Access Number +866-721- 8737. You may also call International SOS collect at 1-215-942-8226. Tell the International SOS operator that "Delta Dental" is your dental insurance carrier.


Under either dental program, you can use any dentist. If you use a network dentist, you save both time and money. 

One thing we tend to leave out of our travel planning is our prescription drugs. Fill your prescriptions before you leave. Pack them in your carryon luggage, not your checked baggage, just in case. If you have to fill your prescription while you’re traveling, you may be able to use a military pharmacy if you’ve had prescriptions filled there.  Call the TRICARE Pharmacy contractor, Express Scripts, Inc. for advice at: 1-877-363-1303 (stateside) or 1-866-275-4732 (overseas, where toll-free service is available).  You may be able to visit a network pharmacy if you fill your prescriptions at the same chain’s pharmacy in your home town.  Getting your drugs re-filled when you travel isn’t always easy, so plan ahead. 

Don’t let questions about your health plan spoil your holiday plans. If you lose your wallet card, you can find TRICARE contact numbers at www.tricare.mil/CallUs. Overseas, visit www.tricare-overseas.com/ContactUs and choose the country where you’re stationed for country-specific toll-free numbers.

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