Do You Need a Tricare Case Manager?

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A boy waves a flag.
Rowen, son of Capt. Jessica Colby, 23d Wing Public Affairs officer, and Justin, 41st Rescue Squadron (RQS) HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter pilot, waves a flag. (U.S. Air Froce/Andrea Jenkins)

My infant daughter has a lot of health problems, was in and out of the hospital from birth and had to start a special prescription formula. We had a lot of snafus with Tricare in the process, only to find out later that what we needed was a Tricare case manager to help us through our issues.

We had no idea that was available until we had already had a lot of headaches. Can you tell others about case managers and how to get one?

I'm so sorry you had to go through that drama. There are a lot of things about military benefits that can seem like a total mystery. I didn't know much about case managers either before receiving your letter, so I asked Tricare officials for their help.

Tricare case managers can help beneficiaries navigate sticky or complicated medical issues, Tricare officials told me. Instead of constantly calling your regional Tricare helpline and speaking to a different person every time, a case manager is one person devoted to helping you get through the system. Sometimes that really can make all the difference.

Whether you need a case manager is decided by factors like how complex your care needs, illness or injury are, officials said. It doesn't really matter how you got your medical problem. Your doctor or your doctor's front office staff can help you decide whether a case manager would be helpful.

You can also call your regional Tricare contractor and request one. Officials said about 11,000 Tricare users utilize a case manager every month, so you're not alone in needing help.

Thanks for bringing up this great topic. 

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