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New TRICARE Prime Fee Payment Process

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- TRICARE rules are expected to change regarding how your TRICARE Prime enrollment fees are paid.

As early as 2010, Prime beneficiaries will need to begin making their enrollment fee payments via electronic means. However, not everyone pays enrollment fees, so people should note whether this applies to them:

· DO pay fees if enrolled in TRICARE Prime as a retired service member, the family of a retired service member, a survivor or an eligible former spouse.

· DO NOT pay fees if enrolled in TRICARE Prime or TRICARE Prime Remote as an active duty service member, the family of an active duty service member or a transitional survivor of an active duty service member. There are also no fees associated with standard coverage.

These changes to payment of enrollment fees mean that those TRICARE enrollees who pay enrollment fees will be required to pay them by one of the following methods:

· Allotment from the sponsor's retired military pay; or
· Electronic funds transfer (EFT) from their financial institution established directly to TriWest; or
· Recurring credit card (Visa® or MasterCard®).

When these changes become effective, the only time a check payment will be accepted is for the first payment to cover the next quarterly period while an allotment or other electronic means of payment is being processed.

For those people currently making TRICARE Prime enrollment fee payments electronically, no action is needed, unless they are signed up for an online bill pay with their bank. This may mean that a physical check is being cut from their bank and mailed to TriWest, and a change such as an EFT is needed to become compliant with TRICARE's electronic requirement.

Luckily, it's easy to register and get started. To begin, simply log on to Paying online has several positive features. For example:

1. Security. TriWest uses a secure Web site, certified through the Defense Information Security Accreditation Program, leaving you the peace of mind that comes with secured access while managing your family's health care.
2. Convenience. At a glance, view payment history, claims status or receive instant updates through QuickAlert e-mails notifying you when an authorization or specialty referral has been processed.
3. Timely payments. Save yourself the worry of writing and mailing checks, therefore helping to eliminate risk of missing payments, which could result in disenrollment from Prime.
4. Less relocation worries. When your payments are electronic, you'll have one less stop to make on your move so you can concentrate on what matters most.
5. Automatic payments. Automated payments take one more worry off your plate each month.

To start electronic payments:

Registered users can log on to Non-registered users can create an account at and receive a password within minutes. Click "Online Payment" and provide the information required for your payment option (allotment, EFT, or credit card).

By mail
Go to and select "Find A Form" from the Quick Links section to download and print an allotment or EFT/Recurring Credit Card form. Complete the applicable form, sign and mail it with your initial fee payment to:

TriWest Healthcare Alliance Corp.
P.O. Box 43590
Phoenix, AZ 85080-3590

Learn more about making electronic payments by logging on to or calling 1-888-TRIWEST (874-9378) between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. A representative will answer any questions and better inform clients about online Web registration or help to establish an electronic fee payment.