Rep. Skelton to Introduce Legislation to Protect TRICARE from Health Care Reform Bill

Washington, D.C. – Today, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-Mo.) released the statement below regarding his intent to introduce legislation to explicitly state in law that TRICARE and the DOD nonappropriated fund (NAF) health plans meet all of the health care requirements currently under consideration by Congress for individual health insurance. These programs provide health coverage to members of the military and their families, military retirees and their families, and employees of U.S. military post/base exchanges and other nonappropriated fund activities.

“Our nation’s military provides us with first-class protection, and it is our obligation to provide them—and their families—with first-class health care in return. While some of this Committee’s members may disagree on overall health care reform, we are united in our commitment to ensuring that any measure signed into law will not have any unintended consequences that adversely impact the military health care programs for our men and women in uniform and their families.

“Although the health care legislation passed by the House explicitly exempted TRICARE from being affected, the Senate bill did not. Unfortunately, the parliamentary rules of the reconciliation process did not allow for the inclusion of language that specifically protects these programs. To reassure our nation’s service members and their families that their health coverage will remain unaffected by this, I will introduce legislation this week to explicitly state that TRICARE and the NAF health plans meet all requirements for individual health insurance; this language will also be included in this year’s national defense authorization bill.”

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3 Comments

  1. Victoria E. Wagner says:

    My husband and I are covered under TRICARE for Life and TRICARE Prime. We pay for this and we also have private insurance that covers us that we pay for through my husband’s job. He is 67 and is employed full-time. He is also covered under Medicare and I will be covered under Medicare in 2011. We as others receiving TRICARE do not abuse the system as has been implied in the press. My husband served 24 plus years as a Marine aviator and was assured that we would have healthcare for life. We have both worked our entire lives and feel that we contribute our share in maintaining our healthcare. Please make sure this is not denied us under the proposed health care changes.
    Sincerely,
    Victoria E Wagner

  2. Douglas Fuhrer says:

    I, among the countless others who have served our country proudly, and have made untold personal sacrifices to the preservation of our great nation, did so with the promise that we would not be forgotten. I could have spent a career making a fortune but instead chose one of service, knowing it was the right thing to do. The decision to serve for me weighed heavily on how I could provide for my future, and that of my family. I now feel the promise of the benefit assured me and my family to be in jeopardy. I served with integrity and bit my tongue many times in favor of things I did not agree with, but no more. I applaud the good man from Missouri for standing up for us by introducing language to protect all veterans active or retired and their families.

  3. WILLIE JAMES MILLER says:

    MY WIFE (MRS. DORIS MARIE MILLER) AND I REALLY APPRECIATE THAT SOMEONE CARES ABOUT WHAT WE SPENT 21 YEARS OF OUR LIVES IN THE UNITED STATES AIR FORCE TRYING TO INSURE WE WOULD BE ABLE TO HAVE ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE. THERE WERE OPPORTUNITIES SUCH THAT WE COULD HAVE LEFT THE AIR FORCE BUT MY PARENTS HAD REACHED THE AGE WHERE HEALTH CARE WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING OF THIER REMAINING LIFE AND THIS CAUSED US TO THINK THAT ONE DAY OUR HEALTH CARE WOULD ALSO BECOME IMPORTANT AND THE DECISION WAS MADE TO REMAIN IN THE AIR FORCE FOR THAT SECURITY. WITOUT HEALTH CARE SUCURITY THE LATTER PART OF OUR LIFE WOULD BE VERY LIMITED. THANK YOU FOR CARING.