Author Topic: Military (Active/Separated/Retired), and TRICARE (Life/Standard/Remote/ Life)  (Read 62429 times)

lori67

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Do you think it would be too much to ask that they put a titanium screw in James' head and I can wear his processor?   ;)

I'm just going to add this to my list of things to fight Tricare about.  They've also denied a request from 3 different doctors for the blood test to rule out NF2, but they are willing to cough up a few thousand dollars for an MRI of my entire spine.  Hmmm.... couple of hundred dollars for a blood test that only has to be done once, or a few thousand dollars for an MRI that will need to be done annually.....doesn't seem like a tough decision to me.  Let's see how long it takes them to realize that their efforts to save money are costing them more in the long run.  It would be nice if they could come to that conclusion before I have to spend 4 hours sitting still inside a noisy tube, but since it's scheduled for the beginning of next month, I guess I'd better get used to the idea.

Oh, how nice it would be to just suffer from the common cold for once....

Lori
Right 3cm AN diagnosed 1/2007.  Translab resection 2/20/07 by Dr. David Kaylie and Dr. Karl Hampf at Baptist Hospital in Nashville.  R side deafness, facial nerve paralysis.  Tarsorraphy and tear duct cauterization 5/2007.  BAHA implant 11/8/07. 7-12 nerve jump 9/26/08.

moe

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Do you think it would be too much to ask that they put a titanium screw in James' head and I can wear his processor?   ;)

Oh, how nice it would be to just suffer from the common cold for once....


HA! Humor is good medicine. Common sense is not that common as you think.
Actually i would not like to just suffer the common cold! My tinnitus and equilibrium would put me away with the cold!
Life is a b%$#! ~ always a fight going on somewhere. Hang in there, Lori ;)
Maureen
06/06-Translab 3x2.5 vascular L AN- MAMC,Tacoma WA
Facial nerve cut,reanastomosed.Tarsorrhaphy
11/06. Gold weight,tarsorrhaphy reversed
01/08- nerve transposition-(12/7) UW Hospital, Seattle
5/13/10 Gracilis flap surgery UW for smile restoration :)
11/10/10 BAHA 2/23/11 brow lift/canthoplasty

Grateful_1

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My Tricare Report....

I am a dependent wife of a retired air force serviceman.  We have Tricare Prime.  I'm happy to say that Tricare really came through for me recently. They paid for everything (except my co-pay, of course).  This is starting in 2008 with my Cyberknife treatment to my actual surgery 7 months ago, with three more hospital stays shortly thereafter for related complications, home health care providers, to my most recent unrelated gall bladder surgery. They paid the lion's share of my numerous medications.  They provided me with a case manager who did most of the coordination with doctors' offices and dealt with Tricare administration through my ordeal.  I don't know how I would have managed without this help because Tricare can be confusing and I was in no shape to handle this myself. 

At this point, I can say that Tricare service was very good. We are near Scott Air Force Base, in southern Illinois.  Scott no longer has a major Medical Treatment Facility (MTF); just a clinic.  But when they did have doctors working there, it was the audiologist and local ENT there who discovered my AN and referred me to the specialist, so I remain grateful to them for that too. 
So, I am, at this point, a Tricare fan!
St. Louis University Hosp., St. Louis, MO
Drs. A. Mikulec and D. Sasaki-Adams
12/28/10 - Translab surg for 2.5cm AN on right
1/13/11- lumbar drain, pulmonary embolism
3/11/11 - menengitis
4/12/11 & 5/26/11 - CSF leak repairs
SSD, facial paralysis, balance issues, fatigue

GM

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Wow!  whoop...whoop for TRICARE!!   I'm happy all worked well for you.  Please stay in touch so others that are military can learn from you.

Gary
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
Gamma Knife University of Virginia  http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/clinical/departments/neurosurgery/gammaknife/home-page
Note: Riverside Hospital in Newport News Virginia now has GK!!

Grateful_1

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I sure will.  Happy to answers any questions.
St. Louis University Hosp., St. Louis, MO
Drs. A. Mikulec and D. Sasaki-Adams
12/28/10 - Translab surg for 2.5cm AN on right
1/13/11- lumbar drain, pulmonary embolism
3/11/11 - menengitis
4/12/11 & 5/26/11 - CSF leak repairs
SSD, facial paralysis, balance issues, fatigue

lori67

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Ok, this little bit of information might be something you all knew already, but I just found out about it (a day late and a dollar short, as usual...)

But ....did you know that while you or your sponsor are on Active Duty, Tricare will cover the cost of hearing aid batteries?  I wish I had know this before my husband retired as it would have saved me 3 years worth of battery purchases.  I'm not sure what the process is for this benefit but I'd check with either the Tricare people or your audiologist.  My civilian audiologists did not know about this benefit so I guess it's not something Tricare broadcasts, but the audiologist at the military hospital here told me about it and all the doctors in her office seemed to know about it.  Always nice to save a few bucks here and there.

Lori
Right 3cm AN diagnosed 1/2007.  Translab resection 2/20/07 by Dr. David Kaylie and Dr. Karl Hampf at Baptist Hospital in Nashville.  R side deafness, facial nerve paralysis.  Tarsorraphy and tear duct cauterization 5/2007.  BAHA implant 11/8/07. 7-12 nerve jump 9/26/08.

arizonajack

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I see that this topic is mostly about Tricare which doesn't apply to me. But there have been posts about VA benefits so I'll do my bit to keep this thread alive.

I'm not retired and I don't have a service connected disability but I qualified for VA health benefits early in 2011 and, based on limited income (social security), have modest co-pays.

I had my first physical in Nov and all went well.

In Dec I discovered a substantial loss of hearing in my right ear. I learned that VA provides hearing aids under certain circumstances so I reported the condition to my primary physician and was referred to the Audiology department at the VA Medical Center.

The audiologist confirmed almost total loss of hearing in the right ear and slight loss of hearing in the left ear and provided me with hearing aids (free) and referred me to ENT for further evaluation.

ENT set me up with an MRI where the AN was discovered on the right side vestibular nerve. I'm on watch and wait and due for another MRI in Oct.

Since I was also experiencing balance issues the VA has referred me out for Videonystagmography (vng) testing at ASU's speech and hearing department.

The point of this post is to encourage veterans to apply for VA health benefits regardless of any other considerations and see if you are eligible. And keep applying annually. If you get turned down now you might be eligible at another time.

I'm 65 and never expected to have such a potentially costly medical condition this soon in my life. But now that I have it I am really greatful for the VA benefits.
3/15/18 12mm x 6mm x5mm
9/21/16 12mm x 7mm x 5mm
3/23/15 12mm x 5.5mm x 4mm
3/13/14 12mm x 6mm x 4mm
8/1/13 14mm x 5mm x 4mm (Expected)
1/22/13 12mm x 3mm (Gamma Knife)
10/10/12 11mm x 4mm x 5mm
4/4/12 9mm x 4mm x 3mm (Diagnosis)

My story at: http://www.anausa.org/smf/index.php?topic=18287.0

Brian T

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I was diagnosed a month ago at JBER (Join Base Elmendorf Richardson), Anchorage, AK.  I've had nothing but issues so far with Active military doctors wanting to refer me to another MTF. I'm guard by the way.  He submitted a referral to Triwest which promptly told me not to bother to ask about it for 2 weeks.  In that time Triwest lost their contract to United Healthcare and they never processed my referral because they never "received" it.  So I've been this entire afternoon sitting outside my ENT's office trying to get him to submit a new referral which he adamantly wanted to send me to another MTF.  I insisted this time around that I didn't want to see a military physician at all and I wanted to go to Stanford if at all possible.  After 2 hours of waiting around he relented and I hand walked a printed copy of the referral to United Healthcare and talked to a supervisor directly.
Not necessarily related to insurance but I should point out that I started having symptoms 7 years ago.  I went completely deaf in my right ear.  The military docs just wanted to monitor it.  A week later my hearing came back (mostly) but I had tinnitus.  I was 23 at the time and didn't really know any better.  I never received steroids or an MRI then.
If anyone takes a lesson from what I've been through with military healthcare it should be this.  Don't trust the system to work for you at all.  Call everyday and INSIST something be done with you standing there if possible (as I had to with my referral).
Sorry if this is a bit of a rant.  Been a frustrating afternoon.

TSgt Brian Thibodeaux AKANG

arizonajack

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If anyone takes a lesson from what I've been through with military healthcare it should be this.  Don't trust the system to work for you at all.  Call everyday and INSIST something be done with you standing there if possible

Agree.

As satisfied as I am with the care I get at the VA I sometimes have to punch through the front line bureaucracy to get things done.

3/15/18 12mm x 6mm x5mm
9/21/16 12mm x 7mm x 5mm
3/23/15 12mm x 5.5mm x 4mm
3/13/14 12mm x 6mm x 4mm
8/1/13 14mm x 5mm x 4mm (Expected)
1/22/13 12mm x 3mm (Gamma Knife)
10/10/12 11mm x 4mm x 5mm
4/4/12 9mm x 4mm x 3mm (Diagnosis)

My story at: http://www.anausa.org/smf/index.php?topic=18287.0

Brian T

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I just heard back from United Healthcare Military and Veterans and they approved my "care".  They will not cover transportation (I live in Alaska) though.  Not honestly a big deal for me since I fly for free (perk of the civilian job).  I'm working on the specifics with a Tricare supervisor as to what they will cover though.  Don't want to get blindsided by some bureaucracy and technicalities.  Already going to be hard enough giving up work for a year or two.

Brian

wintersmd

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Hi all.  I had my surgery in June 2013 for left side AN.  I am AD Army and will retire in Oct 2014, start terminal leave in June.  I have had great success with Tricare, having my surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.  The only bill I received was for $280.00 for a private room.  Tricare would not approve a private room so I paid the difference out of pocket.  No my quest is to get approval for the soundbite hearing device.  I have been working for about a month trying to figure the insurance piece out, and finally getting some help from my Doctor.  Hope to hear something soon.  I will keep everyone updated on the process.

arizonajack

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Hi all.  I had my surgery in June 2013 for left side AN.  I am AD Army and will retire in Oct 2014, start terminal leave in June.  I have had great success with Tricare, having my surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.  The only bill I received was for $280.00 for a private room.  Tricare would not approve a private room so I paid the difference out of pocket.  No my quest is to get approval for the soundbite hearing device.  I have been working for about a month trying to figure the insurance piece out, and finally getting some help from my Doctor.  Hope to hear something soon.  I will keep everyone updated on the process.

I don't think you'll have much trouble getting approved since the loss of hearing was medically related to your AN.

But why soundbite?

3/15/18 12mm x 6mm x5mm
9/21/16 12mm x 7mm x 5mm
3/23/15 12mm x 5.5mm x 4mm
3/13/14 12mm x 6mm x 4mm
8/1/13 14mm x 5mm x 4mm (Expected)
1/22/13 12mm x 3mm (Gamma Knife)
10/10/12 11mm x 4mm x 5mm
4/4/12 9mm x 4mm x 3mm (Diagnosis)

My story at: http://www.anausa.org/smf/index.php?topic=18287.0

clarencewolverton

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I am also retired Army. I now live in Michigan and because we do not have any MTF's available I lost prime last October and went under TRICARE Standard/Select.  However, I turned 65 and now Have TRICARE for LIFE and with Medicare it was great. I picked my own surgeon for foot surgery (both of my feet) and did not pay a dime.  I am hoping for the same luck on my AN.


Alix May

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I have Tricare Standard (my beloved husband is medically retired Army). So far things are going smoothly, though I'm still pre-treatment.

For two ENT visits, a Neurotologist visit, vestibular testing, MRI, hearing tests, and related blood work and medications, we've been billed $6,126.35, Tricare allowed $1291.30, paid $975.26, and we've paid $316.04. The only delay was getting the MRI approved. Hopefully I don't hit the glitch with the followup MRI later in the summer.
4mmx6mm inferior vestibular branch
diagnosed 1/30/15

Alix May

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Anyone had any luck getting Tricare to cover the Phonak CROS II? I'm dependent of a medically retired service member, so Tricare Standard. I've read BAHA should be covered, but not the CROS II, which seems crazy when BAHA is much more expensive once you factor in the surgery?
4mmx6mm inferior vestibular branch
diagnosed 1/30/15