TRICARE senior demonstration of military managed care--DOD. Notice of demonstration project.Fed Regist. 1998 Jul 17; 63(137):38558-9.FR
This notice is to advise interested parties of a demonstration project in which the Department of Defense (DoD) will provide health care services to Medicare-eligible military retirees in a managed care program, called TRICARE Senior, and receive reimbursement for such care from the Medicare Trust Fund. The program is authorized by section 1896 of the Social Security Act, amended by section 4015 of the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (P.L. 105-33). The statue authorizes DoD and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to conduct at six sites during January 1998 through December 2000, a three-year demonstration under which dual-eligible beneficiaries will be offered enrollment in a DoD-operated managed care plan, called TRICARE Senior Prime. The legislation also authorizes Medicare HMOs to make payments to DoD for care provided to HMO enrollees by military treatment facilities (MTFs) participating in the demonstration. This part of the demonstration, to be called Medicare Partners, will allow DoD to enter into contracts with Medicare HMOs to provide specialty and impatient care to dual-eligible beneficiaries currently provided on a space-available basis. Additional legal authority pertinent to this demonstration project is 10 U.S.C. section 1092. Under TRICARE Senior Prime, Medicare-eligible military retirees who enroll in the program will be assigned primary care manager (PCMs) at the MTF. Enrollees will be referred to specialty care providers at the MTF and to participating members of the existing TRICARE Prime network. TRICARE Senior Prime enrollees will be afforded the same priority access to MTF care as military retiree and retiree family member enrollees in TRICARE Prime. DoD will receive reimbursement from HCFA on a capitated basis at a rate which is 95 percent of the rate HCFA currently pays to Medicare-risk HMOs, less costs such as capital and graduate medical education, disproportionate share hospital payments, and some capital costs, which are already covered by DoD's annual appropriation. However, under the authorizing statute, DoD must meet its current level of effort for its Medicare-eligible beneficiaries before receiving payments from the Medicare Trust Fund. That is, DoD must continue to fund health care at a certain expenditure level for its Medicare-eligible population before it may be reimbursed by HCFA for care provided to TRICARE Senior Prime enrollees. The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 required DoD and HHS to complete a memorandum of agreement (MOA) specifying the operational requirements of the demonstration project. That MOA was completed on February 13, 1998, and is published below. Except as provided in the MOA, TRICARE Senior Prime will be implemented consistent with applicable provisions of the CHAMPUS/TRICARE regulation, particularly 32 CFR sections 199.17 and 199.18.