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April 15, 2022

Senators Want to Expand Tricare Coverage for Retiree Families with Eating Disorders

Last week, a bipartisan group of senators sent a letter to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs and the Director of the Defense Health Agency calling for military health insurance to extend Tricare coverage for eating disorders to retirees and their families. In last year's National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Congress expanded Tricare’s eating disorder coverage for service members and their families, but it did not extend coverage to military retirees and their families. In their letter, the senators highlighted that eating disorders affect nearly 30 million Americans and have “the second-highest mortality rate of any psychiatric condition.” The letter references various statistics from recent studies, which found that eating disorder diagnoses among service members had increased by 26% (from 2013-2016), and 21% of children and 26% of service member spouses had symptoms of an eating disorder. Additionally, 16% of female veterans suffer from an eating disorder. The NDAA coverage for service members is planned to take effect on October 1.