Military healthcare reform and legislative changes for FY01
Richardson, Timothy R.
Doyle, Richard B.
Barrett, Frank J.
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Healthcare is considered one of the most impoflant non-cash benefits in the military compensation package. However, the Military Healthcare System (MHS) has several significant problems, including inequity in benefits, lack of access to care, growing out-of-pocket cost, and a perceived "promise" of free healthcare for life for military retirees that has not been kept. This thesis examines the MIlS and congressional reforms during the 2nd session of the l06% Congress addressing these problems. An expanded background of the MHS benefit is presented, followed by a description of current problems with the MHS. Recommended DoD reform initiatives are reviewed, along with bills addressing MHS initiatives. Changes to the military healthcare benefit passed for FY0 1 are documented and explained. The research methodology included a review of public records, websites, congressional testimony, reports from relevant congressional coimnittees, JCS, OSD, and DoD healthcare reform proposals, and phone interviews with military healthcare experts. A major new entitlement called TRICARB-For- Life and a retiree pharmacy program were enacted, representing the largest increase in domestic spending in over 30 years to address problems with the MHS.
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