Arlington, Va. –  A proposal in the Budget of the U.S. Government, Fiscal Year 2016 to increase prescription drug co-payments for TRICARE beneficiaries met with concern by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS).

Released today, the Budget calls for an increase in retail pharmacy prescription drug co-pays to be phased-in over a nine-year period.  “Proposals to increase co-pays place a great burden for TRICARE beneficiaries – especially retirees and families of active duty military – and also severely limit their ability to receive medications and services from their neighborhood pharmacies,” said NACDS President and CEO Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE.

NACDS has remained highly engaged in efforts to preserve pharmacy access and choice for TRICARE patients over the years.  Most recently, in a letter to the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission, NACDS emphasized the important role of retail pharmacies in helping patients manage their health, as well as the cost-reducing benefits that the pharmacist-patient relationship can produce for military families and veterans and the Department of Defense (DoD).

“TRICARE beneficiaries rely heavily on their local retail pharmacies for a wide range of cost-saving services, including acute care and preventative services such as immunizations,” said Anderson.  “We look forward to working with the Department of Defense on a commonsense approach that provides TRICARE beneficiaries with a choice in how and where they obtain their pharmacy services.  The nation’s service members and their families deserve no less,” said Anderson.