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Prime Travel Benefit (PTB) Program for the South Region

***PLEASE NOTE: The process for the South TRICARE Prime Benefit Program has changed. Additional documents are needed to process your claim without delay. Please see Step 3 for the complete list of documents.***

**FOR TRAVELERS EMPLOYED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (DoD), THE TRICARE REGIONAL OFFICE - SOUTH (TRO-SOUTH) WILL ENTER TRAVEL ORDERS / VOUCHERS INTO THE DEFENSE TRAVEL SYSTEM ON THE TRAVELER'S BEHALF.**

Thank you for your interest in the Prime Travel Benefit. The following is the latest information regarding the TRICARE Prime Travel Benefit. If you plan on traveling with a Non-Medical Attendant (NMA), please carefully read STEP THREE, PARAGRAPH 4.

Please note that you must submit all required documents listed in Step Three below in order for your claim to be processed.

STEP ONE - QUALIFYING FOR THE TRICARE PRIME TRAVEL BENEFIT
If the patient meets all of the following four requirements, they may be eligible for the benefit, and should proceed to STEPS TWO and THREE. If not, the patient does not qualify for travel reimbursement.

  1. The patient must be a non-active duty member or a medal-of-honor veteran enrolled in TRICARE Prime or Prime Remote with a civilian network primary care manager (PCM). Prime Travel is not a benefit for active duty members who are the patient. However, they can serve as NMAs.
  2. The patient must have a referral from the patient's PCM to a specialty care provider for a TRICARE covered benefit and the referral is for non-emergency specialty care. The referral must be authorized by Humana Military Healthcare Services (1-800-444-5445). If the appointment is at an MTF, a referral authorization from Humana Military is not required. Instead, a copy of the PCM’s referral letter and the patient's Composite Health Care System (CHCS) Appointment Schedule will satisfy the requirement for verification of the PCM referral and appointment completion.

    If enrolled at a military treatment facility (MTF), contact a beneficiary counseling and assistance coordinator at the MTF to determine eligibility for the benefit or for assistance. MTF-enrolled beneficiaries cannot file claims with TRO-South.
  3. The distance from the PCM's office to the specialty care provider's office must be more than 100 miles, one way. The distance is determined zip code to zip code utilizing only the Defense Table of Official Distances.

    Family members located overseas who have an active duty sponsor, or who have been authorized care through the Secretarial Designee Process, have an existing travel benefit under JFTR U5240-C, so the Prime Travel Benefit does not apply.
  4. There cannot be any network, non-network providers, or MTFs available to provide the necessary care within 100 miles from the PCM’s office.
  5. Attention all COAST GUARD Beneficiaries: For travel on and after 1 Nov 2011, Coast Guard beneficiaries entitled to the Prime Travel Benefit (enrolled to MTF or network) shall contact the Coast Guard Health Safety Work-Life (HSWL) Service Center Health Benefits Team for administrative processing of their travel. HSWL Service Center Health Benefits Team is available at 1-800-9HBAHBA (1-800-942-2422) or via the following address:

    Commanding Officer HSWL SERVCEN
    ATTN: Health Benefits
    300 E. Main St, Suite 1000
    Norfolk, VA 23510

    All Prime Travel must be preapproved before travel has commenced for reimbursement to be authorized.

STEP TWO - TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENT- This is an actual expense reimbursement program.

PLEASE NOTE: Civilian government employees who are issued advanced travel orders will not be reimbursed for meals for travel under 12 hours in duration if they are serving as NMAs. Without the advanced travel orders, they will be paid for actual expenses occurred.

Reimbursement of travel expenses requires that invoices or receipts must be in the name of authorized claimants, must show valid inclusive dates, itemized billing (e.g. room rate per day), and payment in full (zero balance) with corresponding form of payment. Maximum reimbursement for lodging, air/rail, and car rental cannot exceed the established government rates for a geographical area.

Note: Reservations made through discounted hotel/travel programs (i.e. Orbitz, Travelocity, Hotels.com) do not normally provide itemized receipts so please make your reservations directly with the hotel, airline, or rental car company. Please contact our office for further instructions prior to making your reservations and if you are eligible for reimbursement for items such as these.

Receipts are required, regardless of amount, for the following items:

  1. Air or Rail Travel: Reimbursement is limited to "economy" class unless coordinated with TRO-South.
  2. Car Rental: Reimbursement is limited to "compact" class unless coordinated with TRO-South.
    • Lodging: Reimbursement may not exceed the local per diem rate for lodging. The JFTR states that one-day travel is authorized for each 400 miles (one-way) of official distance of authorized travel. Travelers will not be reimbursed for lodging if they can reach their destination within reasonable travel times during the day of the appointment. This means for example, if you have to travel 300 miles to your appointment and your appointment is at 0900, you would not be able to get to your appointment on the same day of travel if you left within reasonable travel times so you would be able to have lodging the night before. If your appointment was at 1000 and you only had to go 110 miles, lodging would not be authorized. Please Call TRO-South at 1-800-576-0375 to determine if your travel would be authorized.
  3. Fuel: Reimbursement is limited to actual expense. Claimants must fill up on the 1st day of travel, during their trip if necessary, and when they return home (same day). All receipts are required. The first receipt is not reimbursable, as it shows travelers left with a full tank. The final receipt is reimbursed, as it shows the travelers finished the trip with a full tank, just as they started.

STEP THREE - DOCUMENTS REQUIRED WITH TRAVEL CLAIMS
For each eligible Prime Travel or medical appointment, the following documents must be submitted via mail, fax, or secured e-mail. To protect personal information, transmission of documents via e-mail is discouraged. Incomplete and unsigned claim packages cannot be processed.

  1. Prime Travel Patient Information Form ***THIS FORM IS REQUIRED WITH ALL CLAIMS.
    Click Here for Patient Information Form
    508 Compliant Version
  2. DD Form 2762: Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Authorization Form
    Click here for EFT Form
    508 Compliant Version
    Following the initial authorized trip, it is not necessary to resubmit another EFT form for subsequent trips unless there is a change to the preferred, reimbursement bank account.
  3. PCM’s Referral and/or Humana Military Referral Authorization Letter: If the appointment is at an MTF, a copy of the PCM’s referral letter and the patient's CHCS Appointment Schedule will be required in place of the Humana Military referral authorization letter.
  4. Non-Medical Attendant (NMA) Letter: If applicable, a letter from the patient's PCM is required that states that an NMA is appropriate and medically necessary to travel with the adult patient, 18 years of age or older. This letter must be applicable for each individual travel dates as the patients need for an NMA may change depending upon their medical condition. For example, if the patient is having surgery and needs to have someone drive them home, then the NMA would be needed. However, if the person is driving for a routine visit as a follow-up several months later, then an NMA may not be needed. Without this recommendation/letter, the NMA will not be eligible for travel expense reimbursement. Federal regulations authorize only one NMA. The NMA must be a parent, guardian, or an adult member of the patient's family who is at least 21 years of age. This requirement is waived when the patient is a minor, and less than 18 years of age.
  5. Appointment Attendance Confirmation Form: For verification and audit purposes, please complete this form and have it verified/signed by the specialty care provider's office, when attending appointments.
  6. Active Duty Service Member Memo (ADSM Sample Memo) For ADSM NMAs only. Must be completed by Command or appropriate agency on official agency letterhead to authorize TDY travel reimbursement for the NMA.
  7. Travel Vouchers: DD Forms 1351-2 and 1351-3 for reimbursement of expenses claimed by the patient and/or civilian NMA. ADSM/government employees may be eligible for mileage and per diem allowances if a letter is supplied from their unit. All NMAs (except minors) must file separate claims from the patient. PLEASE MAKE SURE TO SIGN THE CLAIM FORM.
    >>Instructions for DD Form 1351-2
    >>View Travel Voucher Checklist
  8. Original or legible receipts are required to support any expenses for which reimbursement is claimed on the Travel Voucher form(s). PLEASE DO NOT SUBMIT CREDIT CARD RECEIPTS OR RECEIPTS THAT ARE NOT ITEMIZED AS THESE DO NOT SHOW THE INDIVIDUAL ITEMS PAID FOR.

Submitted travel claims are processed using the Defense Travel System.

  • Receipts supporting all reasonable travel expenses submitted for reimbursement must be included with each claim.
  • Government rates are used to estimate the reasonable cost.
  • Beneficiaries are expected to use the least costly mode of transportation.
  • The actual costs of lodging (including taxes) and the actual cost of meals (including taxes and tips, but excluding alcoholic beverages) may be reimbursed up to the government rate for the area concerned.

The TRICARE Prime Travel Benefit is administered by TRO-South for qualified members residing in the following 11 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas (excluding the El Paso area) and Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

FOR MORE INFORMATION/TO SUBMIT PACKETS

Contact the TRO-South Travel Benefit Office via phone:

Submit your complete packet(s) to the TRO-South office via fax or mail:

  • Fax: (210)-292-8517
  • Mail:
    TRICARE Regional Office-South
    Attn: Prime Travel
    7800 IH10 W, Suite 400
    San Antonio, TX 78230
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