Days may be numbered for “10-year rule”

By Tom Philpott: Military Update The Senate Armed Services Committee has voted to end the “10-year rule” used by the government for more than two decades to screen court orders seeking automatic payment of retired pay to former military spouses. The change is one of three adjustments to the Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act [...]

BRAC could mean higher medical costs

By Tom Philpott More than 128,000 military beneficiaries taking Viagra or Cialis for erectile dysfunction likely will have to switch this fall to Levitra or face higher co-payments on their prescriptions. The Defense Department’s Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee will recommend in mid-July that Dr. William Winkenwerder Jr., the Pentagon’s top health official, narrow the field [...]

Officials want to raise TRICARE co-payments and fees

By Tom Philpott : PNT columnist Defense Department officials say it’s time users of military health care pay a greater share of rising medical costs, perhaps through higher co-payments and enrollment fees that haven’t been raised since TRICARE, the military’s managed care program, began a decade ago. In an interview, Dr. William Winkenwerder, Jr., assistant [...]

June 14 Military Update

By Tom Philpott The Defense Advisory Committee on Military Compensation has adopted an “action plan” to study private-sector-like changes to military pay and retirement, the kind that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has endorsed for several years. The committee of seven “eminent authorities in the fields of compensation,” as described by the department, adopted an agenda [...]