Military Council Highlights Importance of TFK Report to Defense Secretary Hagel

The Military Family Readiness Council, chaired by acting Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Jessica Wright, made three recommendations to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel for 2013, and the first recommendation recognizes the importance of the TRICARE for Kids study and the consideration by DOD of comments submitted by the Children’s Hospital Association and the Military Special Need Network.

The recommendation came about as result of efforts to educate and invest the Department of Defense on children’s hospitals’ interest, impact, and expertise in service to military families.

On behalf of children’s hospitals Kara Oakley provided in person and written testimony to the Council about the TRICARE for Kids initiative, and the opportunity it provides to collaborate with the Children’s Hospital Association to ensure that the unique health needs of military children are met, particularly with respect to providing care management and coordination for military children with complex medical conditions. The Council was very engaged in the discussion and supportive of the concepts as demonstrated by its inclusion of the issue as one of only three 2013 recommendations to the Secretary.

The endorsement by the MFRC will be helpful to children’s hospitals and the TFK Coalition as we move forward in service and partnership with military families and DoD to consider reform and improvement of Tricare for children and families.

The following is an excerpt from the recently released 2013 Report (link):

As a result of the program and policy reviews conducted during FY 2013, the Council recommends the following three action items to the Secretary of Defense.

The FY 2013 Recommendations:

1. Recommend that the Office of the Secretary of Defense Health Affairs Working Group preparing the report to Congress required by section 735 of NDAA FY 2013 (aka TRICARE for Kids), consider and review reports submitted by the Children’s Hospital Association and the Military Special Needs Network.