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Newborn Enrollment in DEERS
As a parent of a newborn infant, one of the first decisions you probably made, was deciding on a name for your newborn son or daughter. As a beneficiary of the Department of Defense Military Health System, the second and most important decision you can make is to enroll your newborn infant in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) as soon as possible after birth.
Why Enrolling Your Newborn in DEERS Is Important
By enrolling your newborn in DEERS, you establish TRICARE eligibility for the infant and avoid potential claims problems or other financial hardships for your family in the future. As a new parent, enrolling your baby in DEERS provides you the comfort of knowing your baby will remain TRICARE eligible and able to receive the essential well baby and pediatric health care he or she needs.
Aren't Newborns Already TRICARE Eligible?
A newborn infant is covered as a TRICARE Prime beneficiary in DEERS for the first 60 days after birth -- as long as one additional family member is enrolled in TRICARE Prime or TRICARE Prime Remote. After the initial 60 days, any claim submitted for a newborn will process as TRICARE Standard until the infant is enrolled in DEERS and TRICARE Prime, or the infant's TRICARE Standard eligibility ends. Eligibility for TRICARE Standard benefits ends 365 days after birth for any newborn infant who is not enrolled in DEERS.
How to Establish TRICARE Eligibility for a Newborn in DEERS
Parents and legal guardians must enroll their newborn child in DEERS as soon as possible after birth. To establish a newborn's TRICARE eligibility in DEERS, you must:
  1. Submit a certificate of "live birth”, in person, to the nearest military ID card facility. Or, you may mail a copy of the birth certificate and a notarized DD Form 1172, “Application for Uniformed Services Identification and Privilege Card,” signed by the sponsor to the following address: Office of Commissioned Corps Operations, ATTN: Division of Commissioned Corps Officer Support, Suite 100, Plaza Level, 1101 Wootton Parkway, Rockville, MD 20852.
  2. Apply for your child's Social Security number. Go to the Social Security Administration Web site, http://www.ssa.gov or call 800-772-1213 for an application.
  3. Once you receive your child's Social Security number, go to your nearest identification (ID) card-issuing facility to update their information in DEERS. Or, you may mail a copy of the “Social Security card and the DD Form 1172 to the address listed above. If the Social Security number is not provided within 90 days of the child’s initial entry into DEERS, Direct Care benefits will be suspended.
Any changes that impact family status must be reported to DEERS. Family status changes include marriage, divorce, or new child. Because DEERS enrollment is directly tied to TRICARE eligibility, care may be denied if the sponsor and family members are not enrolled in DEERS.
For additional information on enrolling a newborn baby in DEERS, parents or guardians may contact or visit the nearest military personnel office, ID card-issuing facility, or contact the Defense Manpower Data Center Support Office (DSO) telephone center at 800-538-9552. A list of military ID card facilities is available at http://www.dmdc.osd.mil/rsl/owa/home. Additional information on DEERS eligibility is available on the TRICARE Web site at http://www.tricare.osd.mil/deers/default.cfm.
*See also: TRICARE: The Basics Fact Sheet
TRICARE Eligibility Fact Sheet
Defense Enrollment Eligiblity Reporting System Fact Sheet
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