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Eyeglasses or Contact Lenses

Active duty service members are covered for eyeglasses at military hospitals and clinics at no cost.

For all other beneficiaries, TRICARE only covers the following:

  • Contact lenses for treatment of infantile glaucoma  
  • Corneal or scleral lenses for treatment of keratoconus.
  • Scleral lenses to retain moisture when normal tearing is not present or is inadequate
  • Corneal or scleral lenses prescribed to reduce corneal irregularities other than astigmatism
  • Intraocular lenses, contact lenses or eyeglasses to perform the function of the human lens, lost as the result of intraocular surgery or ocular injury, or congenital absence. Benefits for intraocular lenses for this condition are limited to standard, fixed, non-accommodating monofocal lenses.

Benefits are specifically limited to one set of lenses related to one of the qualifying conditions above. A set also may include a combination of lenses and eyeglasses when necessary and related to one of the qualifying eye conditions. A new set may be covered when there is a prescription change related to one of the qualifying conditions, subject to medical review.

To expedite the medical review process, providers may attach a Letter of Attestation in lieu of clinical documentation to the authorization request. 

Cost Information

Services Not Covered

  • Adjustments, cleaning and repairs for eyeglasses.
  • Replacement of glasses due to loss, wear or physical growth.
  • Deluxe or extra features for glasses such as mirror coating, polarization or progressive lenses.
  • Replenishment of disposable contact lenses, after one initial package is cost-shared, when the prescription remains unchanged.

Additional Information

Additional resources are available for retired service members of all military branches through Naval Ophthalmic Support and Training Activity (NOSTRA).