Medical care: What's the best option?

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. --
Along with knowing your medical history and the nature of military life, the 10th Medical Group is a certified Patient-Centered Medical Home clinic. We're the best option for your healthcare needs but you might occasionally need primary care outside of normal duty hours. As a Tricare beneficiary, you have options: patient-centered medical home care, urgent care or visiting an emergency room.

Patient-centered medical home care
A team of 10th MDG primary care providers, case managers, behavioral health specialists and others, provide comprehensive, coordinated and integrated primary care, with the goal of increasing quality, access, continuity and satisfaction while reducing costs.

Give us a chance to let you see your primary care manager. Our patient-centered medical home teams make every effort to meet your needs. We may be able to take care of you with a visit to your provider.

Call us first if you have a common illness such as a cold, earaches, a low-grade fever, or a minor injury, such as sprains, back pain, or minor cuts and burns.

Urgent care
Urgent care clinics offer outpatient medical services on a walk-in basis to treat acute illnesses when access to a primary care manager is not available and focus on episodic care. These clinics rarely have access to patient medical records.  Tricare Prime beneficiaries will receive a bill if they visit without an authorization. 

To get a referral, call 524-CARE (2273) to speak with a provider during normal business hours, or to speak with a provider-on-call or the Nurse Advice Line after-hours.

Emergency rooms
Emergency rooms provide life-saving care for severe conditions or injuries that require immediate attention.  Like urgent care, ER providers may not have access to a patient's medical records to make informed choices about treatment and necessary tests.

If you have a true emergency and face loss of life, limb or eyesight, you don't need authorization to visit an ER.

Some examples of needing to visit an ER include difficulty breathing and shortness of breath, pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen, fainting, sudden dizziness and weakness, changes in vision, confusion or a change in mental status, sudden or severe pain, uncontrolled bleeding, severe or persistent vomiting or diarrhea, coughing or vomiting blood, suicidal feelings, difficulty speaking, unusual headache and unusual abdominal pain.

Contact information
-- CARE line: Comm: 524-2273, DSN: 524-CARE (2273), press 1 to schedule an appointment or leave a message for your healthcare team, 2 for refill medications, 3 for the Nurse Advice Line, 4 for laboratory and radiation services, 5 to check on a referral or questions about your benefits
-- United Healthcare: 877-988-9378 or visit www.uhcmilitarywest.com
-- Medicare Referrals: 333-5672/5752
-- Records Department: Fax 333-5451 or call 333-5396
-- MiCare--Send a secure message to your PCM at https://app.relayhealth.com
-- TriCare Online--Book appointments online 24/7 at www.tricareonline.com
-- Express Scripts: Call 877-363-1303