Due to the growing cost of medical coverage, increasing number of beneficiaries, more services being covered, and the increasing cost of operating the Military Health Service (MHS), the budget for healthcare in the military is projected to grow to $95 billion by 2030. To effectively manage the system, DOD is looking to support the oversight and the management of what will be a new agency called the Defense Health Agency (DHA).DHA will pull from MHS and other DOD posts to oversee both the creation and eventual running of the new agency. Plans are for the DHA to improve the MHS in terms of medical readiness, improve patient health, enhance the care experience, and lower healthcare costs. The DHA would streamline medical facilities and combine functions existing between military branches to reduce redundancies
The transition to DHA will require:
- The Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs to reorganize and create a new three star officer to manage DHA
- Transitioning the Joint Task Force on Capital Medicine to a Directorate in DHA
- Elevating the TRICARE Management Activity to DHA
A reconfiguration of the largest Multi-Service Markets Areas will be set up in San Antonio, Colorado Springs, Puget Sound, Tidewater VA, and the state of Hawaii to develop a five year business plan to meet the performance goals supported in the MHS Strategic Plan.
The Association of the U.S. Navy will continue to monitor further developments as the transition to DHA progresses. For more information, go to www.ausn.org.