In a statement on the TRICARE web page, officials said, "Express Scripts and Walgreens have announced a new network agreement for Walgreens participation ...However, in line with TRICARE Management Activity's commitment to the efficient management of the TRICARE pharmacy benefit, Walgreens will remain designated a non-network pharmacy provider."
Walgreens left the TRICARE network last December following a continuing dispute with Express Scripts, the TRICARE pharmacy benefit manager. The two apparently developed a follow-on but limited working agreement in July that did not include TRICARE.
TRICARE officials reported earlier this year that the Express Scripts-Walgreens dispute likely would push more military subscribers to use a mail order option for obtaining prescription medications. That has occurred, according to TRICARE, with mail orders up 30 percent for the year and use of retail pharmacies down ten percent. The mail order method offers savings for the Pentagon.
Even without Walgreens' participation, the TRICARE network still includes 57,600 retail pharmacies in the U.S. and U.S. territories.