If you’re thinking about purchasing a new mobility scooter for yourself or a family member, one of the first questions that may come to mind is, 'Will Medicare pay for my mobility scooter?'
Medicare is a government-funded health care program designed to provide people 65 and over with support for covering their medical costs. While Medicare benefits won’t pay for everything, the program can often help deal with some of the expenses associated with purchasing a new mobility device.
Does Medicare Cover Mobility Scooters?
Yes, Medicare can provide coverage for a mobility scooter purchase. The program considers mobility scooters and other power-operated vehicles as Durable Medical Equipment (DME), which can be covered under Medicare Part B.
Medicare has specific eligibility requirements to receive coverage for a mobility scooter, so you won’t immediately qualify for coverage just because you are enrolled in the program. If you’re looking for Medicare to help pay for the costs of a mobility scooter, you will need to meet the following criteria:
- You have a medical condition that significantly limits your mobility
- You are unable to accomplish daily acitivites - such as dressing yourself, bathing, getting out of a bed, and using the bathroom - with the help of a non-powered mobility device (e.g. cane or walker)
- You can safely operate a mobility scooter, or you have a companion who is available to help you use the device
- You are able to effectively use the equipment inside your home (e.g. doorways are wide enough and the floor is unblocked)
- Your doctor and your supplier must both be enrolled in Medicare
Points number two and four often make it difficult to receive coverage for a mobility scooter, as (depending on your mobility) insurance may not cover the scooter even if there is a medical need.
How Do I Get Approved for Medicare Coverage?
If you do meet all the criteria above, the next step is to visit your doctor. He or she will need to submit a written order stating that you require a mobility scooter for use in your home. A doctor can also typically connect you with a mobility scooter supplier who can help determine the right make and model for your needs. We also recommend contacting your insurance plan provider at this stage, as there may be restrictions on which DME suppliers you can purchase from.
If you or a loved one does not require the scooter on a permanent basis, it may also be possible to rent the equipment at a lower cost. Speak to your insurance supplier directly to find out if this is an option.
How Much of the Mobility Scooter Costs Will Medicare Cover?
If approved, you will be responsible for paying 20% of the dollar amount that is approved by Medicare. You will also need to pay your Part B yearly deductible. The remaining 80% will be covered by Medicare.
If you’d like to get more detailed information about this process, it’s always best to speak to your Medicare representative directly. This is especially important if you are participating in a Medicare Advantage Plan, such as a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO), as the rules and options may differ slightly for certain services.
The Medicare program can offer excellent support when purchasing a mobility scooter, provided you or the person who will be using the scooter meet the necessary eligibility requirements. Once you’re ready to buy, you can find all our products online here or reach one of our sales specialists at 1-888-441-7575 (option 3) or by email at [email protected]. Our team can help you find the mobility scooter best suited to your needs!