Does Medicare Cover Medical Alert Systems? - Find Out If Your Insurance Will Cover The Cost of your Wearable Medical Alert Device
You might have seen people wearing a medical alert device around their neck or on their wrists, but if you don’t wear one of these devices, do you wonder if Medicare will pay for it?
In this article, I give important information about whether your insurance covers wearable alert devices and how much they cost.
Table of Contents
Does Medical Cover Medical Life Alert Systems for Free?
Original Medicare has two separate parts, Medicare Parts A and B. Medicare Part A covers inpatient care, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and some home health care. Medicare Part B covers outpatient care, preventive services, durable medical equipment, and some home health care.
A medical alert system is a device that is worn by a senior citizen or individual with a medical condition that could benefit from having immediate access to emergency assistance. The device typically consists of a base unit, which is connected to the individual’s telephone line, and a wearable pendant or bracelet.
In the event of an emergency, the individual can push a button on the pendant or bracelet, which will send an alert signal to the base unit. The base unit will then automatically call for help from a pre-determined list of emergency contacts.
Some medical alert systems also come equipped with fall detection sensors, which can automatically detect if an individual has fallen and send out an alert even if they are unable to press the button on their own.
So, does Medicare cover wearable alert devices? Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover medical alert systems. However, some private insurance plans such as Medicare Advantage Plans (Medicare Part C) offer to AARP members, Anthem Blue Cross, Aetna, SCAN Health Plan, and more may offer coverage for these devices.
If you are considering purchasing a medical alert system, you should check with your insurance provider to see if they offer any coverage options.
Does Medicare Cover Life Alert Devices?
Original Medicare does not specifically cover Life Alert devices, but it does cover some similar devices that perform the same function. These devices are known as personal emergency response systems (PERS), and they can be covered by Medicare Part B if they are deemed medically necessary.
PERS devices typically consist of a base unit that is connected to the phone line, and a wearable pendant or bracelet that is worn by the user. When activated, the base unit will automatically call for help from a pre-determined phone number, such as 911 or a loved one.
While Medicare doesn’t cover medical alert systems under Medicare Part A and Part B of Original Medicare, medical alert systems are included with Medicare Part C known as Medicare Advantage plans.
If you think you may benefit from a PERS device, talk to your doctor about whether or not it would be covered by your Medicare plan. A PERS devise may be covered by Original Medicare which may be better than medical alert systems covered by Medicare Advantage plans.
Should I enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan so the Medicare Plan Pays for a Medical Alert Detection Device?
A Medicare Advantage Plan is a type of health insurance that is offered by a private company and approved by Medicare. These plans typically include Part A and Part B coverage, and sometimes Part D prescription drug coverage as well.
Some Medicare Advantage Plans also offer extra benefits, like dental, vision, or gym membership. One of the extra benefits that some Medicare Advantage Plans offer is Medicare coverage to cover the cost of a medical alert system offered by bay alarm medical devices and life alert.
If you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, you may be able to get coverage for medical alert systems through your plan. This coverage can help you cover the cost of the device, which can be expensive.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid state that Medicare Advantage plans must provide the core benefits of Original Medicare but they are allowed to provide additional benefits.
This is why medical alert systems are available through these private plans and why Original Medicare does not cover these specific systems offered by certain medical alert companies not offering the PERS devices.
Do Medigap plans include Coverage Options to cover Medical Monitoring Device costs?
https://medicarehope.com/secondary-insurance-for-medicare/A Medigap plan is considered a secondary insurance policy that works alongside Original Medicare that helps to cover the gaps in coverage that are not provided by Medicare. This includes things like copayments, deductibles, and coinsurance. Some Medigap plans also cover extra benefits that Medicare does not, such as emergency medical care while traveling outside of the United States.
As for whether or not a Medigap plan will cover the cost of a Life Alert system, it depends on the specific plan. Some plans may cover the entire cost of the system, while others may only cover a portion or none of the cost.
Medicare supplement insurance companies may provide extra benefits including offering coverage of medical alert systems.
It is critical to mention that Medicare would provide coverage for durable medical equipment such as a PERS device if it is deemed medically necessary by your treating physician.
It is important to check with your insurance provider to see what is covered under your specific plan and what they won’t cover. Many medical alert systems are not included as they are not approved Medicare devices.
Will Medicaid Health Insurance Plans Cover Medical Alert System Services?
Medicaid is a government-funded health insurance program that provides coverage to low-income individuals and families. Medicaid covers a wide range of health care services, including doctor visits, hospital stays, prescription drugs, and preventive care.
Some states also cover additional services, like dental care and vision care. Medicaid does not typically provide long-term care insurance coverage or custodial care.
Unfortunately, both Medicare and Medicaid do not cover the cost of medical alert systems specifically, they do cover many of the services that these systems provide access to, like emergency response services and home health aides. As such, Medicaid can help offset the cost of medical alert systems for those who qualify for coverage.
With the systems covered by Medicaid, they will help cover the cost of a medical alert monitoring system that is like a life alert. If you are eligible for Medicare and Medicaid make sure you talk with your doctor about how they can provide a medical alert system that is approved by the government.
What is an Emergency Wearable Alert Home System Device?
Emergency wearable alert devices are designed to help people who may need assistance in an emergency situation.
These devices can be worn as a pendant or bracelet, and they usually include some sort of button that can be pressed to send out an emergency signal. The signal is then received by a monitoring center, which can dispatch help if needed.
There are a variety of different emergency wearable alert devices available on the market, and they vary in terms of features and price. Some devices simply send out a basic emergency signal, while others offer additional features like GPS tracking or two-way communication.
If you or someone you know is considering an emergency wearable alert device, it’s important to check with your insurance provider to see if the cost will be covered.
Medicare does not currently cover the cost of these devices, but some private insurance plans may offer coverage. Medicare may help cover similar types of devices through your DME retail store.
What are the benefits of a wearable alert device?
A wearable alert device can provide a number of benefits for seniors, including:
- Provide peace of mind for both the wearer and their loved ones;
- The ability to live independently for longer;
- 24/7 access to emergency assistance; and
- Potentially lower health care costs.
While medical alert system companies have provided many different options, not all options may be covered by your specific plan. Coverage for a medical alert device may be covered at 100 percent or your plan may pay for medical alert devices after you satisfy a deductible or copay.
Does Original Medicare Offer Medical Alert System Coverage?
No, Original Medicare does not cover the cost of wearable alert devices in most instances, but this does not mean there is not a suitable option that Medicare will cover.
If you are considering purchasing a wearable alert device, check with your insurance provider directly (Medigap Plan or Medicare Advantage Plan) to see if it is covered by the insurance company and the plan you are enrolled on.
Not all private Medicare plans pay for these types of medical devices. It is critical to work with a Medicare Insurance Agency that can help you enroll in a plan that meets your medical needs.
How much do Wearable Alert Devices Cost?
Wearable alert devices can be very cost-effective these days. A quick internet search turns up multiple options and monthly pricing plans.
Here are a few options we found online:
- Lively offers monthly plans ranging from $25 to $40 per month
- Bay Alarm Medical offers monthly plans ranging from $25 to $40 per month
- Lifefone also offers similar pricing
- Life Alert is one that does not show pricing on their website so you would need to call to inquire.
Depending on your budget and alert system may feel expensive, but luckily your family is usually more than happy to cover the cost. We have found that the family members are the ones who want their loved ones to wear these devices the most to reduce their worry and stress.
Medicare Advantage plans typically cover the cost of wearable alert devices for those who qualify.
Contact your Medicare Advantage plan or Medicare Insurance Agent to see if the plan you signed up for provides these extra benefits.
Are Life Alert Costs Covered by Medicare?
As Life Alert was one of the first of several medical alert systems, they are at the forefront of our minds due to great television advertising.
- Life Alert is a medical alarm system that includes equipment such as an emergency button, transmitter, and receiver.
- Medicare covers the cost of certain devices that qualify, if it has been prescribed by their doctor or if the person has Alzheimer’s Disease or a chronic condition.
- Life Alert is not covered by Medicare if it is simply for safety reasons, such as to prevent falls in an elderly individual.
- Life Alert may be covered by your Medicare Advantage plan.
Medicare alert systems can cost more than you are able to afford. If this is the case, a Medicare Advantage plan could be your best option as these plans can help cover the costs of these systems.
Where can I Purchase a Wearable Alert Device?
We understand that you may not know where to buy a medical alert system, so we always encourage you to call your health insurance plan to find out what they will cover prior to buying a device on your own.
A medical alert system is covered by many Medicare Advantage plans, so look for their customer support phone number on the back of your medical card.
You can buy or obtain a wearable alert device in the following ways:
- At a pharmacy
- At a medical supply store
- Through a Durable Medical Equipment (DME) company
- From a private insurance company
Do Alert System Benefits Provide tracking, emergency help button, and monitoring fall safety included with their detection systems?
Most top-rated alert systems will have a mobile application that will allow you to track the whereabouts of the individual wearing the device. The GPS feature on the phone will also allow for two-way communication so the individual can be located if they are unresponsive or lost.
In addition, many of these applications now come with an emergency help button that will immediately notify the proper authorities if the individual is in danger or has had a fall.
What is an example of an alert system that includes these features?
One example of an alert system that includes GPS tracking, an emergency help button, and monitoring for falls is the Lively Mobile app. This app can be used with iOS and Android devices and has a monthly subscription fee.
Another option is the Bay Alarm Medical app which also includes these features and has a monthly subscription fee.
Lifefone also offers similar services for a monthly fee.
There are many options available when it comes to wearable alert devices. The best way to find one that meets your needs is to consult with your health insurance plan or Medicare Insurance.
How Do I Obtain Quotes for Wristband monitoring systems so I can save money?
If you are shopping for a wearable alert device, it is important to compare prices and features before making a purchase. You can obtain quotes for these devices by contacting the companies directly or by visiting their websites.
Many times, you can also find discounts or coupons by searching online. It is also important to check with your health insurance plan to see if they cover the cost of these devices or if they have any recommendations on where to purchase them.
Do Veterans Benefits Include Health Insurance Coverage for Medical Alert Systems for Senior Care?
Veterans’ benefits do not typically include health insurance coverage for medical alert systems. However, some private insurance companies may offer discounts or special rates for veterans.
It is always best to check with your VA health provider to see if they offer any type of discount on these devices.
What are Some Detection Features Included with a Medical Alert Device?
There are many detection features that can be included with a medical alert device. Some of these features include:
- A fall detector
- An Activity Monitor
- A GPS locator
- An emergency help button
- A two-way communication system
These are just a few of the features that can be included with a medical alert device. The best way to find out which features are available is to contact the company directly or to visit their website.
Do Medical Detection Devices Charge Activation Fees?
Some medical alert systems do charge activation fees while others do not. It is important to check with the company before making a purchase to see if there are any fees associated with the device.
What is the Difference Between a Personal Emergency Response System (PERS) and a Medical Alert System?
A Personal Emergency Response System (PERS) is a device that is worn by an individual and typically includes an emergency help button.
A Medical Alert System is a device that is worn by an individual and typically includes features such as fall detection, GPS tracking, and two-way communication.
Both types of devices typically include an emergency help button that will allow the individual to contact the proper authorities when needed.
Medicare will only cover PERS systems.
Are Payment Plan Options Available?
Most medical alert system companies offer monthly payment plans. Some companies also offer discounts for prepaying for a year or more in advance.
It is important to check with the company before making a purchase to see what payment options are available.
Do you need help finding a better Medicare Plan?
There are many different Medicare plans available, and it can be difficult to know which one is right for you. If you’re not sure which plan is best for your needs, you can get help from one of our licensed and certified Medicare Agents.
Our insurance agents can help you understand your options and find a plan that fits your budget and needs.
Whether a medical alert system is your main priority or you recently enrolled in Medicare and need help finding a plan, we are here to help.
Contact one of our Medicare experts for help today.