Medicare Cover Acupuncture

Exploring Alternative Medicine: Does Medicare Cover Acupuncture?

If you’re considering acupuncture as an alternative treatment option, you may be wondering whether Medicare covers these types of services. As an independent insurance agent, Integrity Now Insurance Brokers can help you navigate the complex Medicare coverage options available to you.

In this section, we’ll explore whether Medicare provides coverage for acupuncture, including the requirements for coverage and any limitations or restrictions that may apply. We’ll also discuss the different Medicare coverage options available, including Medicare Part B and Medicare Advantage plans.

Key Takeaways:

  • Medicare may cover acupuncture as an alternative treatment option.
  • There are specific requirements that must be met in order to receive coverage for acupuncture.
  • Medicare offers different coverage options, including Medicare Part B and Medicare Advantage plans.
  • It’s important to consider your individual health needs when selecting a Medicare plan.
  • Costs and limitations may apply when seeking coverage for acupuncture under Medicare.

Understanding Medicare Coverage Options

As an individual seeking Medicare coverage for acupuncture treatments, it’s essential to first understand the different options available to you. Medicare offers Part A, Part B, Part C (Medicare Advantage), and Part D coverage plans.

Medicare Part A covers hospital stays, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and home health care services, while Medicare Part B covers doctor visits, preventative services, and medical equipment. While Medicare Part B does not provide coverage for all types of alternative medicine, it does cover some types of complementary therapies, including acupuncture.

Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Medicare Part C, are offered by private insurance companies approved by Medicare. These plans provide the same coverage as original Medicare (Part A and Part B), but can also include additional benefits, such as dental, vision, and hearing coverage. Some Medicare Advantage plans may offer coverage for acupuncture treatments.

It’s important to note that not all Medicare plans cover acupuncture and the benefits, services, and reimbursement may vary. It’s recommended to research and compare different Medicare plans to determine which plan best fits your individual needs.

Integrity Now Insurance Brokers is an independent insurance agent that can help guide you through the process of selecting the best Medicare plan for you.

Medicare acupuncture coverage

Medicare Coverage Options

Medicare Options Coverage
Medicare Part A Hospital stays, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and home health care services
Medicare Part B Doctor visits, preventative services, and medical equipment. Some complementary therapies, including acupuncture, may be covered
Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) Same coverage as original Medicare (Part A and Part B), and can include additional benefits such as dental, vision, and hearing coverage. Some Medicare Advantage plans may offer coverage for acupuncture treatments.
Medicare Part D Prescription drug coverage

By choosing the right Medicare coverage plan, you can enjoy the benefits of acupuncture treatment without the financial burden. In the next section, we’ll explore whether Medicare Part B covers acupuncture.

Medicare Part B and Acupuncture

Medicare Part B is a component of Original Medicare that provides coverage for medically necessary services, including doctor visits, preventive screenings, outpatient care, and durable medical equipment. But does Medicare Part B cover acupuncture treatments?

The short answer is that in some cases, Medicare Part B may provide coverage for acupuncture. However, there are specific requirements that you must meet in order to be eligible for coverage.

First and foremost, the acupuncture treatment must be deemed medically necessary by a licensed physician or healthcare provider. Additionally, the treatment must be performed by a licensed acupuncturist who meets Medicare’s qualifications and standards.

It’s important to note that Medicare only covers acupuncture for certain conditions, such as chronic low back pain. Other conditions may be covered if they are associated with nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy or surgery, or if they are related to chronic migraines.

Medicare Part B Coverage for Chronic Low Back Pain

If you suffer from chronic low back pain, you may be eligible for coverage for up to 12 acupuncture treatments in 90 days under Medicare Part B. However, only licensed acupuncturists who meet Medicare’s qualifications may perform the treatments, and they must be performed in a Medicare-approved facility.

It’s important to be aware that as of 2021, Medicare has initiated a research study to evaluate the effectiveness of acupuncture for chronic low back pain. This study may result in changes to the coverage and criteria for acupuncture treatments moving forward.

Medicare Part B acupuncture

Another limitation to keep in mind is that not all acupuncture providers accept Medicare. It’s important to check with your provider before scheduling any appointments to ensure they accept Medicare coverage.

Furthermore, it’s important to remember that Medicare does not cover all types of alternative medicine, so be sure to check your plan’s coverage before seeking treatment.

Understanding the costs and limitations of Medicare coverage for acupuncture can help you make informed decisions about your healthcare needs.

Additional Alternative Health Options

While acupuncture may be a popular form of alternative medicine, it’s not the only option for those seeking non-traditional treatments. Medicare may cover other forms of alternative health, including:

  • Meditation: This practice involves calming the mind and relaxing the body through breathing techniques and mental focus. It’s often used for stress reduction and psychological well-being.
  • Chiropractic services: These treatments focus on the musculoskeletal system and aim to relieve pain and improve overall health and wellness.
  • Herbal supplements: These natural remedies, often derived from plants and other organic sources, are believed to promote health and wellness.
  • Massage therapy: This hands-on therapy involves manipulating the body’s soft tissues to reduce pain, stress, and tension.

If you’re interested in exploring these or other alternative health options, consult with your healthcare provider to see if Medicare covers them and if they might be right for you.

Medicare Cover Acupuncture

Medicare Plan Type Acupuncture Coverage Requirements/Limitations Estimated Cost
Medicare Part B Coverage for some acupuncture treatments with a qualified provider (1) Must be deemed medically necessary and ordered by a primary care physician.(2) 20% coinsurance after deductible (3)
Medicare Advantage Coverage varies by plan May require prior authorization or have a limit on the number of treatments covered(4) Varies by plan

“When selecting a Medicare plan, it’s important to carefully review the benefits and coverage offered. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and seek guidance from a licensed insurance agent to help guide you through the process.” – Integrity Now Insurance Brokers


Now that you know more about Medicare coverage for acupuncture, you can make an informed decision about your healthcare options. Remember that Medicare Part B may cover acupuncture treatments for certain conditions, but there are requirements and limitations to consider. Additionally, some Medicare Advantage plans may offer acupuncture services as an added benefit.

If you’re interested in exploring alternative health options, including acupuncture, be sure to review your Medicare coverage choices carefully. Integrity Now Insurance Brokers, as an independent insurance agent, can help you compare plans and find the right fit for your healthcare needs.

Ultimately, whether or not Medicare covers acupuncture may depend on your specific health situation. Consider all of your options and make the choice that is best for you.

Thank you for reading and we hope this article has helped you better understand Medicare coverage for acupuncture. Your health and wellbeing are our top priorities.


Does Medicare cover acupuncture?

Yes, Medicare Part B may cover acupuncture for certain conditions if it is deemed medically necessary and performed by a licensed provider.

What are the different Medicare coverage options for acupuncture?

Medicare offers coverage for acupuncture services under Part B, which covers outpatient services, and some Medicare Advantage plans may also provide coverage.

What conditions may be covered by Medicare for acupuncture?

Medicare may cover acupuncture for chronic lower back pain, osteoarthritis of the knee, and for patients undergoing chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting.

What are the requirements for Medicare to cover acupuncture treatments?

To receive coverage for acupuncture, the treatment must be prescribed by a doctor, performed by a licensed acupuncturist, and must meet specific medical necessity criteria set by Medicare.

How can I find acupuncture providers who accept Medicare?

You can use Medicare’s online Physician Compare tool or contact your local Medicare office for a list of acupuncture providers who accept Medicare assignment.

Are there any costs or limitations associated with Medicare acupuncture coverage?

Medicare Part B typically covers 80% of the Medicare-approved amount for acupuncture services after you’ve met your deductible. However, you may still be responsible for the remaining 20% coinsurance and any excess charges. Some Medicare Advantage plans may have different cost-sharing requirements.

What other alternative health options does Medicare cover?

In addition to acupuncture, Medicare may cover other alternative health options such as chiropractic services, naturopathy, and therapeutic massage. Coverage may vary depending on the specific Medicare plan.

What should I consider when choosing a Medicare plan that covers acupuncture?

When selecting a Medicare plan, consider your individual health needs, the availability of acupuncture providers in your area, and the specific acupuncture coverage and cost-sharing policies of each plan.