Coverage

Does Medicare Cover Grab Bars?

While Original Medicare does not currently cover grab bars, some Medicare Advantage plans may cover grab bars in home bathrooms.

Some Medicare Advantage plans (Medicare Part C) cover grab bars in home bathrooms, as well as other home health services such as meal delivery and non-emergency transportation.

Woman using a grab bar

What durable medical equipment is covered by Medicare Part B?

Although some Medicare Advantage plans cover grab bars, Original Medicare (Part A and Part B) does not typically cover grab bars, as they are not considered durable medical equipment (DME).

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Durable medical equipment (which can include things like walkers, canes and chair lifts) is typically covered by Medicare Part B, as long as it is considered medically necessary by a doctor.

To be considered durable medical equipment, an item must meet the following criteria:

  • It must be used in your home
  • It must be used for a medical reason
  • It must be able to withstand repeated use
  • It must have an expected lifetime of at least three years

It is also important to find out if your DME suppliers accept Medicare assignment.

Suppliers that don’t accept assignment can charge you any amount for equipment, which could increase how much you end up paying out of pocket for your DME.

Examples of durable medical equipment

Some examples of durable medical equipment include:

  • Blood sugar monitors
  • Hospital beds
  • Commode chairs
  • Crutches
  • Nebulizers and nebulizer medications
  • Oxygen equipment
  • Manual wheelchairs and powered mobility devices
  • Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines and other devices to treat sleep apnea

You can find more examples of Medicare-covered durable medical equipment on the Medicare.gov website.

How much you could pay for durable medical equipment

If your DME supplier accepts assignment, you typically pay 20% of the Medicare approved amount, and Medicare Part B pays 80% after your Part B deductible is met.

In 2021, the Part B deductible is $203 per year.

Keep in mind that Medicare covers different kinds of durable medical equipment in different ways. Depending on the type of equipment, you may need to rent or buy the equipment.

How do I enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan that covers grab bars?

To learn more about Medicare Advantage plans in your area that may cover grab bars, you can speak with a licensed insurance agent. Find out more about the benefits you may be able to receive and compare the costs of plans that are offered where you live.

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Or call 1-800-557-6059 (TTY: 711) speak with a licensed insurance agent. We accept calls 24/7!

Christian

About the author

Christian Worstell is a licensed insurance agent and a Senior Staff Writer for MedicareAdvantage.com. He is passionate about helping people navigate the complexities of Medicare and understand their coverage options.

His work has been featured in outlets such as Vox, MSN, and The Washington Post, and he is a frequent contributor to health care and finance blogs.

Christian is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He currently lives in Raleigh, NC.

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