Medicare covers about 80% of the costs of prosthetics, and does not consider computerized prosthetic devices to be experimental. The Veterans Affairs Department provides coverage for prosthetics without limits. But many private insurers are not nearly as generous, so patients and prosthetic device companies are mounting an effort to get them to boost their coverage, reports the Washington Post.

June 10, 2008

1 Min Read
Private Insurers' Coverage for Prosthetics Is Often Inadequate

Efforts are underway to get Congress and state legislatures to mandate private insurers to offer fuller coverage. Many carriers lump prosthetics into the durable medical equipment category, equating them to walkers and crutches.Simple prosthetics can cost as little as $3000, but more sophisticated ones can cost up to $40,000, which the average person denied coverage likely cannot afford. Insurance companies argue that expanding coverage would drive up prices. But according to the Amputee Coalition of America, in six states that passed laws expanding coverage for prosthetics, the average premium increased just 12-25 cents per month.Government mandates aren't always the best solution, but in this case, that may be what it takes to achieve a more sensible policy.

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