Have you wanted to know if Medicare covers cochlear implants?
This article is a quick guide to what cochlear implants are, whether Medicare covers them, the eligibility criteria for Medicare cochlear implants, and how much is covered.
What are Cochlear Implants?
Cochlear implants are surgically implanted small electronic medical devices to help give sound signals to the brain for a person with a damaged inner ear, serious hearing problems, or who is deaf. A cochlear implant includes a microphone, a speech processor, a transmitter and simulator, and an electrode array.
Both young children and adults can use cochlear implants. Research has shown that one-third of 65 years old and above suffer from hearing loss. This problem could lead to depression, depletion in physical health, isolation, and sudden death.
Even though a cochlear implant doesn't restore normal hearing to the deaf, it can aid the understanding of sounds in the environment and speech.
Who is Eligible for Medicare Cochlear Implants?
- To be eligible for Cochlear implants, you must suffer from a severe hearing problem in one or both of your ears.
- You must be registered on Medicare.
- Cochlear implants must be recommended by your doctor, who is also enrolled in Medicare.
- You have no medical issues that could put you in danger during surgery.
- You have no middle ear infection.
Which Medicare Part Covers Medicare Cochlear Implant?
Medicare Part B, a part of the original Medicare, covers cochlear implants and the accessories like microphones and batteries when your doctor recommends it. Likewise, Medicare Part C, a Medicare Advantage Plan, covers cochlear implants and many other benefits that Medicare Part B does not cover.
These benefits include out-of-pocket spending limits each year, which reduces the amount you spend on Medicare costs annually. Medicare Part A and B do not offer this.
Why Does Medicare Cover Cochlear Implants?
That's simple. Medicare covers cochlear implants because they are a standard treatment for severe nerve deafness. Medicare has been covering for cochlear implants since 2004, and several health insurance companies also cover cochlear implants.
How Much Does Medicare Cover?
Without health Insurance coverage such as Medicare, Cochlear implants cost $30,000 to $50,000 on average.
However, Medicare reduces the cost of cochlear implants by 75 to 80 percent. Therefore, the cost is further reduced if you have supplement insurance, such as Medicaid or a Medigap policy.
It is worth noting that there may be some out-of-pocket expenses you need to make which are not included in what Medicare covers.
If you qualify for Medicare but don't know where to start, we have licensed insurance agents ready to answer your questions and help you enroll in Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement Insurance, and Prescription Part D plans.
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The cost of a Cochlear implant and how much Medicare covers also varies based on factors such as your doctor's charges, the cost of purchasing the device and where you bought it, facilities used, etc.