There’s some Medicare coverage for lift chairs when the lift chair is deemed medically necessary. However, Medicare only covers the lifting mechanism, not the chair itself. These chairs can help people maneuver up and down from either a sitting position or a standing position. Individuals can control these devices to change places comfortably. We’ll go over what Medicare will and won’t cover regarding lift chairs below.
Medicare Coverage for Lift Chairs
Part B will cover the actual seat-lift mechanism only. To be considered medically necessary equipment, a doctor must indicate the chair for the patient’s specific health condition. Once the lift chair gets approval, Medicare covers 80% of the lifting mechanism. The beneficiary must pay the remaining 20%, plus the cost of the seat portion of the lift chair.
How to Determine if the Lift Chair is Medically Necessary:
- The patient can’t stand on their own from a regular chair
- Can operate the chair on their own
- Can walk independently or with a walker
- Suffers from severe arthritis
- Without the use of a chair, the patient suffers confinement to a bed
If the beneficiary is able to transfer from the lift chair directly to a wheelchair, that could prevent Medicare from approving the lifting mechanism as medically necessary. The lift chair mechanism won’t be covered through Medicare if a patient is residing within a skilled nursing facility, hospice, or nursing home facility.
Certification of Medical Necessity for Seat Lift Mechanisms – CMS-849
Your primary care physician must provide you with a prescription for the lift chair. Form CMS-849 must be completed and submitted to CMS.
How Much Will a Lift Chair Cost Me After Medicare Pays their Portion?
Medicare-Approved Lift Chair Dealers
It’s important to note that if you choose not to purchase a chair through a Medicare-approved supplier, Medicare will not cover the lifting mechanism. Healthcare providers can provide their patients with a list of local approved suppliers. The local Social Security office can also provide Medicare beneficiaries with updated listings of suppliers. Medicare.gov also can provide a full list of local suppliers.
Types of Lift Chairs
Lift chairs comprise of three different types of seats.
Two-Position Lift Chair – This chair is known to be the simplest of the three.
It reclines in two positions: A 90-degree upright position and a 45-degree position with an individual’s legs at an elevation and back at a recline.
Both the leg elevator and reclining motor are part of one engine, which enables the elevation of the leg support as the chair begins to recline.
Three-Position Lift Chair – The three-position chair offers a 45-degree reclined angle and an upright angle, like its two-position counterparts.
This chair’s reclining position offers an angle that lies almost entirely flat. The supine posture helps relieve pressure from the back.
All components of the chair are one moving motor, like the two-position chair.
Infinite-Position Lift Chair – The infinite position chair is the most adjustable of the three options.
These seats allow for sitting upright, lying flat, angling your back at a 45-degree angle, and elevating your legs.
These zero-gravity chairs operate by two motors and are typically the most expensive of the three chair options. These are, by far, the most flexible of the lift chairs.
How to Get Help Covering Lift Chair Mechanisms with Medicare
Since Medicare covers 80% of the cost of the lift chair mechanism, you’re left paying 20% out of pocket. Medicare Supplement plans will cover that 20%, leaving you with less or zero out of pocket costs. Contact our team today to find out more about supplemental Medicare options and how they save you money. Fill out an online rate form or call the number above! Our services are 100% free.