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Will Medicare Pay for a Lift Chair


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?

Typically, you’ll pay somewhere around $350 for the lifting mechanism of the lift chair after Medicare pays their portion. There’s also a deductible that falls under Part B. However, if you have a Medigap plan, the above cost-sharing may be covered 100%.

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.

FAQs

Will Medicare Pay for a Sleep Chair?
Medicare covers the specific lift mechanism for a lift chair or “sleep chair.” Most models of lift chairs can recline flat, and for patients who need to sleep with legs elevated, these lift chairs are a perfect match.
Does Medicare Pay for Lift Chair Recliners?
Since Medicare will only cover the lift mechanism, patients will be responsible for the extra chair features, including the reclining device.
Does Medicare cover Lazy Boy Lift Chairs?
Since Medicare covers only the lift mechanism of the chair, beneficiaries can choose to pay out of pocket for specific seats, whether it be a Lazy Boy brand or another brand.

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.

Lindsay Malzone

Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare expert for MedicareFAQ. She has been working in the Medicare industry since 2017. She is featured in many publications as well as writes regularly for other expert columns regarding Medicare. You can also find her over on our Medicare Channel on YouTube as well as contributing to our Medicare Community on Facebook.

12 thoughts on “Will Medicare Pay for a Lift Chair

  1. I have cal medi-connect (dual medicare/medical) coverage, how do I look into getting a lift chair lazy boy?

    1. Hi Timothy! The content on this page explains which parts of Medicare will cover a lift chair.

    1. Hi Eva! Each Medicare Advantage carrier has its own summary of benefits. You would need to contact your carrier directly to find out if they will have a lift chair.

    1. Hi Iris! If your doctor deems the mattress as medically necessary, it would fall under Part B in the Durable Medical Equipment category.

    1. Hi Evelyn. You would need to check with the Durable Medical Equipment lift provider to see if they are Medicare-approved. If so, they will know if Medicare will cover just the lift or require you to purchase an entire lift chair.

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