Medicare Coverage of Walking Canes
What It Is
Rental or purchase of a cane
Medicare Part B pays for the rental or purchase of a cane to help with support while walking. It does not cover white canes for the blind. In order for Medicare Part B to cover a cane, the patient must have a prescription for it from a doctor, and it must be rented or bought from a Medicare-certified medical equipment supplier.
If you have a Medicare Part C Medicare Advantage plan: Medicare Part C Medicare Advantage plans, also called Medicare Advantage plans, must cover everything that's included in original Medicare Part A and Part B coverage. But sometimes a Part C plan covers more, with extra services or an expanded amount of coverage. (Co-payments for Part C plans may also be different than those for Part A or Part B.) To find out whether your plan provides extra coverage or requires different co-payments for a walking cane, contact the plan directly.
What Medicare Pays
Medicare Part B pays 80 percent of the Medicare-approved amount for rental or purchase of the cane.
Important: Regardless of the rules regarding any particular type of care, in order for Medicare Part A, Medicare Part B, or a Medicare Part C plan to provide coverage, the care must meet two basic requirements:
The care must be "medically necessary." This means that it must be ordered or prescribed by a licensed physician or other authorized medical provider, and that Medicare (or a Medicare Part C plan) agrees that the care is necessary and proper. For help getting your care covered, see FAQ: How Can I Increase the Odds That Medicare Will Cover My Medical Service?
The care must be performed or delivered by a healthcare provider who participates in Medicare.