Does TRICARE Cover Medical Alert Systems?

Medical alert systems ensure a quick response in case of emergency and provide seniors’ with peace of mind. Unfortunately, TRICARE doesn’t cover the cost of a medical alert system. Seniors will either need to use other insurance plans to cover the cost of their device or purchase a device outright.

What Does TRICARE Cover?

TRICARE is a health insurance plan for current military personnel, veterans and their dependents. It contributes to the cost of certain medical care and medically necessary treatments. Durable medical equipment is covered by TRICARE, but only if that equipment is prescribed by a doctor and the equipment itself improves, restores or maintains a function or prevents a condition from getting worse.

TRICARE doesn’t cover medical supplies for the purposes of safety, such as rails or grips for the bathrooms or medical alert systems. Such safety supplies aren’t classed as medically necessary.

What Health Insurance Policies Might Cover Medical Alert Systems?

Seniors who receive Medicare Advantage Part A and Part B might have the cost of a medical alert system covered by their plan. Original Medicare doesn’t cover medical alert devices, however. Commercial health insurance providers can set their own policies regarding what is and isn’t covered, so seniors with non-Medicare policies should contact their plan providers to find out if medical alert devices are included in their coverage.

Other Ways to Save on the Cost of Medical Alert Systems

Veterans and members of senior organizations such as the USAA and AARP may be eligible for discounts from some of the best medical alert system providers, such as Bay Alarm Medical and Philips Lifeline. Owners of ADT security devices may qualify for a discount on the brand’s own medical alert devices.

Couples looking for a device for each person should shop around and check how much it costs to add another device on a standard plan. Some providers allow users to add a second device for a one-time fee, offering substantial savings compared to paying two sets of monthly monitoring fees.