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Does Medicare Cover Diabetic Supplies?

The simple answer is yes, Medicare covers some diabetic supplies.

Medicare Part B covers most outpatient medical costs. This includes diabetic testing supplies, such as:

  • Glucose test strips
  • Blood sugar testing monitors
  • Lancets
  • Glucose solution
  • Blood sugar control solutions
  • Therapeutic shoes or inserts

Part B also covers some diabetes services. These covered services include:

  • Yearly eye exam
  • Self-management training
  • Foot exam
  • Glaucoma tests

Avoid the Most Common Pitfalls When Buying Diabetic Supplies

While Part B helps these costs, you will still have to pay some costs out-of-pocket. First, the supplier must accept assignment, which means they accept the Medicare price as full payment. After your supplier accepts assignment, you will pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount.

Additionally, many people who are new to Medicare and/or diabetes care do not realize that in order for diabetic supplies to be covered by Medicare, a prescription is required from your doctor. If you buy diabetic supplies over-the-counter without a prescription, you have to pay full price.

Finally, you should purchase your diabetic supplies at the pharmacy counter (as opposed to the general retail counter) because the pharmacy has the ability to process the claim with Medicare. Keep in mind that Medicare will not pay for supplies if you go to a pharmacy that is not enrolled in Medicare.

Get Complete Insurance Coverage With a Medicare Supplement Plan

To ensure that your insurance covers the cost of diabetic supplies, such as diabetic meters, lancets, insulin, and test strips, we recommend enrolling in complete health insurance coverage, which includes:

  • Medicare Parts A and B
  • A good Medicare Part D plan
  • A Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plan

You can protect yourself from against high out-of-pocket costs by enrolling in a full coverage Medicare Supplement plan, such as the Medigap Plan F policy, which covers 100% of Medicare Part B excess charges. It is the most comprehensive Medicare Supplement plan because it covers all the gaps left by Medicare Parts A and B. You should not be required to pay any out-of-pocket costs if you have Medicare Parts A and B, Medicare Part D, and Medicare Supplement Plan F.

There are many other Medicare Supplement plans that offer varying levels of coverage. One of these plans might be the right plan for you.

How to Minimize Out-of-Pocket Costs When Buying Diabetic Supplies

In order to ensure that you don’t pay more for your diabetic supplies than necessary, there are a few things you need to do. You need to:

  • Have full coverage insurance (Medicare Parts A, B, D, and a Medicare Supplement plan)
  • A prescription from the doctor
  • Checkout at the pharmacy counter
  • Make sure that your pharmacy accepts Medicare assignment

Nothing on this website should ever be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always consult with your medical provider regarding diagnosis or treatment for a health condition, including decisions about the correct medication for your condition, as well as prior to undertaking any specific exercise or dietary routine.

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