Medicaid Funding for Power Wheelchairs

Man in a power chair speaking to woman at dining room table.

Overview

Medicaid is the largest program designed to provide medical and health-related services to people with low incomes and pay for covered medical services. Medicaid may cover a power wheelchair if the patient meets eligibility and coverage requirements. Title 19 of the Social Security Act is a program that provides medical assistance for certain individuals and families with low incomes and resources. The Medicaid program is funded through a cooperative venture between the Federal and State governments. Within broad national guidelines which the Federal government provides, each of the States: 

  • establishes its own eligibility standards;
  • determines the type, amount, duration, and scope of services;
  • sets the rate of payment for services; and
  • administers its own program.
Female physician attending senior woman

Assistive technology devices, such as a motorized wheelchair, may be covered as Durable Medical Equipment (DME) under this program. 

Eligibility Requirements

 To qualify for Medicaid, an individual must meet income and resource limits, and be medically needy or fall into an eligibility category specified by your state. Anyone receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits is automatically eligible in some states. Medicaid will only pay for a motorized wheelchair if the individual has a medical need for the specific type of electric wheelchair he or she needs. There must also be a doctor’s prescription. Power wheelchairs can be covered as DME under Medicaid; however, coverage varies from state to state. Some of these variations include: 

  • Coverage for outdoor, vocational use;
  • Coverage for skilled nursing homes;
  • Coverage for accessories (some states have age limitations for coverage);
  • Whether the power wheelchair can be purchased or rented; and
  • Some states require physical therapy reports or special forms to be completed

To apply for Medicaid, please visit your local state Medicaid agency.

4 thoughts on “Medicaid Funding for Power Wheelchairs

    1. Hi Leroy!

      Thank you for reaching out to us, Medicare covers only the “seat lift” mechanism portion of the chair. However, the specific Medicaid plan may or may not cover what Medicare does not fund. The best way to find out what exactly is covered is to contact her Medicaid plan. Please let me know if you need any additional information, always happy to help!

      Best Regards,
      Amanda

  1. I just need a simple scooter till surgery I pray left leg shorter than right leg from car wreck n bent hardware?

    1. Hi Cheryl!

      i’m happy you reached out to us, I’ll be glad to help point you in the right direction. To find a dealer near you please visit this link and enter in your zip code or address, you’ll see a list of authorized Pride Mobility dealers near you. https://www.pridemobility.com/find-a-dealer.asp

      We have a few scooters like the Go-Go Elite Traveller that are easy to transport and disassemble to fit into most vehicles, you can view a few of the models here: https://www.pridemobility.com/go-go-travel-mobility/models.asp

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