Does Medicare cover adult diapers?

Does Medicare cover adult diapers? Original Medicare does not. Your Medicare Advantage plan might, but you will need to check your policy to make sure. Other organizations can offer financial assistance for adult diapers and incontinence pads. Read more below to learn about options within your community.

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D. Gilson is a writer and author of essays, poetry, and scholarship that explore the relationship between popular culture, literature, sexuality, and memoir. His latest book is Jesus Freak, with Will Stockton, part of Bloomsbury’s 33 1/3 Series. His other books include I Will Say This Exactly One Time and Crush. His first chapbook, Catch & Release, won the 2012 Robin Becker Prize from Seve...

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years

UPDATED: Dec 26, 2020

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The Highlights

  • Original Medicare does not cover adult diapers. Medicare Advantage may cover them, but you should check your policy.
  • There are other organizations that can help pay for adult diapers.

Does Medicare cover adult diapers? Original Medicare does not cover adult diapers or incontinence pads. However, Medicare Advantage may, and there are places you can go for help paying with these items. We’ll discuss these options below.

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Does Medicare cover adult diapers?

Original Medicare does not cover adult diapers or incontinence pads, which means you have to pay for them entirely with your own money. Medigap insurance plans will not cover this, since there is no portion being paid by original Medicare.

Some Medicare Advantage plans may cover adult diapers or incontinence pads as an extra benefit, but you will need to contact your policyholder to ask.

You may also get coverage by Medicare to help discover the underlying cause of incontinence issues, such as if you see a healthcare provider. However, you will still have some out-of-pocket expenses, such as your health care deductible.

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Who pays for adult diapers?

There are a few different third parties who can help pay for adult diapers.

The Veterans’ Administration Health Care will pay for adult diapers. There are some complaints about quality. However, if you can get a doctor to give a medical reason as to why you need a different (higher-quality) brand, the VA will cover it for you.

Home and Community Based Services (Veterans Directed Care) provides financial assistance to veterans in a way that the veteran sees fit. Therefore, if they believe their adult diapers or incontinence pads are a high priority, this could be an option to help pay for them.

Medicaid will cover adult diapers for individuals living in a nursing home. For those not living in a nursing home, Medicaid waivers may cover them. However, the requirements (such as brand or quantity) will vary by state, so you should check with your Medicaid office.

Some areas have diaper banks, which are non-profit organizations that provide other organizations with diapers for the community. You can find a list of diaper banks here.

The Bottom Line

Original Medicare does not cover adult diapers. Medicare Advantage may cover adult diapers, but you will need to contact your policyholder to make sure.

There are other organizations that can help pay for these items, such as the VA, Veterans Directed Care, Medicaid, and diaper banks.

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