So what are some of the services Medicare doesn’t cover?
Original Medicare covers a wide variety of health care services, certainly Original Medicare doesn’t cover everything. If you decide you need or want certain services that aren’t covered, you’ll have to pay for them yourself unless you have other insurance. Always be certain tests and screenings are covered before you have them done.
Below is a list of healthcare services generally not covered by Medicare.
Medicare doesn’t cover:
Alternative medicine: This includes acupuncture or chiropractic services (except to fix subluxation of the spine), and other types of alternative or complementary care.
Cosmetic surgery: Elective cosmetic procedures are not covered, however, certain surgeries may be if necessary to fix a malformation. For example, breast prostheses are covered if you had a mastectomy due to breast cancer.
Hearing: Routine hearing exams and hearing aids are not covered either, although some hearing implants to treat a severe hearing loss may be covered.
Foot care: Medicare does not cover most routine foot care, like the cutting or removing of corns and calluses, nor does it pay for most orthopedic shoes or other foot supports (orthotics). Medicare will, however, cover foot injuries or diseases like hammertoes, bunion deformities and heel spurs, along with foot exams and treatments if you have diabetes-related nerve damage.
Long-term care: Which includes nursing home care, the costs of assisted living facilities and adult day care. Medicare does, however, help pay up to 100 days of skilled nursing or rehabilitation care immediately following a three-day inpatient hospital stay.
Non-emergency services: Medicare does not pay for copies of X-rays or most non-emergency transportation including ambulance services.
Overseas coverage: In most cases, health care you receive outside of the United States, Medicare doesn’t cover.
Personal care: The cost of hiring help for bathing, toileting and dressing are not covered unless you are homebound and also are receiving skilled nursing care. Housekeeping services, such as shopping, meal preparation and cleaning, are not covered either unless you are receiving hospice care.
Routine dental and vision care: Medicare will not cover routine dental checkups, cleanings, fillings or dentures. Nor do they cover routine vision care like eye exams, eye refractions, contact lenses or eyeglasses — except when following cataract surgery.
The best way to find out if Medicare covers a service or exam that you might need is to talk to your doctor or other health care provider. Or, visit medicare.gov and use the search option, type in your test item, or service, to get a breakdown of what is and isn’t covered.
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