Lift chairs are classed as durable medical equipment. This means they’re partly covered by Medicare, but claimants are expected to cover approximately 20% of the cost of the chair, plus any accessories such as cushions or covers, themselves. Seniors who receive social security payments may be able to get 100% of the cost of a lift chair covered through Medicaid.
Lift chairs help seniors who struggle to get in and out of chairs themselves. For some older adults, a lift chair could be the difference between being able to remain in their lifelong home or having to downsize or move to an assisted living facility. Installing a lift chair can be expensive, but there are some Social Security and Medicaid benefits that can help with the cost.
Supplemental Security Income is a cash benefit administered by the SSA that is paid to low-income individuals, seniors and those who are blind or living with a disability. SSI is a cash benefit, and seniors can use the payment for anything they wish, including day-to-day living expenses or offsetting the cost of assisted living.
Many eligible for SSI are also eligible for food assistance and other support programs such as Medicaid and state-specific Medicaid waivers. This means seniors who receive SSI may receive significant discounts on health care, durable medical equipment and other support.
Most SSI recipients are eligible for Medicaid. This is a means-tested program that helps those living on a low income offset the cost of health care. Medicaid recipients receive assistance with the premiums and deductibles associated with Medicare, which means they may be able to have 100% of the costs of a lift chair covered if the chair is medically necessary and has been prescribed by a health care professional.
Seniors hoping to have the cost of a lift chair covered by their benefits must make sure the chair they purchase is from an approved supplier and that their prescription clearly states why the features of that chair make it necessary. In most cases, a lift chair will only be covered if the senior is incapable of standing up from a regular chair but can walk (even if assisted by a cane or walker) once they are standing. A senior who requires a wheelchair or scooter for general mobility is not likely to be eligible for financial aid for a lift chair.