Durable medical equipment is a term used to describe medical supplies that a person needs temporarily while recovering from an injury or an illness. This equipment can be a walker or wheelchair, a bed, or even an oxygen tank and supplies. Learn what to expect when your doctor prescribes you durable medical equipment, or DME, so you can be prepared to get well.
Know what your insurance will cover
Many insurance companies will only cover the basics of durable medical equipment, such as a standard wheelchair or crutches. They will cover the medical needs you have as long as your doctor deems it necessary and you have a prescription for it. In any case, you need to talk to your health insurance provider as soon as you receive a prescription for any kind of medical equipment in your home to make sure they will help you cover the costs. Some insurances will only cover medical equipment in the home that is not permanent, which means if you need hand rails, raised toilet seats, or other permanent fixtures, you may have to pay out of pocket even if they are recommended by your doctor.
Where to get your equipment
When your doctor prescribes you medical equipment, this typically means you have to pick up what you need or have it delivered to you from a medical supply facility. Most hospitals do not rent wheelchairs and other supplies out. If you do not know a facility where you can rent equipment from, the hospital may be able to refer you to a company who can supply them to you. These companies will usually deliver larger pieces of equipment, such as oxygen tanks and medical beds, and also show you how to use them.
When you need help
If your medical equipment ever breaks, it's up to you to contact the medical supply store for repairs or replacement. Your doctor cannot fix these kinds of issues for you. If you are having issues with the type of equipment you have, however, your doctor can reevaluate your needs and prescribe you something different. The medical supply store that delivers your equipment cannot change or exchange your supplies for different models without your doctor's permission.
As you overcome an injury or illness, you may need durable medical equipment to help you recover. Your doctor can prescribe you the supplies you need so your insurance company and medical supply store can provide you what you need. For more information, contact a company like Lincoln Mobility.