Reiki is a type of therapy that originally comes from Japan. It may be able to relieve stress and tension and some of the techniques are used to promote healing. However, despite its popularity, a lot of people are unaware as to whether it is covered by their health insurance plan; particularly Medicare.
At the moment, you can access reiki therapy on your Medicare health insurance but only if it is part of a wider set of treatments that are medically necessary.
In this article, we are going to be looking in more detail at whether this therapy is covered by Medicare and how you can access it.
What Is Reiki?
Reiki is a type of therapy that is performed holistically, meaning that rather than just working as physical therapy for the body, it also involves therapies for the mind and spirit. It comes from Japan and works on the basis that the person performing the therapies transmits energetic vibrations from their hands into the body of the recipient.
There are a great number of benefits to taking part in a session including relaxation, stress relief and a release of emotional blockages. Furthermore, as the energy flows through your body, natural healing may occur. It is often one of many techniques used alongside other medicines and types of treatment.
This treatment is so popular that it is believed that there are more than 4 million people are the world who have trained as a practitioner or are in training to become a practitioner. This is not surprising when we look at the evidence from studies that reiki has potential as a treatment.
What Is Medicare?
Medicare is a healthcare insurance plan provided by the federal government and is available to people who are over 65, have certain disabilities or have kidney failure. There are three parts of this insurance policy; Medicare part A includes coverage for a stay in the hospital, part B covers doctor services, outpatient services and preventative services and part C covers things like prescription drugs and vaccinations.
You will need to pay a monthly premium for part B and most people will automatically qualify for Medicare part A but there is an option to buy this if you do not qualify for this part of the plan.
Is It Therapy Covered By Medicare?
Therapies like this are considered to be complementary and alternative treatments that are not always medically necessary, therefore if you want to include this or other holistic treatments such as acupuncture in your healthcare plan, you must make sure that it is recommended by your health care provider as part of a larger care plan.
For example, if you will use this service during a stay in hospital and it is combined with medicines and other medical therapy, then it would be seen to be one of the complementary and alternative treatments and the costs would be covered by your health insurance company.
However, if you are covered by one of the Medicare advantage plans then this may give you insurance coverage for an alternative medicine or treatment plan or a wellness program such as having the insurance company cover the costs of a gym membership. However, there are still some services that are not considered to be medically necessary and therefore, you would not obtain coverage from your Medicare Advantage plan. Of course, this decision can be appealed.
The cost of Medicare Advantage Plans is around $144 per month, whereas the average alternative medicine treatment comes in at $70 for one appointment and the number of sessions you would need may depend on several factors, meaning that it might be more beneficial to opt for one of the Medicare Advantage plans.
That being said, you may be able to find sessions running at local community centers or with a nurse or practitioners who are studying the practice and will offer their services at a lower rate. In this case, it would be wise to assume that the services would not be covered by health insurance companies since this would be a choice rather than something that was included in recommended health plans.
What Health Plans Give Coverage For Alternative Medicine?
Alternative medicine or therapy can come in a variety of forms, the ancient Japanese healing we have discussed being one. However, you might also opt for massage therapy, acupuncture or herbal medicine and it is good to know whether you would get coverage for this with your insurance health plan.
Not all US citizens are entitled to take advantage of Medicare plans, but there are many insurance companies out there offering plans that are similar, or better than the original Medicare plans.
In order to find out whether alternative medicine is available on your plan, you will need to speak to an insurance agent; you can find the phone number on the company website. The insurance agent will likely explain that you will need to provide evidence that your doctor has recommended this therapy before you can put in any claims.
That being said, more and more insurers are becoming aware of the benefits of alternative medicine and the benefits of offering coverage for it. However, if there is not sufficient evidence to show that the type of medicine or therapy you are trying to get coverage for will have benefits for your condition, it is likely that your insurer will not provide the coverage you are asking for. One of the best options is Humana since this is one of the few insurance providers that offer all-round coverage which includes things like dental care, eyeglasses and alternative medicine.
Medicare is the main federal health insurance plan in the USA and offers various types of coverage to those who are over the age of 65, anyone with certain disabilities under the age of 65 and those with kidney failure. However, within the Medicare plans, there are sub plans that offer various types of coverage. For example, most will have insurance on the Medicare part B, as this requires monthly premium, but some people will also be covered by part A; if not there is an option to pay for this.
Medicare, and other insurance providers offer coverage for various medicine and therapies including seeing a doctor and prescription drugs or a stay in hospital. But what is unclear is whether this coverage extends ot alternative therapy such as reiki.
It is important to speak to your insurance agent to find out what coverage you can get but in most cases, these types of alternative services must form part of a larger healthcare plan. In order to find out what type of Medicare plans are on offer, you can visit their website for further information. Alternatively, you can look at other plans outside of the original Medicare plan and simply by entering your zip code, you will be given options based on your location and other factors.