Many people might assume that private insurance companies offer more generous health insurance benefits than Medicare. NOT SO! For example, many private plans limit the number of prosthetic or orthotic devices (for example, artificial limbs and orthopedic braces) that an insured can be provided under the plan. Typically, the plan might limit the insured person to one prosthesis no matter how long that person will be an insured. Medicare has no such limitation.
People are not lizards. We can’t regenerate limbs. Limb-loss lasts a lifetime. Orthoses and prostheses simply wear out faster than the human body.
Eighteen states have passed laws requiring private insurance plans to offer orthotic and prosthetic benefits equal to Medicare. The Minnesota Legislature will again consider an orthotic and prosthetic parity bill in the upcoming legislative session.
The effects on the Minnesota state budget of an O&P parity law should be negligible. In fact, the Director of the Texas Legislative Budget Board found that a prosthetic parity law there offered “cost savings to the state.”
To find out more information, visit Prosthetic and Orthotic Parity for Minnesota.