How Long Will Medicare Pay for Rehab?

Life has a funny way of sneaking up on us. It throws us curveballs that we aren’t prepared to deal with, and, sometimes accidents just happen. No matter if it’s the will of the universe or simply just an unhappy accident, at certain times we are faced with a period of rehabilitation. While the thought of a growing pile of bills is enough to strike fear into the most fearless among us, the good news is that Medicare will help to pay for some of the costs of rehab, for those with Medicare, if you need it. But how much will they help with exactly?

After you have been in the hospital for at least three days, that’s when Medicare’s Part A coverage starts to kick in, and it covers the first 100 days in a benefit period. Just so you know, that benefit period begins as soon as you get to the hospital. It ends when you haven’t gotten any hospital or medical care for 60 days. The rate at which they’ll pay is as follows:

  • The first 20 days are covered at 100%
  • For the subsequent 80 days, you are required to pay a daily copayment

I can hear you asking now, “But what if I’m in the hospital for another three days after the first benefit period? What do I do then?”

I’m glad you asked. If that is the case, then fear not! A new benefit period starts after the next three days, and the process starts all over again. They aren’t going to just up and drop you because you have a new medical condition; you can have as many benefit periods as you need to feel better again. So, now you can breathe a little easier.

As you know, rehab is a program that can help you recover in the event of injury or illness. Some of the reasons you might require rehabilitation include:

  • You’ve had a stroke or suffer from another type of paralysis
  • You’ve got an injury that makes even everyday tasks difficult to accomplish
  • You’ve recently had surgery
  • You suffer from a vision problem, like blindness

When you enter rehab, chances are good that it’ll be a rough first few times. Most hate the thought of having to relearn some or all of the things that once came so easily. However, if you can look at it from the point of a new experience in learning how to do things a different way than before, you may be able to find some good in an otherwise less than ideal situation. Here are some of the things you might learn new ways of doing:

  • Eat, cook, dress, or bathe
  • Exercise in order to improve strength and balance
  • Improve your ability to remember things or problem-solve
  • Listen, read, speak, and write

Getting to the point of being fully rehabilitated is a long and difficult road, but if you can keep at it, you may find a strength in yourself that you never knew you had, and you’ll be so much better for having come through strong in the end. Medicare will help you to cover some of the costs you’ll need to get there, and that’s something you can be happy about.