Mobility Exams are Crucial to Receiving Medicare for Mobility Devices
If you plan on applying Medicare towards your new scooter or electric wheelchair, scheduling a mobility exam should be one of the most important things on your to-do list. Your mobility exam will open up the door to Medicare assistance, which can cover up to 80% of initial costs. Almost as importantly, it will give consultants the information they need to help determine the best powered mobility devices, or PMDs, for you.
Mobility exams can be given by given by physicians or qualified treating practitioners, and must almost always take place face-to-face. The only time an exception to this rule can be made is if you’ve stayed in a hospital within the last 45 days. If that is the case, then your examining physicians may be able to prescribe a PMD on your behalf. Otherwise, you’ll need to make an appointment to get checked out.
What to Expect from Your Mobility Exam
When you arrive for your mobility exam, it’s only natural to feel apprehensive. Doctor’s visits can always be a little nerve-wracking beforehand; but in this case, there really is nothing to worry about. The exam itself will likely consist mainly of an interview and a brief analysis of prior medical records. If your doctor is worried about your stability or other issues, he may also conduct some brief tests. But by and large, your mobility exam will be about discussing your needs and capabilities.
A significant part of the interview will focus on your physical abilities. The doctor will do his best to determine whether a PMD is right for you, or if you’d benefit more from some other form of assistance. For example, if your doctor thinks you’re strong enough to handle a manual wheelchair or walker, he may recommend one instead. Or if he feels that you may not have the eyesight or strength to operate a PMD, he may want to look at other solutions before writing a prescription. However, if you are of stable mind and body, but find using non-electronic mobility aids taxing, it’s likely he’ll agree that a PMD is right for you.
If your doctor thinks you’re a good candidate for a PMD, he’ll then shift gears to determining which best suits your lifestyle. Be prepared to answer detailed questions about your daily routine and living quarters. He’ll want to know if your home is large enough to operate an electric wheelchair in, and whether a mobility scooter would help you accomplish tasks outside the home. He may also ask if you have any kind of caretaker at home who can help you with your electric wheelchair or scooter. Whatever questions your Doctor asks, just remember to answer honestly. Your physician only wants to help you improve your quality of life, and the more honestly you two are able to talk, the more he’ll be able to help you find a mobility solution that’s right for you.