Hair loss is common with aging. However, it can also result from severe illness. For example, hair loss may occur during cancer treatment, specifically from radiation and chemotherapy.
There are also three types of hereditary hair loss such as:
- male-pattern baldness,
- female-pattern baldness,
- and androgenic alopecia.
If you are experiencing hair loss and are looking to try and regrow your hair, you are likely wondering “Does Medicare cover Hair Loss Treatment?” In this article, we answer the question in clear, plain English. You will also find the average hair loss treatment costs for those who don’t have insurance coverage.
Does Medicare Cover Hair Loss Treatment?
The short answer is usually no. In most cases, Medicare will not cover the cost of hair loss treatment.
Generally, Medicare does not provide coverage for cosmetic treatments, and hair loss treatment is usually considered to be cosmetic. Although as we mentioned, in some cases it is medical.
In that regard, there may be situations where you can get these costs covered. Below we’ll take a closer look at this to see when you might be able to get Medicare to pay for your hair loss treatment.
Original Medicare Coverage of Hair Loss Treatment
Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B) does not provide coverage for hair loss treatment. So that means you will have to pay 100 percent for your hair loss treatment.
Cosmetic surgeries are not covered since they are not medically necessary. Furthermore, Original Medicare will only provide coverage for hair loss treatment if it is medically necessary to treat the cause of baldness.
In rare cases, Original Medicare provides coverage for prescription medications to treat hair loss if it is administered in a doctor’s office or hospital outpatient setting. Coverage for this type of hair loss treatment is provided by Medicare Part B.
Original Medicare also does not provide coverage for wigs. Although wigs can boost a patient’s mental health, especially during cancer care, Original Medicare does not deem them as medically necessary procedures.
Medicare Advantage Coverage of Hair Loss Treatment
Similarly to Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans (Medicare Part C) typically will not cover hair loss treatment. Medicare Advantage plans are required to cover everything Original Medicare covers but will include some additional benefits too. However, what a Part C plan covers and what the out-of-pocket costs will be vary depending on the plan you have.
Some Medicare Advantage plans (Medicare Part C) do provide coverage for wigs for hair loss.
Be aware that neither Part C nor Part D plans that include prescription drug plans provide coverage for hair loss medications your healthcare provider may prescribe to you.
How Much Do Hair Loss Treatments Cost?
It is expensive to treat hair loss. Medications may cost hundreds of dollars. PRP injections cost $5,600 to $8,000. And getting a hair transplant costs from around $5,000 to over $10,000.
Although they are not treatment, wigs and extensions may be a less costly alternative for you. They typically cost at least $50 and can be as expensive as $2,000 depending upon the materials used.
Note: Medicare coverage changes all the time. And your specific coverage may vary from plan to plan for Medicare Advantage and Medigap plans. Always be sure to double check with your health care provider and/or Medicare insurance provider about what your plan covers and what it does not.
Additional Info on Medicare Coverage
This article is part of our series on “What does Medicare cover?”
Also, you can check out other articles in this series including: Does Medicare Cover Facial Feminization Surgery?