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Does Medicare Cover Neurostar?

Depression can be a burden that will affect how we do things every day. And, unfortunately, not all medications and treatments can be effective against depression, especially if it is severe.

Thought there is some good news. In severe cases of depression, TMS therapy looks to be a promising treatment. Neurostar’s treatments can help with treating severe cases of depression.

But does Medicare cover Neurostar therapy? Find out below along with what Neurostar treatments cost and other helpful info.

Does Medicare Cover Neurostar Therapy?

Yes, Medicare covers Neurostar therapy. It is covered by Medicare Part B and all Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part C plans. But ONLY if the beneficiary is diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder.

Also, you must meet at least one of the criteria before Medicare will cover Neurostar therapy:

  • Unable to tolerate the side effects of at least four antidepressants
  • Lack of effect of an antidepressant even after completing four trials
  • A record showing that he/she has an excellent response to TMS in a previous episode

However, these four things may limit the coverage Medicare offers for Neurostar treatments:

  • Having a history of seizures
  • Showing psychotic symptoms amid a depressive state
  • Suffering from epilepsy, cerebrovascular disease, dementia, increased intracranial pressure, or severe/repetitive head trauma

Also, keep in mind that in order to get coverage, the Neurostar therapy must be given by a Medicare-approved doctor.

How Much Does Neurostar Cost?

Without insurance, TMS therapy costs an average of $400 to $500 per session. For a full series of treatments (which most people need), the costs average around $11,000 but can go as high as $15,000.

If you don’t have Medicare, many private insurance plans will cover TMS therapy. So be sure to check with your insurance provider to find out about your coverage.

About Depression

Depression is a mental health disorder that is dangerous to any person. Over 300 million people in the world are suffering from this mental health disorder. Almost 16 million of those are in the United States. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is the number one cause of disability worldwide.

What is Neurostar?

Neurostar is a company that distributes a type of machine that dispenses Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) used for severe depression. TMS therapy is a procedure used as a last resort against depression if all other treatments do not work.

TMS is recommended for people who are suffering from Major Depressive Disorder. The magnetic fields are used to stimulate the nerve cells in our brain. More specifically, the magnetic fields stimulate parts of our brains responsible for our moods.

This is a non-invasive procedure to help battle against depression. A coil is placed on top of the patient’s head to deliver the magnetic pulses. Once activated, the machine will alter the brain’s chemistry, which reduces the symptoms of depression.

This kind of procedure does not use any chemicals either, and it only has a few, if any, side effects. The main one being minor headaches caused by magnetic pulses.

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 back braces?

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