Allergies seem to affect almost everyone these days. Whether it's due to a seasonal, environmental, food, or random occurrence, you may require allergy tests, shots, or medication at some point to help with your condition.
Allergy tests are classified as “clinical diagnostic laboratory services” by Medicare. Medicare Part B coverage may be available if you meet the criteria listed below.
If you meet all of the following criteria, Medicare Part B may cover allergy testing:
Medicare will not cover or pay for all allergy testing procedures. Always check with your health care provider and Medicare plan provider to see which tests are covered and how. Some tests that Medicare Part B does not cover may be covered by a Medicare Advantage plan, but you must ask your plan provider directly.
While Medicare Part B may cover clinical diagnostic laboratory tests such as allergy tests, a Medicare Advantage plan may cover additional or different tests. Again, you should inquire with your plan provider about what other tests or allergy services may be available, as well as how coverage works.
In general, Medicare Part B may cover the following allergy tests:
Food challenge testing – this test is only covered when performed as an outpatient to look for allergic reactions to specific foods.
Blood testing procedures – these analyze the presence of antibodies in your blood to detect allergens when your body comes into contact with them.
Skin (Percutaneous) procedures – these look for allergies to things like pollen or animal dander, food, insects, certain drugs, and more.
If you have any of the following symptoms, you should consult your primary care physician about allergy testing.
Skin that is dry, cracked, red, and irritated
Hives that are red, itchy, and persistently appear
Swelling of the lips, tongue, face, or eyes
Itchy, watery, or red eyes
Wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath
Sneezing with an itchy, runny nose or blocked nasal passages
Allergy Treatments Covered by Medicare
Many people can successfully manage their allergy symptoms while remaining active and healthy. Medication may be beneficial depending on your allergies. Some of your allergy prescriptions may be covered by Medicare Part D (or a Medicare Advantage plan with drug coverage). You should check with your insurance provider to see if your allergy medication is covered.
Medicare is covered only by home health care services prescribed by a physician and delivered by qualified nurses, although patients must meet strict eligibility criteria.
What is the easiest way to apply for Medicare? Well, you are in the right place! Most people were automatically enrolled and became eligible for Social Security when they turn to 65. We didn't need to apply for Medicare until President Reagan signed the legislation which raises the retirement age in 1983 and begins in 2003.
While eye care is a common need as we age, Medicare coverage is extremely restricted for most vision services. It is normally based on whether you encounter any medical problems that can impair your eyesight.
Many people believe that Medicare is free because, for much of their working life, you have paid into Medicare by taxes, but that assumption is not right.