Does Medicare cover cancer screenings, chemo & radiation?

Does Medicare cover cancer screenings, chemo & radiation?

Medicare provides medically required equipment, facilities, and prescription medications for cancer treatment. Seniors are more at risk for the development of cancer. "60 percent of people who have cancer are 65 or older," according to

Medicare provides cancer treatment coverage for the following:

Hospital insurance (Part A)

Medical insurance (Part B)

Prescription drugs (Part D)


Medicare Part A

Hospital insurance for Medicare Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, including cancer treatments. For example, after a mastectomy, breast cancer can require surgically-implanted breast prostheses. Medicare Part A pays 80 percent of the cost of the surgery that occurs in an inpatient facility. Consequently, because you have a Medicare Supplement Plan, you pay the remaining 20 percent.

We at Medicare Service suggest Medigap Plan G, which covers 100% of the expense of your Medicare Part A.


Medicare Part B

Medicare Part B prescription insurance provides many outpatient facilities and medications for cancer-related services. In addition, Medicare Part B provides preventive facilities. You can get lung cancer and prostate cancer screenings, for instance.


Medicare Part B cancer treatment coverage involves chemotherapy medications in an outpatient clinic or doctor's office that are delivered into the vein. Also, Medicare Part B covers the following:


  • Radiation treatments in an outpatient clinic
  • Diagnostic tests such as X-rays and CT scans
  • Some oral chemotherapy treatments
  • Durable Medicare Equipment (DME) like wheelchairs and walkers


In addition, Medicare Part B includes outpatient procedures. Cancer surgery to remove a tumor, for example. To help you deal with these tough times, it also covers mental health services.


Does Medicare cover cancer treatment?


In patients with cancers of the head, neck, or esophagus, enteral nutrition equipment (feeding pump) can be used as a DME. Your doctor can recommend a feeding pump for use at home if you have problems with oral intake, to help you avoid malnutrition and recover from cancer care. Medicare pays 80 percent of the cost of feeding pumps "under the benefit of the prosthetic device."


Medicare Part D

Part D of Medicare includes chemotherapy and other drug therapies linked to cancer. No prescription medications are covered by Original Medicare. You must participate in either a Medicare Advantage Plan with drug coverage or a Medicare Part D plan in order to get drug coverage. Make sure the prescription includes the list of medications (formulary drugs) and review the medication levels when you participate in a drug plan.

To minimize your out-of-pocket prescription costs, read more about Part D tier costs. In addition, the Medicare Service will help you pick a prescription plan that saves you the most money each year.


Find A Plan



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