Breastfeeding is not only beneficial for the baby but also for the mother. It promotes bonding, boosts the baby’s immunity, and reduces the risk of certain diseases such as cancer. However, it can be challenging for working mothers who need to pump their milk and store it for later use.
Fortunately, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), insurance companies are required to cover breastfeeding equipment and services, including breast pumps. Medicaid is a public insurance program that provides health coverage for low-income individuals and families. So, if you’re a Medicaid beneficiary who needs a breast pump, you may be eligible for coverage.
In this guide, we will explain everything you need to know about getting a breast pump through insurance Medicaid.
What is a Breast Pump?
A breast pump is a device that allows lactating mothers to express milk from their breasts. There are two types of breast pumps: manual and electric. Manual pumps require hand power while electric pumps run on batteries or electricity.
Breast pumps can aid in establishing and maintaining milk supply by allowing mothers to increase milk production. They can also help alleviate engorgement or pain caused by overfull breasts.
Difference Between Manual and Electric Breast Pumps
Manual breast pumps:
- Are less expensive than electric ones.
- Are usually smaller in size than electric ones.
- Are quieter than electric ones.
- Require more effort as mothers need to manually operate the pump handle.
Electric breast pumps:
- Are more expensive than manual ones.
- Can pump milk faster than manual ones.
- Offer adjustable suction settings for comfortable pumping experience.
- Allow hands-free operation with hands-free bras or pumping bustiers.
Why Choose an Electric Breast Pump Over a Manual One?
While there are advantages to using both types of breast pumps, an electric one may be more beneficial in some situations:
Time constraint: Electric pumps are faster at expressing milk than manual ones. If you have limited time to pump, an electric one can help you maximize your pumping session.
Comfort: Electric pumps offer adjustable suction settings that enable mothers to find the most comfortable suction level for them.
Frequency of use: If you plan to pump frequently, an electric pump may be a better choice since it requires less effort and saves time.
Breast Pump Coverage under Insurance Medicaid
Under the ACA, insurance companies are required to provide breastfeeding equipment and services, including breast pumps, without cost-sharing. This means that Medicaid beneficiaries must have access to breast pumps without paying out-of-pocket costs.
However, the exact details of coverage may vary depending on the state where you live. Some states only cover manual breast pumps while others cover both manual and electric ones.
In some cases, Medicaid may require prior authorization before covering a breast pump. You or your healthcare provider will need to fill out a form or submit a prescription for a breast pump.
To find out what type of breast pump is covered under your Medicaid plan in your state, call your Medicaid provider or check their website.
How to Get a Breast Pump through Insurance Medicaid
Getting a breast pump through insurance Medicaid requires some steps:
Contact Your Healthcare Provider: Talk to your doctor or midwife about getting a breast pump. They can provide guidance on what type of pump is best suited for you and your baby’s needs.
Check with Your Medicaid Provider: Call your local Medicaid office or visit their website to find out what types of breast pumps are covered under your plan and if prior authorization is necessary.
Choose a Supplier: Once you have determined which type of breast pump is covered by your plan, choose a supplier from the list provided by your Medicaid provider.
Submit Paperwork: Your supplier will require paperwork from you and your healthcare provider before processing the order for a breast pump. This may include prescriptions, medical records, or insurance information.
Wait for Approval: After submitting the necessary paperwork, wait for approval from your Medicaid provider before the supplier can deliver the breast pump to your home.
Receive Your Breast Pump: Once approved, your supplier will ship or deliver the breast pump to your home.
Alternate Routes to Obtain a Breast Pump
If you encounter any difficulties getting a breast pump through insurance Medicaid, there are alternate routes you may take:
WIC: Women, Infants and Children (WIC) is a federal assistance program that provides nutritional support for pregnant women and children up to age five. Some WIC offices offer breast pumps to eligible beneficiaries free of charge.
Hospital-grade Rentals: If you need a hospital-grade breast pump but cannot afford to buy one, rental options are available at most hospitals.
Discount Programs: Some suppliers offer discount programs that allow you to purchase a breast pump at reduced prices if it’s not fully covered by insurance Medicaid.
If you’re a Medicaid beneficiary in need of a breast pump, there’s good news. Thanks to the ACA, breastfeeding equipment and services are now covered without cost-sharing by insurance companies including those under Medicaid. However, coverage details may vary depending on your state of residence.
To ensure that you receive accurate information about what type of breast pump is covered under your plan and how to obtain one through insurance Medicaid, contact your healthcare provider and local Medicaid office. It’s important to prioritize your health and well-being as well as that of your baby’s during this time.
Can I get a breast pump through my Medicaid insurance?
Yes, you can get a breast pump through your Medicaid insurance.
What kind of breast pumps does Medicaid cover?
Medicaid covers both manual and electric breast pumps.
How do I know if I’m eligible for a free breast pump through Medicaid?
Your eligibility depends on your state’s regulations and the type of Medicaid plan you have. Contact your Medicaid provider to find out if you’re eligible.
Can I choose any brand of breast pump with my Medicaid coverage?
It depends on what your state’s regulations are. Some states only cover certain brands of breast pumps. Check with your provider to see what options are available to you.
How do I go about getting a breast pump through my Medicaid insurance?
You must first get a prescription from your doctor or lactation consultant. Then, contact your Medicaid provider to find out how to order the breast pump.
Am I limited to one breast pump per pregnancy with my Medicaid coverage?
It depends on the state’s regulations and the type of plan you have. Some plans allow for multiple pumps per pregnancy, while others only cover one. Check with your provider for specifics.
How long will it take to receive my breast pump once ordered through my Medicaid insurance?
This varies depending on the state and provider, but typically takes 2-4 weeks after ordering.
Will my breastfeeding class be covered by my Medicaid insurance as well?
Some states may offer classes as part of their coverage, so check with your provider to see what options are available to you.
Can I upgrade or purchase additional parts for my provided breast pump through my Medicaid coverage?
Typically no, but it depends on the state’s regulations and your plan. Check with your provider for specifics.
How long can I keep my breast pump with my Medicaid coverage?
The length of time you can use the breast pump varies depending on the state’s regulations and your specific plan. Generally, most plans allow for 6-12 months of use.