How Many Days In Rehab Does Medicare Pay For? (Correct answer)

Medicare will pay for inpatient rehab for up to 100 days in each benefit period, as long as you have been in a hospital for at least three days prior. A benefit period starts when you go into the hospital and ends when you have not received any hospital care or skilled nursing care for 60 days.


What is the Medicare 100 day rule?

Medicare covers up to 100 days of care in a skilled nursing facility (SNF) each benefit period. If you need more than 100 days of SNF care in a benefit period, you will need to pay out of pocket. If your care is ending because you are running out of days, the facility is not required to provide written notice.

How many days does Medicare pay for skilled nursing?

Medicare covers care in a SNF up to 100 days in a benefit period if you continue to meet Medicare’s requirements.

Does Medicare cover 100 days of rehab?

Medicare covers inpatient rehab in a skilled nursing facility – also known as an SNF – for up to 100 days. Rehab in an SNF may be needed after an injury or procedure, like a hip or knee replacement.

What is the 60% rule in rehab?

The 60% Rule is a Medicare facility criterion that requires each IRF to discharge at least 60 percent of its patients with one of 13 qualifying conditions.

Can Medicare kick you out of rehab?

Standard Medicare rehab benefits run out after 90 days per benefit period. When you sign up for Medicare, you are given a maximum of 60 lifetime reserve days. You can apply these to days you spend in rehab over the 90-day limit per benefit period.

What happens when you run out of Medicare days?

Medicare will stop paying for your inpatient-related hospital costs (such as room and board) if you run out of days during your benefit period. To be eligible for a new benefit period, and additional days of inpatient coverage, you must remain out of the hospital or SNF for 60 days in a row.

What is the Medicare 3 day rule?

The 3-day rule requires the patient have a medically necessary 3-day-consecutive inpatient hospital stay. SNF extended care services are an extension of care a patient needs after a hospital discharge or within 30 days of their hospital stay (unless admitting them within 30 days is medically inappropriate).

Does Medicare Part A cover long term care?

Medicare doesn’t cover long-term care if that’s the only care you need. You pay 100% for non-covered services, including most long-term care. Instead, most long-term care is help with basic personal tasks of everyday life like bathing, dressing, and using the bathroom, sometimes called “activities of daily living.”

What is the criteria for inpatient rehab?

Rehabilitation Readiness Patient is willing and able to participate in a rehabilitation program. Patient must be able to participate in an intensive therapy program i.e., 3 hours per day, 5 to 6 days per week. Patients require two or more therapy disciplines. Patients require at least a five-day rehab stay.

Does Medicare pay for nursing home rehab?

You enroll in Medicare Part A when you turn 65 or if you have certain medical conditions. This is the portion of Medicare that will cover your skilled nursing facility stay, rehabilitation center stay, hospice care, and certain home health care services.

What is the difference between a nursing home and a rehab facility?

While nursing homes are looking for patients who need long-term or end-of-life care, rehabilitation centers are focused on helping residents transition back to their everyday lives.

What is considered short-term rehabilitation?

What is short-term rehabilitation? Short-term rehabilitation provides therapy for individuals recovering from a surgery, illness or accident. Generally, those needing short-term, in-patient rehabilitation may remain involved in their program at one of our facilities for as little as a couple of days to several weeks.

Can a rehab facility force you to stay?

Nobody can force you to remain in treatment. In some states, leaving court-mandated treatment is a felony. If you leave court-ordered rehab early, the drug treatment center is legally required to notify local authorities.

How Many Days Will Medicare Pay for Rehab?

Medicare reimburses a portion of the cost of inpatient rehabilitation treatments on a sliding scale basis. After you have met your deductible, Medicare can cover 100 percent of the cost of your first 60 days of care. After that, you will be charged a $341 co-payment for each day of treatment for the next 30 days. Stays that are longer than expected may count against your lifetime reserve days, beyond which you may be invoiced for the whole cost of your treatment.

What Is Rehab?

Rehabilitation is a type of inpatient therapy that many seniors get after being sent to the hospital. Depending on the severity of your injury or sickness and the tight coordination required between your doctor and caregivers, you may need to receive expert nursing care to recuperate after your first treatment is complete. This care may be provided at a skilled nursing facility (SNF) on its own, or you may be moved to a rehabilitation unit at the hospital where you were first treated. There are a variety of reasons why people enter rehab.

Nursing personnel may distribute your prescription, while facility caregivers assist you with personal care requirements and other activities of daily living in a comfortable environment.

While in rehabilitation, many patients undergo physical, occupational, and mental health therapy, as well as prosthetic or orthopedic equipment that can assist them in returning to their previous level of independence after leaving the institution.

Medicare Coverage for Rehab Services

In order to provide skilled nursing services to inpatients, the majority of your Medicare coverage is provided under the Part A inpatient benefit. This coverage is automatically offered to qualified seniors, and it is often provided without the payment of a monthly premium. If you receive Medicare benefits through a Medicare Advantage plan, your Part A benefits are included in the cost of your insurance. Despite the fact that the vast majority of consumers do not pay a monthly premium for their Part A insurance, you may be required to pay the usual inpatient deductible before receiving care.

Fortunately, Medicare considers your initial hospitalization to be part of the same inpatient care experience as the rehabilitation treatments you receive later, so your initial deductible payment can be used against your inpatient rehab expenditures later in the year.

Medicare Time Limits

Once you are admitted to treatment, Medicare Part A pays 100 percent of your post-deductible costs for the first 60 days of your stay in the facility. This pays for all of the inpatient treatments provided by the SNF, while you may also receive outpatient services that are billed to Part B of your health insurance plan. It’s important to understand that you may be responsible for up to 20 percent of all Part B services, such as transportation and doctor office visits, even if they are rendered during your inpatient stay at the SNF.

From days 61 to 90, you may be required to make a co-payment of $341 each day for the remainder of your treatment. After your inpatient benefits have been used up, you may be required to pay for any further charges out of your own pocket.

Medicare Supplement Insurance

Many Medicare beneficiaries have a Medicare Supplement Insurance (commonly known as Medigap) coverage, which can assist pay the expenses of inpatient rehabilitation that are not covered by their primary insurance. Some or all of the deductible you would otherwise be paid by Medicare can be covered by a Medicare Supplement plan. It can also assist you with some Part B fees that are related to your treatment and may be able to pay some extra out-of-pocket Medicare expenses. Before transferring to a rehabilitation center, it’s a good idea to verify with your insurance company about the specifics of your policy’s coverage.

Medicaid and Rehabilitation Coverage

Health insurance provided by the Medicaid program, a joint federal-state initiative, helps millions of individuals with low financial resources pay for healthcare, which might include the expenses of rehabilitation that Medicare does not cover. The majority of the time, if you are dual-eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, your rehab services will be billed to Medicare first, with any residual expenditures being transferred to Medicaid. You may still be required to satisfy a deductible or contribute a portion of the cost of your rehab before your Medicaid benefits kick in, but these benefits will most likely continue for as long as your rehab is judged medically necessary by the Medicaid program.

What if You Need More Time?

Generally speaking, standard Medicare rehabilitation benefits expire after 90 days each benefit term. If you are able to return home but require rehab again within the following benefit period, the clock begins to tick again and your services are invoiced in the same manner as they were the first time you entered rehabilitation. Medicare may continue to assist with the expense of your rehab if your stay is continuous and lasts longer than the authorized 90 days. Medicare may do this by deducting from your lifetime reserve days.

In the event that you enroll in Medicare, you will be granted a maximum of 60 reserve days during your lifetime.

These days are basically a short extension of your Part A benefits that you can use if you need them; but, they cannot be renewed and, once used, they are no longer available to you in the future.


The inpatient care benefit provided by Medicare covers the cost of your lodging and board while you are a patient in a rehabilitation facility, as well as any inpatient medical procedures and treatments. Outpatient treatments, which are normally covered under Part B, may not be covered under Part A, so check with your insurance provider. It is automatic that both forms of care be covered under the same policy if you receive Medicare coverage through a Part C Medicare Advantage plan.

Can I use Medicare coverage for voluntary admissions to rehab?

In order to be eligible for Part A coverage for rehabilitation services, you must receive a doctor’s recommendation for the admission to the facility.

Inpatient rehabilitation stays that are medically essential are covered by Medicare, but you may not be covered for elective care.

Where can I get help planning for a stay in rehab?

While you’re in treatment, you can chat with a Medicare representative about coverage limitations. Your doctor, a representative from your supplementary insurance provider, and the care planner at your rehabilitation center may all be able to offer you with the information you want. You can also work with a qualified Medicare benefits consultant or a senior financial planner to make your coverage decisions. These specialists can provide you with up-to-date information and assist you in determining your Medicare coverage for rehabilitation services.

Inpatient Rehabilitation Care Coverage

Part A of the Medicare program covers inpatient hospitalizations, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and a portion of home health care.” about=”/node/32351″ role=”article” about=”/node/32351″> Health care services or supplies required to diagnose or treat an illness, accident, ailment, disease, or its symptoms and that satisfy established standards of medicine are covered under Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance).

  • The medically required treatment you get in an inpatient rehabilitation facility or unit (also known as an inpatient “rehab” facility, IRF, acute care rehabilitation center, or rehabilitation hospital) is described in more detail below.
  • Your Original Medicare expenses are as follows: You are responsible for each.
  • A benefit period begins on the day that you are admitted as an inpatient to a hospital or skilled nursing facility (SNF).
  • If you are admitted to a hospital or a skilled nursing facility after one benefit term has expired, a new benefit period will begin.
  • A person may get benefits during an unlimited number of time periods.” benefit period: role=”article” about=”/node/32116″> role=”article” about=”/node/32116″>
  • For each benefit period (up to 60 days total over your lifetime), you will pay a $1,556 deductible*
  • For days 61-90, you will pay $389 coinsurance per day
  • For days 91 and beyond, you will pay $778 coinsurance for each “lifetime reserve day” after day 90 for each benefit period (up to 60 days total over your lifetime)
  • Each day following the lifetime reserve days is as follows: Including all expenses
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*If you were previously charged a deductible for care received during a prior hospitalization within the same benefit period, you will not be required to pay a deductible for care received in an inpatient rehabilitation facility. This is due to the fact that your benefit period begins on the first day of your previous hospital stay, and that hospital stay counts against your deductible. As an illustration:

  • Following your discharge from an acute care hospital, you are transported to an inpatient rehabilitation center. Inpatient rehabilitation is required if you are admitted to a facility within 60 days after being discharged from the hospital.

What it is and how it works Acute inpatient rehabilitation can be beneficial if you’re recovering from a serious surgical procedure, illness, or injury and require a comprehensive rehabilitation therapy program under physician supervision, as well as your doctors and therapists working collaboratively to provide you with coordinated care. Medicare provides coverage for the following:

  • Physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology are all examples of rehabilitation therapies available. A semi-private room
  • Meals
  • Nursing services
  • Drugs
  • And other amenities Various more healthcare services and supplies are available.


  • Nursing services on a private basis
  • Your own telephone and television in your room
  • Toiletries and other personal things such as toothpaste, socks, and razors (unless when a hospital supplies them as part of your hospital admittance kit)
  • When medically essential, a separate room is provided.

Things to be aware of

During the COVID-19 pandemic, inpatient rehabilitation facilities may accept you from an acute-care hospitals experiencing a surge, even if you don’t require rehabilitation care.

Part B includes certain doctors’ services, outpatient treatment, medical supplies, and preventative services. ” role=”article” about=”/node/32356″> Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance)covers doctors’ services you obtain while you’re in an inpatient rehabilitation center.

Is my test, item, or service covered?

Medicare Part A provides coverage for medically required inpatient rehabilitation (rehabilitation) services, which can be beneficial when recuperating from major injuries, surgery, or a medical condition. Rehabilitation services for inpatients are available at the following facilities:

  • A skilled nursing facility, an inpatient rehabilitation facility (also known as an IRF or inpatient “rehab” facility), an acute care rehabilitation center, and a rehabilitation hospital are all examples of skilled nursing facilities.

In order for inpatient rehabilitation to be reimbursed, your doctor must certify that the following conditions apply to your medical condition: 1. It requires extensive rehabilitation. There is a requirement for ongoing medical supervision. The treatment you get must be coordinated by your physicians and therapists, who must work together. During your stay, Medicare will cover your rehab services (physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology), a semi-private room, your meals and snacks, nursing services, prescriptions, and any other hospital services and supplies that you receive.

How Much Does Inpatient Rehab Care Cost with Medicare?

The specifics of what Medicare pays and for how long are determined by the type of treatment required and the location where it is delivered. When it comes to inpatient rehab at a skilled nursing facility, the costs and insurance coverage are the same as they are for skilled nursing facility care.

How Long Will Medicare Cover Rehab in a Skilled Nursing Facility?

Medicare pays inpatient rehabilitation at a skilled nursing facility (commonly known as an SNF) for up to 100 days if the patient meets certain criteria. After an accident or operation such as a hip or knee replacement, rehabilitation in a skilled nursing facility may be required.

Skilled nursing facility care costs

The following are the costs associated with a rehabilitation stay at a skilled care facility:

  • After you’ve reached the Part A deductible, you normally don’t have to pay anything for days 1–20 in a single benefit month. For days 21–100 of a benefit period, you must pay a per-day premium established by Medicare. In a benefit period, you are responsible for 100 percent of the costs from day 101 onward.

After a qualified hospital stay that fits the 3-day criterion, Medicare will pay for inpatient rehab in a skilled nursing facility under the Medicare program. To be eligible for Medicare coverage of rehab in a skilled nursing facility, you must be admitted to the hospital as an inpatient for at least three days while receiving care. Keep in mind that you must be officially admitted to the hospital by a doctor’s order in order to be deemed an inpatient, so be aware of this restriction. In the event that the 3-day rule is not satisfied, Medicare may pay for outpatient rehabilitation.

How Long Will Medicare Cover Rehab in an Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility?

When inpatient rehabilitation in an inpatient rehabilitation facility (also known as an IRF) is deemed “medically essential,” Medicare will pay for the treatment.

After a major medical incident, such as a stroke or a spinal cord damage, you may require rehabilitation in an IRF. If your doctor determines that your medical condition necessitates the following treatment in an inpatient rehabilitation center, you will be eligible for care.

  • Rehab that is intensive
  • Ongoing medical monitoring
  • Coordinated treatment from a team of physicians and therapists who are working together

Inpatient rehabilitation facility costs

The following are the costs associated with rehab at an inpatient rehabilitation facility:

  • After you’ve reached the Part A deductible, you normally don’t have to pay anything for days 1–60 in a single benefit month. For days 61–90 of a benefit period, you must pay a per-day premium established by Medicare. Medicare allows you to spend up to 60 lifetime reserve days at a per-day price established by Medicare for days 91–150 of a benefit period
  • You are responsible for 100 percent of the cost of days 150 and beyond of a benefit period

Depending on your Medicare Advantage plan, your inpatient rehab coverage and expenses may be different. Additionally, depending on your Medicare supplement plan, part of your inpatient rehab expenditures may be covered. For further information, contact your plan’s provider. It is also possible that your charges will be different if you were moved to an inpatient rehab facility immediately from an acute care hospital or within 60 days of being discharged from an acute care hospital. For the care you get at the inpatient rehab facility, you will not be required to pay a deductible if you previously paid a deductible for the care you received during the previous hospitalization within the same benefit period.

How Long Does Medicare Pay for Rehab? Inpatient & Outpatient Coverage

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What is the length of time that Medicare will cover rehab? Learn more about how Medicare can pay for inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation and treatment. Depending on the circumstances, Medicare Part A (hospitalization insurance) and Part B (medical insurance) may both fund specific rehabilitation treatments in a variety of different ways. Find out more about how long Medicare will cover rehab in different sorts of facilities, as well as the fees you may be responsible for, by reading this useful resource.

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How long does Medicare pay for rehab?

A skilled nursing facility is covered by Medicare Part A for up to 100 days, with certain coinsurance charges. After the 100th day of an inpatient SNF stay, you are liable for the whole bill. After you’ve met your Part A deductible, Medicare Part A will also pay 90 days of inpatient hospital rehab, with some coinsurance fees thrown in for good measure. You will begin to use up your “lifetime reserve days” on day 91, when you reach the end of the year. Following a surgery, injury, stroke, or other medical incident, you may be required to undertake rehabilitation in a hospital setting.

Medicare Part A covers inpatient hospital care, which may include both the initial treatment and any further rehabilitation you get while still hospitalized as an inpatient.

  • You must first fulfill your Medicare Part A deductible before Medicare Part A can begin to pay for your rehabilitation. In 2022, the Medicare Part A deductible will be $1,556 per benefit period, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. A benefit period begins the day you are admitted to the hospital and ends when you are discharged. Once you have met your deductible, Medicare will pay for the remainder of your stay, up to and including the first 60 days. It is possible to have more than one benefit period in a calendar year
  • However, this is unlikely. After 60 days, if you continue to receive inpatient treatment, you will be responsible for a coinsurance payment of $389 per day (in 2022) until the end of the 90-day period. The first of your “lifetime reserve days” will be used up on day 91, and in 2022, you will be compelled to pay a daily coinsurance of $778 to the insurance company. You have a total of 60 reserve days during the course of your life. Once you have used up all of your lifetime reserve days, you will be responsible for all hospital expenses incurred during any stay lasting more than 90 days
  • After that, you will be responsible for all future hospital expenses.

When you have been out of the hospital for 60 consecutive days, your benefit period comes to an end, and your Part A deductible will be reset the next time you are hospitalized to the hospital. It is possible that your rehabilitation will take place in a skilled care facility (SNF). You will normally be covered in full for the first 20 days of each benefit period if you are admitted to a skilled nursing facility (including any rehabilitation treatments) (after you meet your Medicare Part A deductible).

When you arrive at the hospital on days 21 to 100, you will be required to pay a coinsurance payment of $194.50 each day in 2022, after which you will be liable for all expenditures starting on day 101.

Does Medicare cover outpatient rehabilitation?

Rehabilitation services provided in an outpatient clinic or at the patient’s home include physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology, to name a few. Medicare Part B often covers the costs of this form of rehabilitation. In most cases, after you have met your Medicare Part B deductible (which in 2022 will be $233 per year), you will be responsible for paying 20 percent of the Medicare-approved price for rehab services. If your main health care practitioner determines that the rehab is medically essential, there is no time restriction on how long Medicare Part B will fund these outpatient rehabilitation treatments under the program.

Does Medicare cover substance abuse rehab?

Medicare may also cover certain services connected to drug or alcohol abuse, depending on the circumstances. If your doctor certifies that you require at least 20 hours of therapeutic services per week, Medicare Part B may fund outpatient treatment services as part of a partial hospitalization program (PHP). Outpatient drug addiction treatment sessions provided by a doctor, clinical psychologist, nurse practitioner, or clinical social worker may also be covered under Part B of the Medicare program.

The extent of your coverage will be determined by your particular plan.

Medicare Advantage plans also cover rehab

In order to be considered Medicare Advantage plans, they must provide the same benefits as Original Medicare. Many of these privately offered plans may also provide extra benefits that are not included in Original Medicare, such as prescription medication coverage, in addition to the standard benefits. This implies that your eligible rehab will be covered by your Medicare Advantage plan in the same manner that Medicare Part A and Part B would. You may be able to select a Medicare Advantage plan that has additional benefits that you find beneficial but that are not covered by Original Medicare.

Alternatively, call1-855-891-70211-855-891-7021TTY Users: 711to talk with a professional insurance representative about your insurance needs.

About the author

Christian Worstell is a registered insurance agent as well as a Senior Staff Writer for He has worked in the insurance industry for over a decade. He is driven by a desire to assist people in navigating the complexity of Medicare and understanding their insurance coverage alternatives. His writing has appeared in publications like asVox, MSN, and The Washington Post, and he is a frequent contributor to health care and financial blogs, among other places.

With a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Shippensburg University, Christian is an accomplished journalist. He presently resides in the city of Raleigh, North Carolina. You may have seen coverage of Christian’s studies and reporting in the following places: ​

SNF care past 100 days

When you are 65 or older, you are eligible for Medicare. If you are under 65 and have received Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) for 24 months, or if you have ALS/Lou Gehrig’s Disease, you are eligible for Medicare. If you have End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), you are also eligible for Medicare, regardless of your age. There are two ways to obtain health insurance: directly from the federal government (see Original Medicare) or indirectly through a private firm (see Medicare Advantage).

  1. Skilled nursing facilities are Medicare-approved institutions that offer short-term post-hospital extended care services at a lesser level of care than is given in a hospital.
  2. A benefit period begins on the day you are admitted to a hospital as an inpatient or to a skilled nursing facility and ends on the day you have been out of the hospital or skilled nursing facility for a continuous period of 60 days.
  3. Your coinsurance is calculated by the number of days you have spent in the facility during each benefit period.
  4. If your care is coming to an end because you have exhausted your allotted days, the facility is not obligated to give you with written notification.
  5. The majority of carers are unpaid and are frequently members of the family, friends, or neighbors.
  6. It is important to keep track of how many days you have spent in a skilled nursing facility in order to avoid surprise fees once Medicare coverage expires.
  7. Following a three-day qualifying inpatient stay, you will be eligible for a new benefit period, which will include 100 additional days of skilled nursing facility care.
  8. physical, occupational, or psychological Speech Therapy is a type of therapy that helps people communicate more effectively.
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A patient’s plan of care includes the following services that are required to qualify them for home health care: assessment; therapeutic exercises; gait training; range-of-motion tests; ultrasound diathermy treatments; teaching services; and the development, implementation, and management of a patient’s care plan.

  • Even if you have exhausted your SNF days within a benefit period, Medicare will not cover the price of your room and board, which means you might suffer significant financial hardship.
  • The term “provider” refers to a person or facility (such as a doctor, hospital, or durable medical equipment (DME) supplier) that delivers health care services and/or commodities to patients.
  • The majority of outpatient services are covered by Medicare Part B.
  • “>outpatient care while still residing at home.
  • It normally covers nursing home stays and can help you save money on medical expenses, but the plans are sometimes highly expensive and may be subject to medical underwriting or give just limited coverage.
  • More information about your plan can be found by contacting them.

For further information on whether or not you fulfill the eligibility standards in your state, speak with your localMedicaid office. In the United States, Medicaid is a federal and state program that provides health care to those with limited income and assets. “>Medicaidoffice.

The Myth of 100 Days of Medicare Coverage in a Skilled Nursing Facility

Persons 65 years of age or older, as well as individuals under the age of 65 who have been handicapped for at least 24 months, who fulfill the following five conditions are normally eligible for Medicare Part A skilled nursing facility coverage: 1) The resident requires daily skilled nursing or rehabilitation services that can only be provided in a skilled nursing facility; 2) the resident was hospitalized for at least 3 consecutive days, not counting the day of discharge, before entering the skilled nursing facility; 3) the resident was admitted to the facility within 30 days of leaving the hospital; 4) the resident is admitted to the facility to receive treatment for the same condition(s) for which he or she was hospitalized; 5) the resident is admitted to the facility to receive treatment for the same condition(s When all five of these criteria are met, Medicare will cover up to 100 days of care in a skilled nursing facility in the following ways: the first 20 days are completely covered by Medicare, and the remaining 80 days (days 21 through 100) are covered by Medicare with a daily coinsurance amount that the resident is responsible for.

However, be aware that not everyone who enters a skilled nursing facility will be eligible for the full 100 days of Medicare coverage.

In addition, if the person refuses to participate in rehabilitation, his or her insurance coverage will be withdrawn.

When Medicare coverage ends because it is no longer medically necessary or because the care is considered custodial care, the health care facility is required to provide written notice to the resident and their designated representative on a form called “Notice of Medicare Non-Coverage.” This notice is provided on a form called “Notice of Medicare Non-Coverage.” If you feel your rehabilitation and Medicare coverage is ending prematurely, you can file an appeal with the appropriate authority.

This information is contained in the Notice of Medicare Non-Coverage, as well as instructions on how to submit an appeal.

Make sure you have a strategy in place to protect your assets while also obtaining government subsidies to assist you in paying for long-term health care expenses.

Senior Rehab: Medicare Coverage of Skilled Nursing Facility Stays

If your loved one requires senior rehab in a skilled nursing facility (SNF), it is critical to understand what expenditures are covered by Original Medicare and what charges must be paid for out of pocket by the family.

Does Medicare Cover Long-Term Care?

Medicare is a federal health insurance program that covers persons over the age of 65, as well as certain younger people with disabilities and some people with end-stage renal illness. It is funded by the federal government. Medicare, like other health insurance programs, does not provide coverage for long-term care services. Medicare only pays for short-term stays in skilled nursing facilities that are certified by Medicare for the purpose of elder rehabilitation. Beneficiaries who have been hospitalized and then discharged to a rehabilitation center as part of their recovery after a major illness, accident, or procedure are more likely to require these short-term stays in a rehabilitation facility.

A significant health setback that necessitates short-term care in a skilled nursing facility (SNF) frequently results in the realization that long-term care is actually required.

Families are sometimes perplexed and angry when they get news that their loved ones must either pay for continued treatment privately, apply for Medicaid, or be discharged. This is because Medicare coverage is only available for a short amount of time under certain conditions.

Medicare Rehab Coverage Guidelines

Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) covers skilled nursing care given in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) under specific conditions. Detailed explanations of the Medicare standards and requirements for coverage of senior rehab treatment in a skilled nursing facility are provided in the following sections.

How Medicare Measures Skilled Nursing Care Coverage

During “benefit periods,” Medicare evaluates the usage and coverage of skilled nursing care services. This is a difficult idea to grasp, and it frequently causes confusion among elders and family caregivers. Whenever a Medicare beneficiary is admitted to the hospital on an inpatient basis, a benefit period begins on the day of his or her admission. The time spent at the hospital as an outpatient or as an observer does not count toward the start of a benefit period. (You can get more specific information regarding how Medicare distinguishes between inpatient and outpatient statuses, as well as the expenses associated with each, at In order to be eligible for any coverage of rehab treatment in a skilled nursing facility after a benefit period has begun, a beneficiary must first complete a three-day inpatient hospital stay that meets the requirements of the plan.

A benefit period ends when a beneficiary has not received inpatient hospital or skilled nursing facility treatment for a period of 60 days consecutively.

There is no limit to the number of benefit periods that a recipient can receive under this arrangement.

Patient Criteria for Medicare Rehab Coverage

In addition to meeting the standards outlined above during the benefit period, a recipient must also fulfill all of the following requirements:

  1. Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) is in effect for the beneficiary, and they have days remaining in their benefit period that they may utilize
  2. The beneficiary has had a qualified hospital stay. This refers to an inpatient hospital stay of three consecutive days or longer, beginning on the day the hospital admits them as an inpatient and ending on the day they are discharged from the hospital
  3. It does not include any outpatient or observation days or the day they are discharged from the hospital. An eligible beneficiary who has completed a qualifying hospital stay must attend a skilled nursing facility within a short amount of time (usually 30 days) after being discharged. It is the beneficiary’s doctor’s responsibility to order skilled nursing care, which necessitates the skills and supervision of professional personnel (e.g., registered nurses, licensed practical nurses), as well as physical and occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, and audiologists. It is necessary for the beneficiary to receive skilled nursing care on a daily basis, and the specific services required are those that can only be given in a skilled nursing facility on an inpatient basis. When a skilled nursing facility is required just for skilled rehabilitation services, the facility is still deemed daily care, regardless of whether or not therapy services are provided 5 or 6 days a week.
  4. Benefitees must require professional services in order to recover from the medical condition that was treated during their qualifying three-day hospital stay, or to treat a concomitant medical condition. (For example, if you are taken to the hospital as an inpatient due to a stroke and then break your hip while in the hospital, Medicare may reimburse senior rehab treatments for your hip even though they are no longer required for stroke recovery.) In order for skilled services to be considered reasonable and required for the diagnosis or treatment of the beneficiary’s qualifying condition, the doctor must prescribe them.

How Long Does Medicare Pay for Rehab in a SNF?

If a person satisfies all of the standards listed above, the quantity of Medicare coverage they will get will be determined by how long they will be required to remain in the SNF. Medicare coverage diminishes as time passes. Recall that folks with Medigap plans or Medicare Advantage Plans may be able to receive supplemental coverage for elder rehab stays if they qualify.

Costs Under the Medicare 100 Day Rule

  • During the first 20 days of a benefit period, Medicare covers the entire cost of each benefit period. Days 21–100:Medicare covers everything except a daily coinsurance fee. In 2021, the coinsurance rate is $185.50 per day
  • In 2022, the rate is $185.50 per day. Days 101 and beyond: After 100 days, Medicare does not offer funding for rehabilitation. The institution may discharge beneficiaries if they do not pay for any more days totally out of cash, apply for Medicaid coverage, or investigate alternative payment options.

Breaks in Skilled Care

It is possible for recipients to take “breaks” from senior rehab, which might affect their eligibility for insurance coverage. A beneficiary who leaves a skilled nursing facility for less than 30 days and then needs to return for the same medical condition (or one that is related to it) will not be required to complete another qualifying three-day hospital stay in order to be eligible for any additional SNF coverage that may be available during their benefit period. If the gap lasts for more than 60 consecutive days, the benefit term comes to an end, and the beneficiary’s SNF benefits are only extended if they fulfill the standards listed above once again.

Debunking Medicare’s “Improvement Standard”

For many years, senior rehab facilities informed their patients that if their health stopped improving or had “plateaued” within their covered benefit period, Medicare would discontinue paying for skilled nursing care. However, a 2013 federal court settlement resulted in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) admitting that this policy was unsupported: “Medicare has never supported the imposition of this ‘Improvement Standard’ rule-of-thumb in determining whether skilled care is required to prevent or slow deterioration in a patient’s condition.’ ” Consequently, such coverage is not dependent on the beneficiary’s ability to recover, but rather on whether skilled care is necessary, as well as the underlying rationality and necessity of the services in question.

Since 2014, the new Medicare Benefit Policy Manual has incorporated these clarifications, however some senior rehab facilities have not made the necessary changes to ensure that chronic patients have access to the coverage for which they are entitled.

It’s also likely that some of the software packages used by company offices to manage their billing haven’t kept up with the changes in billing practices.

Ensuring Medicare Will Pay for Senior Rehab

Due to the large amount of opportunity for interpretation (and reinterpretation) surrounding the regulations for Medicare coverage, it is easy for families to become perplexed about how to pay for care in skilled nursing facilities. Overall, vigilance and effort are required to ensure that aging loved ones receive the professional care they require and the coverage to which they are legally entitled. Family caregivers must ensure that the hospital professionals and skilled nursing facility staff provide precise orders and explanations for the specialized services that are required to support the health and safety of their loved ones.

A geriatric care manager (GCM) to keep track of your loved one’s nursing home chart and schedule, as well as accompany you to care plan meetings, may prove to be a worthwhile investment.

Even if your loved one’s Medicare coverage has expired during their benefit period, a GCM may assist you in locating and obtaining other forms of financial support as well as different sorts of care for your loved one.

Other Ways to Pay for Skilled Nursing Care

Other sources of assistance are available to assist with the cost of skilled nursing and related services. If a senior’s income and resources are restricted, he or she may be qualified for the Medicaid program offered by their state. Medicaid offers assistance with the cost of skilled and/or custodial care, drugs, and other medical expenditures for those who qualify. If they are qualified for both Medicare and Medicaid, they are referred to as “dual eligible beneficiaries,” and the majority of their health-care expenses are often paid by the government.

A Note About Medicare Rehab Coverage During the COVID-19 Pandemic

While the coronavirus epidemic is ongoing, Medicare has made some adjustments to its coverage rules for elder rehabilitation treatments. Read more here. At some cases, Medicare beneficiaries may be eligible for senior rehab in a skilled nursing facility without having to begin a new benefit term with the program. Others who are unable to remain in their own homes or who are otherwise harmed by the pandemic may be allowed to receive care in a skilled nursing facility (SNF) without first completing a required hospitalization.

Medicare Guidelines for Inpatient Rehab Coverage

  • Original Medicare (Part A and Part B) will cover inpatient rehabilitation if it is medically required following an illness, accident, or surgery provided you meet specific requirements
  • However, if you do not meet these criteria, you will not be covered. In some cases, Medicare mandates a three-day hospital stay before it would pay for rehabilitative services. Inpatient rehabilitation is also covered by Medicare Advantage plans, albeit the coverage rules and expenses differ from plan to plan.
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Some accidents, diseases, and procedures may necessitate a period of rehabilitation under the supervision of a medical professional. You can receive Medicare coverage for your treatment in an inpatient rehabilitation center, provided that you satisfy certain criteria. The recommendations presented in this article are for inpatient medical or postsurgical rehabilitation, not for inpatient rehabilitation for substance use disorders (such as alcoholism or drug addiction). You may find out more about Medicare’s treatment standards for drug use disorders by visiting this page.

At addition, you must receive treatment in a facility that has been approved by Medicare.

The specifics of this regulation will be discussed in greater depth later on. As a beneficiary of original Medicare (MedicarePart A and Part B) in 2020, you will be responsible for the following expenses throughout each benefit period:

  • Days 1 through 60 are included. In addition to the $1,364 deductible, you will be liable for In the event that you transfer to a rehabilitation center immediately following your hospital stay and satisfy your deductible there, you will not be required to pay another deductible since you will still be in a single benefit period. The same is true if you are admitted to a rehabilitation institution within 60 days of your hospitalization
  • That is, days 61 through 90 after your hospitalization. During this time frame, you will be responsible for a daily coinsurance payment of $341 beginning on Day 91. For each of your lifetime reserve days, you’ll be required to pay $682 in coinsurance. You have a total of 60 reserve days during the course of your life. After you’ve spent them all up, you’re responsible for the rest of the expenses.

Costs with Medicare Advantage

If you have a Medicare Advantage (Part C)plan, your expenses will vary depending on the insurance company you choose. If at all feasible, consult with your plan adviser or insurance provider ahead of time so that you can budget for any out-of-pocket expenses. Tip If you believe you may require long-term care, you should look into the Medicare AdvantageSpecial Needs Plans that are available. These plans are intended to provide additional benefits to persons who suffer from chronic health issues, as well as those who are enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid programs.

Costs with Medigap

Adding Medigap (Medicare supplement) coverage may be able to assist you in covering your coinsurance and deductible expenses. Additional lifetime reserve days are available with some Medigap policies (up to 365 extra days). Using Medicare’s plan finder tool, you may look for plans in your region and compare their coverage options. During inpatient rehabilitation, a team of healthcare specialists will collaborate to assist you in regaining your ability to operate on your own. Your treatment plan will be personalized to your specific problem, however it may contain the following elements:

  • Assistive equipment for orthotic or prosthetic devices
  • Occupational therapy and physical therapy
  • Psychological and social assistance

A particular area of the hospital, an assisted living home, or a rehabilitation center are all options for those seeking recovery. Medicare pays your rehabilitation services, but it is not designed to be used for long-term nursing home or assisted living. More information regarding Medicare and long-term care homes may be found here. Following the fundamental standards listed here will help to ensure that Medicare will cover your inpatient rehabilitation.

Make sure you’re enrolled in Medicare

You can enroll for the first time during a seven-month period known as the initial enrolment period. This time begins three months before the month in which you turn 65 and concludes three months after the month in which you were born. Medicare’s open enrollment period, which runs from October 15 to December 7 each year, provides another opportunity to sign up for the program. You can enroll in a Medicare Advantage (Part C) plan from January 1 through March 31 of each year if you’re contemplating doing so.

Confirm your initial hospital stay meets the 3-day rule

Inpatient rehabilitation at a skilled nursing facility is covered by Medicare only after a 3-day inpatient stay in a Medicare-approved hospital, according to the organization. It’s critical that your doctor issue an order admitting you to the hospital as quickly as possible. In the event that you have spent a night in the hospital for observation or testing, that night will not be counted against the 3-day minimum. It is necessary that these three days be consecutive, and any time spent in the emergency department prior to your admission is not counted toward the total number of days.

Tip It might be difficult to determine if you have been hospitalized as an inpatient or how long you have been there.

This may cause you to question whether or not you are covered by the 3-day rule. This is a useful tool for assessing whether or not you should be admitted as an inpatient. When speaking with your doctor, you can refer to this guide to ensure that you receive the information you require.

If you’re having surgery, check Medicare’s 2020 “inpatient only” list

Some surgical procedures necessitate the use of an inpatient facility at all times. Unlike other surgeries, the 3-day restriction does not apply in this case. Additionally, Medicare will fund your inpatient rehabilitation after the surgery. These procedures can be found on Medicare’s list of procedures that are exclusively available to inpatients. In 2018, Medicare removed complete knee replacements off the list of procedures that may only be performed as an inpatient. In addition, Medicare will no longer cover complete hip replacements starting in 2020.

Consult with your insurance provider if you have a Medicare Advantage plan to determine if your operation will be covered as an inpatient-only treatment.

Tip It is possible that your charges will be greater or cheaper if you have a Medicare Advantage (Part C) plan, depending on whether your healthcare providers and rehab facility are in network or out of network with the plan.

This will assist in ensuring complete coverage while also maximizing expense savings.

Verify that your doctor’s order includes the required information

In order for Medicare to reimburse your inpatient rehabilitation, your doctor must certify that you require the following services:

  • A medical practitioner is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week
  • You will have many interactions with a doctor during your rehabilitation. the availability of a licensed practical nurse with an expertise in rehabilitation services
  • Therapy for at least 3 hours per day, 5 days per week (although there is some flexibility here)
  • Therapy for at least 3 hours per day, 5 days per week (although there is some flexibility here)
  • Should have a multidisciplinary team of professionals caring for you, including a doctor, a rehabilitation nurse, and at least one therapist

When in doubt, talk with your doctor or call Medicare

Despite the fact that you may not always have early warning of a sudden sickness or accident, it is always a good idea to discuss Medicare coverage with your healthcare provider before undergoing a treatment or inpatient stay, if at all possible. For further assurance that you are following Medicare procedures to the letter, you can call Medicare directly at 800-MEDICARE (800-MEDICARE) (800-633-4227 or TTY: 877-486-2048). Inpatient therapy is focused on achieving specific goals and is rigorous.

We will strive to assist you in recovering and regaining as much functioning as possible during your recovery.

Psychologists, psychiatrists, and social workers may also be able to aid you with your mental and emotional well-being if you seek their help.

  • Because sudden sickness or injury seldom give you any early notice, it’s always a good idea to discuss Medicare coverage with your healthcare team ahead of time, if at all possible, before having any medical procedures or undergoing an inpatient stay. The Medicare Helpline may be reached directly at 800-MEDICARE if you want to double-check that you’re following Medicare protocols exactly (800-633-4227 or TTY: 877-486-2048). Goal-directed and intensive inpatient therapy is the norm. You and your rehabilitation team will work together to develop a comprehensive plan for your care and rehabilitation. We will strive to assist you in recovering as much functionality as feasible while doing so. Depending on your health condition, your team will consist of registered nurses who specialize in rehabilitation care, as well as one or more physicians and rehabilitation therapists. Psychology, psychiatry, and social work professionals may also be able to aid you with your mental and emotional well-being if you seek their assistance. Work with a physical therapist to achieve the following goals.

You may collaborate with an occupational therapist in order to:

  • Learn how to use any medical gadgets that you may require throughout your rehabilitation. While recovering, go out your normal routines of daily living
  • Prepare for life at home once you have been discharged

You may collaborate with a speech and language pathologist to do the following:

  • Become more familiar with your language and practice word retrieval
  • Learn to swallow food and beverages
  • Discover new methods to communicate

If you’ve suffered from one of the following injuries or ailments, inpatient rehabilitation may be necessary:

  • Brain damage, cancer, heart attack, orthopedic surgery, spinal cord injury, and stroke are all possibilities.

After a doctor certifies that you require intense, specialized care to help you recover from a medical condition or surgical operation, both original Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans will cover the cost of inpatient rehabilitation services. Inpatient rehabilitative care may be provided in a specialized rehab department inside a hospital, at a skilled nursing facility, or at a rehabilitation clinic or hospital that is independent from the main hospital. In order for Medicare to fund your inpatient rehabilitation, you must fulfill a number of critical requirements.

While you’re in rehabilitation, you’ll be looked for by a team of professionals that will include nurses, physicians, and therapists.

It is possible that the material on this website will be of use to you in making personal insurance decisions; nevertheless, it is not intended to give advise on the purchase, usage, or application of any insurance or insurance products.

Healthline Media does not suggest or support any third-party entities that may be involved in the insurance transaction process.

medicare payment 100 day rule post hospital rehabilitation – Advocate for Mom & Dad

After a doctor certifies that you require intense, specialized treatment to help you recover from a medical condition or surgical operation, both original Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans will cover the cost of inpatient rehab. Inpatient rehabilitative care may be provided in a specialized rehab department inside a hospital, at a skilled nursing home, or at a rehabilitation clinic or hospital that is independent from the hospital. In order for Medicare to cover your inpatient rehab, you must fulfill a number of crucial requirements.

You will be cared for by a multidisciplinary team that will include nurses, physicians, and therapists while you are in rehabilitation.

It is possible that the material on this website will be of use to you in making personal insurance decisions, but it is not meant to give advise on the purchase, usage, or application of any insurance or insurance products.

Healthline Media does not suggest or support any third-party entities that may be involved in the insurance sector.

  • It is possible to have a hospital incident and be released to a Post-Acute facility for a seven-day stay and still have 93 days remaining on your Medicaid payment for that stay. For example, if you are readmitted to hospital (for the same illness) and then discharged to a facility where you stay for 14 days, you will have 79 days remaining out of the initial 100 calendar days. When a person is readmitted to the hospital for the same occurrence more than once, it might lead to legal complications. Suddenly, there aren’t enough days left on the clock from the initial 100 to return to the rehabilitation center. If you believe you may require short-term rehabilitation, do not return home from the hospital and immediately check into a facility. Medicaid will not pay if you are not discharged from the hospital and placed in a care facility. For the 100-day clock to reset, there must be a gap of 60 days between hospitalizations.

Observations and Insights

  • There are insurance-related hurdles to admission, which include the following:
  • In addition, there are only a limited number of days remaining for Medicare to pay, and the institution thinks the patient’s stay will be longer than the funds allow
  • The cost of care is too high, and the high cost of newer medications is a significant barrier to entry.
  • Medicare restricts the amount of money that can be paid to a facility every day at $560.00. If you do not require acute treatment in a hospital but your care plan necessitates the use of a medicine that costs $700.00 per day, the institution will not accept you owing to the $560.00 per day restriction. What are the alternatives to the current situation? In the event that a patient becomes ill while in the hospital and requires IV antibiotics, the patient cannot be detained in the hospital since IV antibiotics do not necessitate immediate medical attention. You will most likely be sent home with a referral to an IV home business that can administer the medication if the medicine is too pricey or a barrier to getting to a facility.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this blog is solely for educational purposes. It is not meant to be a substitute for, nor does it take the place of, consultation with a physician, lawyer, accountant, financial advisor, or any other competent expert. Thank you to my Rehabilitation series colleague, who has helped me much. Emily Lintag is a writer and editor based in New York City.

  • Hospital and health-care worker Emily Lintag has worked as a subacute rehabilitation nurse, an assisted living charge nurse, and a wellness nurse in the past. Along with functioning as coordinator and hospital liaison with a number of rehabilitation centers, she also has her own business.

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