Does Medicare Cover Chiropractic

Does Medicare Cover Chiropractic – Overview

Medicare is one of the most popular federal health insurance programs. It is aimed at serving individuals over 65 years of age.

Different parts of the program focus on covering various healthcare services and treatments.

Chiropractic care is effective in treating several disorders, including spinal adjustment for the treatment of back pain.

A study by the American Chiropractic Association showed that around 80% of individuals experience back pain at some point or another during their lifetime.

Chiropractic treatment is becoming increasingly popular to relieve musculoskeletal problems like back, joint and neck pain.

Numerous highly trained and qualified chiropractors are also successful in treating chronic headaches.

Medicare only covers manual manipulation of the spine to correct a subluxation. Other chiropractic services are not covered.

If you, too, suffer from chronic body pain or headaches and wish to undergo chiropractic treatment, you need to know whether Medicare covers the cost of chiropractic services.

How does Medicare Cover Chiropractic Treatment

Let’s take a detailed look at Medicare’s chiropractic coverage:

Medicare Part A

If you are covered with Medicare Part A, you should know that it does not cover the cost of chiropractic treatment.

Medicare A is mainly aimed at covering the cost of hospital care.

Chiropractic care is considered a healthcare service and is not an emergency procedure performed at a physician’s office, so it is not covered under Medicare Part A.

Medicare Part B

Medicare Part B is meant to cover the cost of essential medical services, such as treatments that you require immediately and for preventive care.

Although preventive care can be a vague term sometimes, Medicare offers coverage for mental health treatment services, flu shots and visits to your doctor for anything covered under preventive care.

If you are suffering from a spinal subluxation, Medicare Part B will cover the cost of spinal alignment (manipulation).

Additionally, the number of treatments required to remedy your condition will determine whether chiropractic care can be covered under Medicare Part B.

Medicare Part B covers 80% of the approved amount for chiropractic manipulation of the spine after you’ve met the deductible.

Please remember that Medicare Part B does not cover the cost of diagnostic tests, such as X-rays, ordered by your chiropractor.

As of the last update, Medicare Part B only covers spinal manipulation for subluxation. There is no current law expanding this coverage to include other chiropractic treatments.

Medicare Part C

Private health insurance providers offer Medicare Advantage (MA), another name for Medicare Part C.

These insurance plans are approved by the federal government and may cover the cost of additional treatments not included in Medicare Part A and Part B.

These plans become your primary health insurance.

Certain Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) plans may offer additional chiropractic coverage beyond what Original Medicare covers; however, coverage and out-of-pocket costs vary by plan.

While all Medicare Advantage plans must cover at least what Original Medicare covers, some may offer additional chiropractic benefits.

It is highly advised to do your research and find out which particular Medicare Part C plan covers the cost of advanced chiropractic care.

Medicare Supplement Plans OR Medigap

Medicare Supplement Insurance plans, or Medigap Plans, are available as supplements to Original Medicare.

Deductibles and co-payments are covered under Medigap health insurance policies.

If your Original Medicare covers the cost of chiropractic treatments, you must pay only about 20% of the total treatment cost.

Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) can help pay your share of the costs for covered chiropractic services, such as copayments or coinsurance, but does not extend coverage to services that Medicare does not cover.

Which is the Best Medicare Plan to Cover Chiropractic Treatment

If you know that you require chiropractic care regularly, then you need to realize that Medicare will only cover the cost of treatment for spinal subluxation.

Until you meet the annual deductibles, you are responsible for the cost of treatment. Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans offer partial coverage for some chiropractic care.

However, you cannot choose between Medigap coverage or Medicare Advantage plans.


Medicare covers the cost of manual manipulation of the spine to correct a subluxation when performed by a chiropractor, but other chiropractic services and visits are not covered. Medicare has covered manual manipulation of the spine to correct a subluxation for many years; this is not a recent change.

On the other hand, the Medicare Part B plan covers the cost of chiropractic care, while Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans also help cover the significant cost of chiropractic care.

See Also

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