From what I can gather the only (full) coverage for a CI is through Medicare. Uncle Sam will pay for the full cost of one CI but most likely not for a second. But lets say in the next two to five years medical science replaces the CI with something better, that improves one’s hearing yet doesn’t require the Cochlear nerve connection between the ear and brain to be severed. If such a device should be become available to the masses over the next five years would Medicare pick up the total cost for surgery/usage versus what they currently pay/cover for a CI?
Now I understand at some the FDA or some federal agency has to bless off a possible CI replacement or alternate option, but would Medicare coverage be automatic once that happened? It should be. Seems to me if there are thousands of patients on Medicare coverage who want the next best thing to replace or improve a current CI, the government should allow complete 100% cost coverage for such medical devices immediately as soon as such new devices have been determined to be safe and improve a user’s hearing level. Not looking for the Chicken before the egg, but also don’t want Medicare to delay in covering medical cost or new device cost when and if a significant improvement over current Cochlear Implants should b e found.
Anyone have a feel how fast Medicare would react if we get some medical breakthrough to replace current CI in the future?