Are Stair Lifts Covered by Medicare?

Are Stair Lifts Covered by Medicare?


Are Stair Lifts Covered by Medicare?Stair lifts are among the most popular additions for seniors who want to age in place. The benefits of these devices – improved safety, enhanced confidence, minimal structural disruption – are both undeniable and incalculable. What is calculable, however, is the cost of a stair lift. A typical model can run between $2,500 and $5,500 for a straight staircase and $10,000 or more for a curved staircase. At the Barrier Free Store, we’ve installed thousands of stair lifts in homes all across the Upper Peninsula, and one of the most common questions we’re asked is whether or not Medicare will cover the cost of a stair lift. The answer is, unfortunately, no. Medicare classifies lifts as home modifications rather than “durable medical equipment.” But that doesn’t mean there aren’t other resources available to Michigan residents that can help offset the cost of a stair lift.

Medicaid Assistance

One such resource is Medicaid, which will often pay for the cost of a stair lift if it will “enable individuals to remain living in their homes and avoid nursing home placement.” To apply for financial aid, you’ll need to fill out a waiver. For homeowners in our state, that would be through the MI Choice Waiver program operated by the Michigan Department of Community Health’s (MDCH) Medical Services Administration (MSA). For more information contact your local Michigan Area Agency on Aging.

The Veterans Administration

Another resource that’s available to military veterans is the Veteran’s Administration. If you or your loved one is a veteran, the VA can provide assistance purchasing what they call a “stair glide”. The level of funding will likely depend on whether or not your need for the chair is the result of a service-related disability, but either way, the agency is usually the best first option for veterans. Reach out to your local VA to learn more about your options.

State Resources

Another general resource for information about state-run assistance programs for seniors in our area is the Upper Peninsula Commission for Area Progress (UPCAP), which serves the Upper Peninsula Area Agency on Aging as a regional coordinating body for Upper Peninsula residents. UPCAP has been serving senior citizens in Northern Michigan since 1961.


If you’re thinking about having a stair lift installed at your home in the Upper Peninsula, contact the Barrier Free Store today and schedule a complimentary consultation.

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