Friday, February 8, 2013

Breastfeeding, Insurance and FSA's

The Medela Symphony is covered by insurance
or you can pay with your FSA card.
Over the last couple of weeks, we've fielded many calls asking about insurance coverage for breastfeeding needs. The Affordable Health Care Act does offer some specific benefits for women.  At A Nurturing Moment we can help you file for an insurance pump through Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Tricare, Aetna, United Health Care and Cigna. If you need to rent a pump, we will give you the paperwork you need to file it as a FSA expense and you can pay with your FSA card here.

Many employers offer a FSA (Flexible Spending Account) as part of their benefit package. When you buy a covered item from A Nurturing Moment, you can just whip out your FSA card and use it to pay since we are now accredited to accept FSA cards!

So just what breastfeeding and maternity-related items are covered by insurance or FSA? While this may vary slightly from company to company, the following list is based on items that are considered tax deductible medical expenses in 2013.
Need an SNS? Use
your FSA card to
pay for it!

  • Rental or purchase of a breast pump and accessories 
  • Products that assist lactation (Supplemental Nursing System, transport bag, cooling elements)
  • Lactation consultant visits
  • Nutritional or herbal supplements ONLY if they are recommended by a medical practitioner as treatment for a specific medical condition diagnosed by a physician. (if you want to submit your galactagogue for reimbursement or use your FSA card, you need to have a prescription or a note from a doctor recommending you take it)
  • Chiropractic care (including Webster maneuver to help a breech baby turn)
  • Acupuncture (sometimes used to treat infertility and to help induce labor)
  • Childbirth classes -  Class time instruction specifically related to childbirth (including breathing and relaxation techniques, stages and phases of labor, labor and delivery procedures, birthing positions, movies depicting childbirth) is a qualified medical expense. You must document the portion of class time spent on these areas and prorate it. 
  • Cord Blood - when deemed medically necessary by a health care professional, the cost of harvesting and storing cord blood is a covered expense. You must submit evidence of medical necessity for this to be covered.
  • Licensed midwife
  • Yeast infection medication (must be prescribed by a physician)
Now let's take a look at what isn't covered:
  • Nursing bras
  • Bottles and infant feeding supplies
  • Breastfeeding pillow
  • Diapers - UNLESS they are necessary to relieve the effects of a particular disease
  • Doulas
  • Breastfeeding Class
Be sure to talk with your insurance company to ascertain exactly what coverage you have. If you have an FSA card, you should have a guide that gives you specifics for your plan. Some items do have actual insurance codes; any time you need a  receipt for insurance or taxes, we'll be happy to provide it!

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