Will Insurance Pay for an Adaptive Stroller?

Your health insurance company may pay for an adaptive stroller, but whether or not the claim will be accepted or denied depends on your child’s condition. You’ll need to get a doctor’s note explaining why your child needs the stroller. In your physician’s letter, they should avoid using the word “stroller” and instead refer to it as a “medical mobility device.”

The more medical documentation you have, the easier it will be to get your stroller approved. Keep reading to learn more about what kind of conditions a child may have that may qualify them for approval for an adaptive stroller and what you can do to prove medical necessity to your insurance company.

Why You Might Need an Adaptive Stroller

There are a variety of conditions children can have that can cause them to not be able to walk at all or to have so much difficulty walking that they need extra help. Your child may have muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, or spina bifida. Thousands of babies are born each year that will go on to need some assistance in order to get around.

If your child’s condition was the result of a birth injury that was caused by a doctor or other medical professional’s mistake, you may also be able to cover the cost of the adaptive stroller by filing a personal injury lawsuit to recover your damages. Visit to learn more about your options.

So how do you know if your child would benefit from an adaptive stroller? It may be a good option if they have trouble:

  • Sitting up to eat
  • Walking
  • Getting out to play with other kids
  • Supporting their head or body
  • Holding onto their toys

These strollers, which are also called “early intervention wheelchairs,” allow you to adjust them to suit a variety of different needs. Every child has unique mobility issues. You can use their features to give your child the support they need where they need it.

Adaptive Strollers vs. Wheelchairs

One issue with wheelchairs is their limitations. Wheelchairs can be bulky and difficult to navigate. They can also be difficult to load and unload into and out of your car or handicap accessible vehicle. Sadly, the difficulties involved in using wheelchairs can limit your child’s ability to interact with other kids and to explore the world around them.

The benefits of switching to an adaptive stroller are numerous. Depending on the model you choose, a stroller may make it easier for you to transport a child who uses a portable ventilator or oxygen tank. You also may be able to adjust it to make feeding your child easier. Your stroller also may come with a sunshade or a cup holder.

Many adaptive strollers also allow you to adjust them to control which direction your child is facing. When you’re pushing a wheelchair, you have no choice but to have your child facing away from you. That’s great when your child is in the mood to enjoy the scenery, but what if they are in the mood to look at you? A stroller can take care of that.

Adaptive Stroller for Child

How to Prove Your Child Needs an Adaptive Stroller

To prove to your insurance company that your child needs an adaptive stroller, you’ll want to get as much medical documentation as possible. The more letters you can get from specialists like doctors and physical therapists to prove your child’s need, the better.

If your child has some ability to walk, even if it’s not for long, one term you need to make sure your doctor uses in the letter is “community ambulator.” That means they need assistance to get around while they’re out in the community.

You will also want to make sure your doctors’ letters explain that it may not be safe for your child to get around safely without an adaptive stroller. Have a safety evaluation conducted to provide further documentation that not having a stroller is going to place extra strain on your child that could lead to costly medical issues.

If your insurance denies your claim, be sure to appeal. Every child deserves the chance to get out and have fun. Insurance companies are notoriously difficult to deal with, but with persistence, chances are you’ll be able to get your child the stroller they need.

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