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Are Incontinence Supplies Tax-Deductible?
As the costs of medical care and supplies continue to rise, consumers benefit from researching ways to be reimbursed for as many of these expenses as possible. For those with incontinence, check into these areas to help defray the costs.
Your health insurance plan
While many private insurance plans do not cover incontinence supplies, you may be reimbursed through a health savings account (HSA) or a flexible spending account (FSA).
With an HSA, funds contributed to the account are not subject to federal income tax at the time of deposit, and funds roll over and accumulate year to year if not used. With an FSA, an employee sets aside a portion of earnings, which are not subject to payroll taxes, to pay for qualified expenses; funds deposited into an FSA must be used within the calendar year. With both types of accounts, receipts are submitted to a plan administrator and participants receive reimbursement checks.
Medicare is a health insurance program for people age 65 or older, people under age 65 with certain disabilities, and people of all ages with end-stage renal disease. Medicare programs include hospital insurance, medical insurance and prescription drug coverage. To see if you may be eligible for benefits, use the Medicare Eligibility Tool at medicare.gov.
Medicaid is health insurance that helps many people who can’t afford medical care pay for some or all of their medical bills. If you are a U.S. citizen with limited income and you qualify for Medicaid because of age or disability, Medicaid may send payments directly to your health care providers. Find more information on qualifications and to find a program in your state at cms.gov.
County offices for the aging
Check your telephone book’s county government section for aging and disability resource centers. These county offices may be able to direct you to resources to help you receive reimbursement.
Some areas offers diaper banks, where products are donated by organizations or individuals, then given to people who cannot afford them. Although many diaper banks focus on newborns, some include incontinence supplies for adults. Check your phone book or look online to see if your city or state offers this service. Your local senior center may be able to help you find resources as well.
Outside the United States
For information on resources for citizens in countries other than the United States, visit your country’s government website.
Shopping for the Right Incontinence Product
Consumers buying incontinence products the first time can easily be confused which product, brand, style, size or absorbency to buy. And once opened, they can’t be returned, so mistakes can be costly. Here are some helpful resources to help you avoid this problem.
• Explanation of types (pull-ons, adjustable underwear, briefs, undergarments and more):
• Incontinence Product Finder (quickly and easily sort though nearly 500 choices):
• Samples to try before you buy (choose from more 100 samples to try first):
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About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s Web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The CareGiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wis. Visit caregiverpartnership.com to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.