Durable medical equipment can help you with home care. The description is any type of equipment used in a home environment to provide better quality care or quality of life. Size doesn't matter when it comes to this type of medical equipment. Such equipment may range from everything to a catheter to a wheelchair to CPAP equipment.
Durable medical equipment used in home-based environments offer thousands of supplies, tools and equipment for taking care of a loved one diagnosed with any medical condition. From incontinence supplies to and enteral feeding tubes, supplies for diabetics including insulin pumps, or ambulatory products such as walkers, wheelchairs or rollators, all are considered types of durable equipment.
For example, a raised toilet seat is a type of medical equipment that may make it easier for your loved one to toilet themselves due to greater stability, reduced pain and required physical joint action.
Ambulatory products such as walkers, tri-legged canes, crutches, and rollators provide greater access to seniors with balance, strength or stability problems. Such types of ambulatory products also make providing care for an elderly individual easier on the caregiver.
Durable medical equipment may also include exercise therapy products including pedal exercisers, exercise bands and accessories, stretching and balance products, range of motion exercisers and pulleys, or even weighted medicine balls.
Patient lift and slings are especially beneficial for caregivers who are not strong enough to safely move their loved ones from a bed to a chair or vice versa. Electric lifts come in a variety of sizes and models and through the use of a sling can safely lift individuals up to 400-pound weight capacity. Such lifts are available in hydraulic or electric models, and come with a variety of accessories including slings padding and styles to help facilitate toileting, bathing, and general daily activities or transfers.
Some of the most common types of equipment include mechanical or medical beds, bed rails and inflatable or pressure-relief mattresses and surfaces. Long- term care beds with trapeze adapter frames, as well as crank or electronic lifting mechanisms may offer a variety of positions that help reduce the risk of bed sores (decubitus ulcers) as well as make regular turning or position changes easier on a caregiver.
Durable equipment may also include aids to daily living or dressing aids, bariatric products, eating and drinking aids and tools, and hearing assistance devices.
There really is no limit to the types of equipment you may find at a medical supply store in your community or online. Making your job as a caregiver easier as well as increasing your potential to provide superlative and quality patient care often relies on your access to equipment. Whether you're looking for non-slip strips, or bariatric wheelchairs, diabetic supplies, or orthopedic or incontinence supplies, durable medical supplies and equipment improves quality of life not only for your loved one, but yourself as a caregiver.
Dozens of manufacturers provide equipment, some of the most common being Johnson & Johnson, Invacare, and Kimberly-Clark. Many durable medical equipment expenses are reimbursed through Medicare services as long as the supplies or equipment are prescribed by your loved one's doctor for use in a home environment.
Remember - only medical equipment prescribed by your or your loved one's doctor could be covered under Medicare.
Ensure that your medical supply provider or supply store has enrolled in Medicare and has a Medicare supplier number. Such suppliers must meet strict standards in order to obtain a Medicare supplier number. If the provider does not have such a number, Medicare won't pay any reimbursement claims.
Your share of payment depends on the type of durable medical equipment (DME) that you rent or purchase as well as whether your supplier is a participating supplier. Medicare Part B benefits typically pay for durable medical services or supplies. For more information regarding coverage under Medicare, please click on Medicare.gov.