House bill would require insurance companies to cover costs of prosthetics

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FLINT (WJRT) (06/25/18) -- An Upper Michigan lawmaker has introduced legislation that would require insurance companies to cover the costs of prosthetics for amputees.

Mike Bugg, Owner of Orthotech Prosthetics & Orthotics in mid Michigan says he supports House Bill 6085, introduced by Rep. Beau LaFave (R-Iron Mountain).

"People really, they forget, there's more amputees out there than anyone would ever imagine, and so the problem is a lot of the items aren't covered," Bugg said.

The bill would be similar to how a hip replacement or other implanted devices are covered.

Currently, how a prosthesis is covered under someone's health insurance depends on the company and coverage a person has.

The bill would require all insurers to cover those costs completely.

Bugg says, often times people simply can't afford the devices, which can run anywhere from a few thousand dollars to upwards of $75,000 depending on the device.

"What this bill actually does is it offers to the patient the ease, it's not so stressful for them and it offers them componentry that they might not be able to have," he said.

Under the bill, coverage would not include repair or replacement due to neglect or misuse.

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