Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Guest Darla K

Sonicare Toothbrush

Recommended Posts

Guest Darla K

:rolleyes:

I have a client who is trying to claim reimbursement for his Sonicare Toothbrush that was purchased by his dentist. I was wondering since this isn't typically something that is covered by insurance companies, is it eligible for reimbursement? I just thought that I would get some input on the subject since it is a toothbrush and you can't normally claim reimbursement for an "over the counter" toothbrush, so I don't see why this would be covered too, but please provide some input for me, and correct me if I am wrong in thinking that this is not covered for reimbursement.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You posted that it was "purchased by his dentist". Assuming that you really meant "from his dentist", I wonder what was the reason for the purchase? Was it part of a specific treatment program for a specified disease?

Was it part of a general maintenance program?

I think that the difference between this case and an OTC purchase needs to be clarified.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My FSA Reimbursement matrix says regarding battery powered toothbrushes - "Possibly, but only if prescribed to treat a specific dental ailment".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Darla K

His dentist recommended that he purchase the toothbrush. We are trying to get ahold of him to find out if it was for a medical reason or just to better clean his teeth. If it is for a medical reason and he gets a letter from the dentist is it covered then, or is it just flat out not reimbursable? Please let me know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good grief! "Recommended"?

My doc might recommend I take two aspirin, or even "prescribe" an over-the-counter medication, but that does not mean it is eligible for a medical deduction or covered in a flex plan.

Just deny it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest lmrice

We had the same scenario last year and the TPA accepted it with a RX from the dentist.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

pax

A physician could write a prescription for an otc medication just to make it eligible and to certify the medical necessity. Take a look at some of the Rev Rulings and other guidance issued in the last 2 years regarding weight-loss, cayenne pepper, Christian Scientist practitioners, wheel chair accessible vehicles, stop-smoking treatment etc. to see what the IRS position is.

As the IRS points out it is not the fact that it is prescription or OTC but whether or not it is for the treatment etc etc of a eligible condition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to open a can of worms here, but there is a distinction between drugs and non-drugs.

For drugs, the drug cannot be one that can be obtained over the counter. Thus, even if a Dr. prescribes it, it's not reimbursable. For example, ibuprofin can be obtained over the counter. If a Dr. prescribes a high dosage ibuprofin pill, it's not reimbursable even though the higher dosage horse size pill can only be obtained with a prescription. The reason is because the drug itself can be obtained over the counter. The reason for this IRS position is because of the wording in IRC 213. Having stated that, many TPAs don't bother looking for this when processing claims.

Anything other than drugs is subject to the "but for" test (this was how an IRS representative described the test). "But for" a specific medical condition, would the item (e.g., therapy, swimming pool, electric toothbrush, I even heard of a claim for a breast pump) be necessary. This is a very subjective test and I think the majority of TPAs would find something in writing from a Dr. sufficient to reimburse the claim.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest bobbi

As an FSA TPA, I would require that there be a specific condition in place to warrant or treat with the use of the purchased item. This might be that he has periodontal disease, which can be treated in a number of ways including the use of this special equipment. Remember that there is a difference between medical equipment/supplies and OTC medicines. (people seem to get that mixed up a lot!) There is always danger that a personal use item doesn't not meet certain tests, the "but for" test should be applied. That is, the ee would not have this expense, but for the specific condition...A written notice from the doctor would be absolutely necessary, indicating why it is necessary. Only after an ee has gone through those knds of hoops, would I consider reimbursing. (I'll bet the ee didn't consider this expense when estimating figures during the open enrollment, so perhaps he could wait and submit other claims during the plan year and hold that til the end...)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Was not at all aware of such products that can be used for dental care. My friend is planning to visit _________________ suggested by her cousin for regular check up. Her pale teeth are also a reason. Quite fed up of using home remedies as these are not at all effective. Will accompany her to the doctor of needed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Expenses paid for the purchase of electric toothbrushes are reimbursable when submitted with a physician's diagnosis letter.  My suggestion to you would be to tell the employee that the expense is not reimbursable until a diagnosis letter is submitted to you/administrator.  The term “recommended” means nothing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...