If you’re on Medicare or looking into your Medicare options, you may have heard about fitness benefits and gym memberships offered by some Medicare plans. Some program names that may ring a bell are SilverSneakers and Cigna Active.
In some cases, Medicare does cover gym memberships and other fitness benefits. It all depends on the specific Medicare coverage you’re enrolled in. Original Medicare does not provide fitness perks, but Medicare Advantage plans do. In this article, we’ll explain a bit more about how these fitness programs work and how you can claim your fitness benefits.
If you’re having trouble claiming your fitness benefit or are unsure how it works, we’re here to help! Our team of Medicare Advocates specializes in helping Medicare recipients use their benefits and understand how their plans work.
Not every Medicare Advantage plan will cover the cost of a gym membership, but 98% of Medicare Advantage plans provide some type of fitness benefit.
KFF found that a slightly lower percentage of UnitedHealthcare beneficiaries are offered fitness perks (96%).
You may be wondering why Original Medicare and Medicare Supplement plans don’t pay for gym memberships or offer fitness benefits. The question you should be asking, however, is why Medicare Advantage plans do. If you think about how employer health insurance plans work, they don’t generally offer to pay for gym memberships, so why would Medicare?
Fitness benefits are one of the marketing tactics used by insurance companies to attract Medicare beneficiaries to their Medicare Advantage plans. This isn’t to say that the benefits aren’t good. You should just be sure that your primary healthcare needs are met rather than prioritizing a free gym membership.
Our team of licensed Medicare Advisors always makes sure that your doctors and prescriptions are covered and your financial and healthcare needs are met first. Then, we’ll see how we can maximize other benefits that are important to you.