Medicare may cover items and services in religious nonmedical health care institutions (RNHCIs) only if you qualify for hospital or skilled nursing facility (SNF) care. Medicare will also only cover the inpatient non-religious, non-medical items and services, like room and board, unmedicated wound dressings, or use of a simple walker (items or services that don’t require a doctor’s order or prescription).
Medicare doesn’t cover the religious portion of this type of care. However,
covers inpatient non-religious, non-medical care when these conditions are met:
- The religious nonmedical health care institution is currently certified to participate in Medicare.
- The religious nonmedical health care institution Utilization Review Committee agrees that you would require hospital or SNF care if you weren’t in the religious nonmedical health care institution.
- You have a written election on file with Medicare that your need for religious nonmedical health care institution care is based on both your eligibility and religious beliefs. The election must also indicate that if you decide to accept standard medical care, you’ll revoke the election and will have to wait 1 year after the first revocation and 5 years after subsequent revocations to be eligible for a new election to get religious nonmedical health care institution care services.
You're always able to get medically necessary Part A services.
Religious beliefs prohibit your use of conventional and unconventional medical care in religious nonmedical health care institutions.