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, Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) covers inpatient non-religious, non-medical care when all 3 of 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've filed a written election that states:
- You qualify for this type of care based on both your medical needs and your religious beliefs.
- Your election will be cancelled if you accept standard medical care.
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.