Does Medicare Cover Shoes for Diabetics?

Medicare Benefits Solutions
Sep 7, 2022

Foot injuries can happen to virtually anyone, and if you suffer from mobility issues, you may be more prone to foot injuries than others. However, there are also plenty of conditions like poor circulation, diabetes and congenital defects that can affect your feet and cause pain and difficulty getting around.

To address these concerns, you may require medications or even surgery, but many orthopedic problems can be treated first with custom shoes or inserts. This may have you wondering if Medicare covers the cost of diabetic shoes, insoles, or inserts.

TIP: Sign up for the Medicare Benefits newsletter and get more of your podiatry and footcare questions answered.

Does Medicare Cover the Cost of Orthotics

Original Medicare insurance typically covers shoes for diabetics under Part B; however, there are some restrictions. Medicare coverage recipients who require shoes for diabetic conditions will usually be able to receive one pair of custom-molded shoes and inserts and/or one pair of extra-depth shoes per calendar year.

Additionally, Medicare will cover two pairs of inserts for custom-molded shoes and three pairs of inserts for extra-depth shoes on top of the inserts that come with the original shoes. If you require new shoes or more inserts within the calendar year, you will likely have to cover the cost on your own.

TIP: Read our companion blog filled with tips on how to get Medicare to pay for diabetic shoes and inserts.

Medicare Coverage of Therapeutic Footwear

Like with other durable medical equipment covered under Medicare Part B, diabetic shoes and inserts are generally covered for 80% of the cost. This leaves you to cover the remaining 20%. Covered diabetic shoes and inserts will also need to be purchased from a Medicare-approved provider. If you purchase shoes or inserts on your own from a non-approved footwear retailer, you will be responsible for 100% of the cost.

Although Medicare Part B is the primary coverage source for diabetic shoes and inserts, you might run into a situation in which custom shoes and inserts are required during a stay at a skilled nursing facility or hospital. If the shoes and inserts are provided by the facility, Medicare Part A may apply coverage instead of Part B. Medicare coverage provided under Part A is the inpatient benefit and covers the cost of services rendered while admitted to a medical facility for care.

Since Medicare Part D covers prescription drugs, it would not directly apply to coverage for diabetic shoes. Part D may apply if you are prescribed medications to treat diabetes in addition to the prescription of diabetic shoes and inserts.

TIP: Use the Medicare plan finder to find out if your existing plan covers podiatry services.

Diabetic Shoes and Medicare Advantage

Are you wondering: Do Medicare Advantage plans cover diabetic shoes and inserts? If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, you already receive the same coverage offered by Original Medicare, as Medicare Advantage plans are required to offer this coverage at a minimum. You may, however, be entitled to additional benefits through your plan provider since many Medicare Advantage plans provide extra coverage for recipients.

Some plans may include additional pairs of shoes and/or inserts at a discount or you may be able to purchase diabetic shoes from a wider network of providers. To learn more, you will need to speak directly with a representative from your Medicare Advantage plan administration office.

TIP: Discover 7 reasons to switch your Medicare Advantage plan.

Find a new Medicare plan

Get recommendations based on what's important to you, and compare them to your existing plan.

How Do Orthopedic Shoes Help Diabetics?

Orthopedic shoes and inserts often referred to simply as orthotics, can be used to correct foot conditions in some patients, while in others, these medical devices can be used to alleviate symptoms enough to allow for normal mobility. This may be true for individuals who are facing diabetes, but orthotics will typically be used in combination with medications and lifestyle adjustments.

TIP: Find out which Medicare plans offer the best coverage for diabetic podiatry and footcare services and compare them against your existing coverage.

Got questions?

Call a licensed sales agent at

877-406-1753 or TTY 771

Mon – Fri 5am – 6pm PT | Sat 5am – 5pm PT | Sunday   Closed

Send us a message

We aim to reply within 24 hours.

    Medicare Benefits Solutions is a non-government website. This is a solicitation for insurance. By submitting information on this site, I am providing my written consent for Medicare Benefits Solutions, herein after referred to as “Medicare Benefits”, which is a brand operated by HealthCompare Insurance Services Inc., its sales agents, or affiliates to contact me (even if I’m on a state or national do not call registry) at the phone number or email address listed to provide me with quotes or information about Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, and Medicare Part D plans. I further consent to such calls or texts sent via autodialer, automated technology, prerecorded message and/or artificial voice. I understand my consent is not a condition of purchase and that I can revoke my consent at any time via Additional charges may apply to SMS, call, or Internet usage depending on your data providers.

    Find a plan

    Get plan recommendations

    Compare your current Medicare plan to our recommendations – then choose the plan that gives you more of the things you want.

    Find a new Medicare plan

    Click here to find out more

    Get a plan recommendation based on what's important to you.