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HealthPartners

Coverage criteria policies

Complementary and alternative medicine

These services may or may not be covered by all HealthPartners plans. Please see your plan documents for your own coverage information. If there is a difference between this general information and your plan documents, your plan documents will be used to determine your coverage.

Administrative Process

Prior authorization is not required for complementary and alternative medicine.

Coverage

Complementary and alternative medicine is generally not covered per your plan documents. See exceptions per the indications listed below.

Indications that are covered

Diagnostic procedures, physical examinations, and treatments that are considered proven standards of care established by the medical community and that meet medical necessity criteria.

Indications that are not covered

Please note, this list is not all inclusive:

  1. Vitamins, nutritional supplements, or specially grown and prepared foods.
  2. Hair and fingernail analysis for mineral or trace mineral deficiencies.
  3. Chelation therapy, except for treatment of thalassemia or heavy metal poisoning.
  4. Shark cartilage for treatment of cancer.

Definitions

Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not generally considered part of conventional medicine. Complementary medicine is used together with conventional medicine, and alternative medicine is used in place of conventional medicine. While scientific evidence exists regarding some CAM therapies, for most there are key questions that are yet to be answered through well-designed scientific studies – questions such as whether these therapies are safe and whether they work for the purposes for which they are used.

Products

This information is for most, but not all, HealthPartners plans. Please read your plan documents to see if your plan has limits or will not cover some items. If there is a difference between this general information and your plan documents, your plan documents will be used to determine your coverage. These coverage criteria may not apply to Medicare Products if Medicare requires different coverage. For more information regarding Medicare coverage criteria or for a copy of a Medicare coverage policy, contact Member Services at 952-883-7979 or 1-800-233-9645.

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Policy activity

  • 09/01/1994 - Date of origin
  • 08/01/2017 - Effective date
Review date
  • 07/2017
Revision date
  • 07/17/2017

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