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FAQs

View Frequently Asked Questions

We've compiled a list of our frequently asked questions. Take a look at the answers below or contact us if you aren't finding the information you need.

GENERAL QUESTIONS

The questions below this section are general medical equipment questions.

How does CareCredit work?

For over 30 years, CareCredit has been providing a valuable financing option for treatments and procedures that typically are not covered by insurance, or for times when insurance doesn't cover the full amount. CareCredit is also used by cardholders to pay for deductibles and co-payments. Click here for options to apply.

Can I get education for my equipment? Will you train my homecare nurse?

Yes. All education for families and non-healthcare professional caregivers of our patients is free of charge; $5.00 per hour for equipment education classes for healthcare professionals with Reliable Medical patients; $10.00 per hour for classes relating to cares/skills/assessment for healthcare professionals with Reliable Medical patients; and $35 per hour for all classes provided to healthcare professionals who do not provide care for a Reliable Medical patient.

Can you dispose of my old/existing bed or chair when you deliver my new equipment?

Unfortunately no, Reliable Medical cannot dispose of your existing furniture or equipment. You will be responsible for moving and disposing of your property.

Can you move my existing chair or bed when you deliver my new equipment?

Reliable Medical requires that your home be ready for your new equipment and that all obstructing furniture be removed before we arrive. If you are not ready when we arrive, it’s possible that we will have to reschedule your delivery for a different day.

Do you deliver?

We can deliver most of our products either through carriers such as UPS®, FedEx®, and Spee-Dee or one of our company vehicles. Shipping companies usually deliver the next business day and, if your equipment will be delivered by us, we’ll give you a date and time window when we’ll arrive.

Does Reliable Medical Supply purchase or sell used equipment?

Reliable Medical does not deal in used equipment.

How do I check the status of my equipment?

To check the status of your order you can call 763-255-3798 or fill out our contact form.

Is there a resource to help with documentation for reimbursement?

Click here for more information.

What do I do if my equipment breaks down?

Give us a call or stop by any of our offices. Reliable Medical will send your equipment in for an evaluation and provide you with a rental product for use while yours is being repaired. We will check to see if your equipment is covered under warranty or if insurance will cover repair and/or replacement.

What if my equipment needs service or repair?

Reliable Medical does have a state-of-the art service department and many of the items we sell can be serviced or repaired right at one of our locations. Some of the items we sell cannot be serviced because parts are not available. Products like standard walkers or bath chairs fall into this category. Diagnostic products like blood pressure monitors need to be sent into the manufacturer for recalibration on specialized equipment.

What information should my detailed prescription have on it?

A detailed prescription often needs to have several key items including, but not limited to:

  • Length of need (if known)
  • Patient’s full name and date of birth (DOB)
  • Appropriate ICD-10 diagnosis codes supporting prescription
  • A detailed description of the product or service needed
  • Physician’s signature (no stamps) and date

What is a detailed prescription?

A detailed prescription is a documentation that is provided by your physician to support the need for the product/service provided. These documents must include the name of the patient, date of birth (DOB), a description of the item/service that is to be provided, length of need (if applicable), physician’s signature and date.

What is a prior authorization request?

A prior authorization request (PAR) is made with certain insurance policies. Information requested by the insurance company often involves a detailed prescription signed by your doctor for the products requested in addition to supporting notes, documentation or other medical information describing the medical need for this product. This information is then submitted to the insurance company and they evaluate if they will provide coverage. This process can take as little as two weeks or as long as one or two months, depending on your insurance.

What items are NOT covered by Medicare?

Standing frames and all bath equipment and power seat elevators are not covered by Medicare.

REHAB QUESTIONS

The questions below this section are rehab equipment questions.

How long will it be until I receive my new power wheelchair?

The length of the process can vary. Generally, this process takes anywhere from 8 to 12 weeks but may take longer for complex orders.

How often can I get a new wheelchair?

Most insurance companies consider the useful life of durable medical equipment to be five years. Their decision can be based upon the repair history of the chair and any current repairs needed. The other scenario that may qualify you for a new chair is a significant change in your physical status. Contact your insurance carrier to determine your exact coverage or contact one of our rehab ATPs to assist you.

What steps are involved in getting a new power wheelchair?

The typical steps that need to be followed are:

  • An evaluation with a therapist
  • Trials of equipment (if needed)
  • Documentation gathered and signed
  • Authorizations received
  • Then, equipment ordered, set up and delivered

What steps are required for Medicare and Medicare Replacement policies for obtaining a power wheelchair or manual wheelchair?

Medicare replacement policies follow the Medicare guidelines for obtaining equipment.

Where can I get a mobility evaluation?

Click the appropriate PDF below for a list of some of the available clinics in Minnesota.

Mobility Evaluation Clinics – Adult
Mobility Evaluation Clinics – Pediatric

Will insurance pay for both a power and a manual wheelchair?

Most insurance companies will only cover one mobility device. Contact your insurance carrier to determine your exact coverage.

All benefits quoted are a general outline of coverage, not a guarantee of payment. Coverage is subject to all other terms, conditions, authorizations, network requirements, and definitions in the subscriber and provider contracts.

Will my insurance cover a new power wheelchair?

Most insurance companies provide coverage for power mobility. However, it is recommended to call the number on the back of your insurance card to verify your coverage. In order for your insurance to cover your new equipment, you will need a mobility evaluation. The evaluation documentation will determine if you qualify under your insurance policy. Our staff will assist you in determining coverage.

All benefits quoted are a general outline of coverage, not a guarantee of payment. Coverage is subject to all other terms, conditions, authorizations, network requirements, and definitions in the subscriber and provider contracts.

RESPIRATORY QUESTIONS

The questions below this section are respiratory equipment questions.

Are there any operating instructions for my oxygen concentrator, liquid oxygen system or my oxygen regulator?

How do I care for my CPAP / BiLevel mask?

Daily and weekly cleaning is needed to extend the life and fit of your product. Click here for CPAP cleaning guidelines.

How do I change the pressure setting on my CPAP / BiLevel equipment?

Your pressure setting is a prescribed value based on your individual therapy needs. If you feel the setting needs to be adjusted, please contact your physician for direction. If you have a detailed prescription for pressure change, stop by any of our offices and one of our representatives will be happy to adjust your settings. No appointment is needed, but making an appointment will help reduce your wait time.

How often can I get new CPAP / BiLevel supplies?

Please refer to the product replacement guide below. This is only a general guideline and your insurance carrier may have slightly different requirements.

  • Complete Mask: One every six months
  • Pillows/Nasal Cushion: Two pair every month (OK to get three months’ supply at once)
  • Full Face Cushion: One every month (OK to get three months’ supply at once)
  • Headgear: One every six months
  • Tubing: One every three months
  • Disposable Filters: Two every month (white, white/blue – OK to get three months’ supply at once)
  • Non-disposable Filters: One every six months (gray)
  • Humidification Chamber: One every six months
  • Chinstrap: One every six months

How often does my oxygen concentrator need to be serviced?

Manufacturers’ guidelines recommend a maintenance check once per year. At this time, our technician will check the operation of your concentrator and may change filters and tubing at that time.

I am getting a lot of water in my CPAP / Bilevel tubing and mask. Why is this happening and how do I stop it?

This is called rain-out and often occurs when the air in the room is cooler than the air coming out of your humidifier. You can decrease the heat setting on your humidifier if a lower setting is comfortable for you. Reliable Medical also has a selection of tubing insulators that can be purchased in our offices. These insulators wrap around your tubing to keep the air temperature more consistent and provide you with the humidity you need without that irritating rain-out.

I am planning a vacation. What should I know about traveling with my CPAP?

Click here for a document on proper care when traveling with your CPAP. Depending on your method of travel and where you are staying, there are a few considerations you should follow when traveling with your CPAP.

I am using a ventilator for open mouthpiece ventilation. Do you have an educational form I can reference for appropriate use?

Click here for an educational piece you can use for a reference. Feel free to call one of our offices and speak to a respiratory therapist for more information.

I have a sore on the bridge of my nose from my CPAP mask. How do I fix this?

If your mask worked well to begin with, you may just need a new mask cushion. Over time, the silicone in the cushion will break down with normal use. Regular replacement of your supplies will keep the materials fresh and well-fitting. See CPAP / Bilevel replacement guidelines above.

If it’s a new mask, you may need a different size or type to achieve a good fit. Please call our office and schedule an appointment with one of our fitting experts and we will work on finding the interface that best fits your facial structure.

I have many questions about my sleep apnea and need for CPAP therapy. Where can I find answers?

There are many resources on the internet. You may also find answers by participating in one of the many CPAP support groups or chat rooms. One site we have received much positive feedback on is cpaptalk.comClick here for our CPAP FAQ education sheet.

DURABLE MEDICAL EQUIPMENT (DME) QUESTIONS

The questions below this section are durable medical equipment questions.

Can I order a lift mechanism and convert my existing recliner chair?

No. Lift chairs are specifically designed and built to work with the lift mechanism, and a standard recliner chair cannot be retrofitted. The frame of a standard chair is configured differently and would not accept or work with the scissor mechanism, which works in conjunction with the lift actuator.

Can I return the bath chair if I don't like it or it doesn't fit?

Bath equipment is non-returnable due to infection-control issues. This is a government standard.

Will my insurance cover a lift chair?

Insurance companies, including Medicare, only allow for and consider the lifting mechanism to be medically necessary. What this means is that, if you get funding, only the lift mechanism of the chair will be covered with the remainder being your financial responsibility.

Will my insurance cover a scooter?

Most insurance carriers have a Power Operated Vehicle (POV) or scooter benefit. Coverage criteria does vary, but most would consider a scooter medically necessary if it is to be used primarily in the home to perform mobility-related daily activities. Use of a scooter outside the home is not considered medically necessary, and would therefore likely not be covered. Most carriers have a prior authorization process, which we will be happy to guide you through. Often this includes a home evaluation where a mobility specialist will bring a demo unit to your home so we can document that your home is accessible, or could be made so, and you can operate the scooter through the main areas of your home.

SUPPLY QUESTIONS

The questions below this section are supply questions.

Can I clean my catheters?

Manufacturers do not recommend the cleaning of catheters.

Can I just come in and buy a catheter?

We can only sell an invasive catheter based on the order of a physician through a detailed prescription. The order will specify the French size (diameter) and tip style. You can purchase catheters from us out of pocket if you have a detailed prescription. We will need to keep a copy of the detailed prescription on file. Catheters come in individual, sterile packaging so we will sell you as many as you wish to purchase.

Can I purchase other urological supplies out of pocket?

We can sell any non-invasive supplies without a detailed prescription. Common items would be collection bags and male external/condom catheters.

Can you automatically send me my supplies each month?

No. There are several reasons why we cannot automatically send your monthly supplies, which are governed by your insurance and federal regulations. However, if you would prefer, we can contact you each month via phone or email to confirm whether or not you would like another shipment. You are encouraged to email your order each month and you will receive a confirmation reply that your order has been processed.

Can you ship my monthly order?

You can come to our store to pick up your order or we can ship it out. Most orders will ship out the same day you order if received before 3:00 p.m. (CST) and would normally be delivered the next business day.

What happens if my stockings don’t fit?

Make an appointment to bring them back and get re-measured. The stocking companies support us and wish for you to have proper compression therapy. They will replace anything that doesn’t fit with a new garment that does fit at no cost to you. Unfortunately, it’s possible for your leg to change size from the time you’re measured to the time you get your stockings. This does not happen often, but when it does we will take care of it for you.

What should I do before I call Reliable Medical Supply to order new supplies?

If you’re going to have insurance pay for the supplies, make sure you have copies of all your insurance cards and a doctor’s detailed prescription. If you’re not going to use insurance, then these items are usually unnecessary. A few supplies cannot be sold without a doctor’s detailed prescription.

What should I expect to happen if I come into Reliable Medical Supply to order new supplies?

A staff member will greet you and ask you to fill out a short form to get your information and your purpose for visiting. Then an appropriate staff member will assist you with your medical equipment needs. If you’re going to have insurance pay for the supplies, make sure you have copies of all your insurance cards and a doctor’s detailed prescription. If you’re not going to use insurance, then these items are usually unnecessary. A few supplies cannot be sold without a doctor’s detailed prescription.

It may take some time to verify your insurance before your order can be dispensed. You’re welcome to wait in our showroom or come back at a later time. You will be required to sign some documentation and you may need to pay for a portion of the cost deemed necessary by your insurance before you can take your equipment.

When should I call to place a supply order?

If possible, call to order replenishment of supplies a week in advance. This will help ensure you receive your products in a timely manner and reduce the possibility of back-order items. If you’re having items shipped, please allow extra time for shipment.

Will my supplies be covered by my insurance?

This depends on your specific supplies and the type of insurance you have. As a reference, Medicare does not cover oral nutritional supplements, Medicaid will cover some oral nutritional supplements depending on your diagnosis, and private insurance is dependent on your type of policy. Tube feeding is typically covered with certain diagnoses; however, there are often limitations on quantities that are covered. Many times a prior authorization request will be required for nutritional products.

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