ReWalk Robotics has announced the first reimbursement for a personal exoskeleton system by a private U.S. insurer.
The coverage comes from a health plan contracted through Workers’ Compensation in the Midwest region, which purchased a ReWalk Personal Exoskeleton system for one of its beneficiaries who was injured while at work, according to a press release.
This reimbursement marks the first Workers’ Compensation payment for an exoskeleton system in the United States, and the second U.S. insurance payment to date. In June 2014, the James J. Peters VA Medical Center in Bronx, NY, became the first insurer in the U.S. to provide reimbursement for a ReWalk system to an Army veteran from the Vietnam Era.
“This is a milestone for the paraplegic community in the U.S. who wish to utilize exoskeleton technology in their homes and communities,” Larry Jasinski, MBA, ReWalk CEO, said in the release. “We are thrilled by the support of those insurers contracting with Workers’ Compensation, and the growing number of health care plans worldwide that recognize the benefits of exoskeletons and have followed through with reimbursement.”
The recipient is a 29-year-old man who suffered a spinal cord injury at work. The man was paralyzed from the waist down during the accident and has been using a wheelchair for more than 7 years. He is in the process of completing the ReWalk training program and will bring his unit home this month, according to the release.