Cigna Corporation has revised its policy regarding coverage of exoskeleton medical devices for persons with spinal cord injury (SCI). It will now review submissions from beneficiaries on a case-by-case basis to consider providing coverage based on medical criteria, ReWalk Robotics Ltd reports.

Previously, Cigna had a non-coverage policy.

This policy revision is reportedly the first of its kind by a major private insurer for individuals eligible to use exoskeleton devices. While the policy change has already taken effect, the formal policy change will be updated in Cigna’s next revision cycle, expected to be published in or around Q3 2019, according to a news release from ReWalk Robotics Ltd, headquartered in Marlborough, Mass.

“This is a major milestone for healthcare beneficiaries in the United States,” says ReWalk CEO Larry Jasinski.

“Cigna is leading by example with its understanding of emerging technologies, a focus on improving the overall health and well-being of beneficiaries, and most of all, in the development of progressive policies. This new policy is expected to have an immediate impact on the lives of qualified beneficiaries who will now have access to life-changing medical devices.”

This policy update marks the latest national decision in the US for exoskeleton devices for spinal cord injured individuals. In 2015, the US Department of Veterans Affairs issued a national policy for the evaluation, training, and procurement of ReWalk Personal exoskeleton systems for all qualifying veterans across the United States, the release continues.

“ReWalk has prioritized interacting directly with payors and educating them regarding the benefits of exoskeletons use, and Cigna’s decision comes after providing them the most recent evidence. We anticipate that other payors will follow Cigna’s leadership in providing the latest and most current technologies for their members,” Jasinski adds.

[Source(s): ReWalk Robotics Ltd, PRNewswire]