As a mom of three I am very familiar with the process that it takes to get an insurance covered breast pump! I've used two different DME providers and two different OBGYNs, but the process was the same all three times.
This post is not sponsored, affiliated, or paid for in any way, I am sharing my honest experience with acquiring a breast pump through a specific provider I chose on my own.
I knew this time around that you could shop around a little bit, and see what different sites offer different pumps, and for different upgrade fees. I checked every single one that I could get my hands on, and I ended up going with one called the breastfeeding shop because they had some unique pump options that I could not find from other providers.
Fun fact: It's not difficult to get an insurance covered breast pump.
I will briefly go over the process it takes to get a breast pump covered by insurance, but please note that some insurance plans have different requirements, and you may be able to get one very early in your pregnancy, towards the end, or some require you to wait until after the baby is born! In my opinion, you want to have one ready, in case the baby comes early and you happen to need one. But if insurance won’t cover it, you’d have to buy out of pocket. Anyways, here’s how I got my insurance pump with my third baby.
First, I did a whole lot of research. I have state insurance, so not a lot of providers are in network. I had a lot more website options with my previous insurance plan! I googled all of the ones I could find and wrote down the pump options (for pumps I don't already have) and their upgrade fees, because some sites are lower or higher than others for the exact same pump.
When you find a site that you want to look at, you input your insurance information and then they'll show you (usually instantly) what your options are, what is covered completely and what costs an upgrade fee. Then you make your selection, check out, pay any upgrade fees or just checkout with the free option. Often times you can have the DME provider communicate with your OBGYN to get the prescription filled out, or you can move things a little faster by printing it out and having it signed while you're there to avoid lag time with waiting to hear back from the doctor.
I'll put an example here with what my options were from the provider I chose. Different providers have different pumps, prices, bundles, etc.
I put in my insurance information and was given the following options:
I will add an asterisk* next to pumps I already owned and was not considering as an option
Momcozy S12 Pro
Ameda Mya Joy Basic
Ameda Mya Joy with tote
Motif Luna (outlet only)*
Motif Luna (with chargeable battery)*
Zomee Z2 and Collection Cups*
Covered with Upgrade Fee:
Elvie Stride $35*
Original Elvie $360
Medela Freestyle Handsfree $147
Medela Pump In Style with Maxflow $15*
Medela Pump In Style With Maxflow and Tote $45
Momcozy M5 $30
Medela Sonata $155* (out of stock)
Motif Aura $130
Spectra S1 $45*
Spectra S1 with tote and cooler $105
Spectra Synergy Gold $105*
Spectra Synergy Gold Portable $150*
OG Willow $410
Willow Go $215*
A total of 29 different options, some were the same pump but with an added accessory or wearable cups instead of flanges. This is a really good variety compared to some other sites that I'd tried, and a handful of the upgrade fees are lower than other sites as well.
I was looking for something I didn't already have, and I have a lot of pumps. Most providers will have the well known big brands such as Spectra, Medela, Motif, Lansinoh, Willow, Elvie, etc. I was after some more unique brands as I have most of the big ones from my previous breastfeeding journey, but I wanted a cheap upgrade or free option rather than getting something expensive like the Willow or Elvie pumps.
After shopping around different providers I ended up going with the Breastfeeding Shop because they offered the Ardo Alyssa, and with my insurance plan it was completely covered. This brand isn't seen on many other sites and I was excited to find something different for no cost to me.
I went through with the "add to cart" and checkout process, and then received this email shortly after:
I was able to print out the prescription form they provided in the email, and bring it to my next appointment that week. My OB signed it for me and I emailed back a photo of it right away!
I sent that reply on June 19th, and on June 21st they had already shipped my pump. It came within a few days and I was very impressed with the speed, with my previous pregnancies I used a much larger DME provider and they took for EVER to communicate and send my pump both times.
I believe the Breastfeeding Shop is a smaller women-owned business, so they reply and move very quickly. I'm a person who would rather shop with a small business than a large one because they care more and usually work faster than large ones.
Overall, my experience getting a breast pump for my third baby was very easy. The hardest part was deciding which pump I wanted, honestly.
My baby is now a little over a month old, and I finally remembered to send in an inquiry about having replacement parts or milk bags covered by my insurance and sent via the breastfeeding shop. I don't think my insurance will cover it, but it was recommended by their social media manager (who is very attentive to DMs and replies quickly, by the way) that I check anyways just in case. I only just sent it today and am waiting to hear back, but I'll add an update to this post with their reply!
Looking for other pregnancy related resources? Check out some of my other posts:
More on pumping? I've got those too!