Have you had your Annual Wellness Visit?
Medicare now covers an annual wellness visit with your physician at no cost to you whether you are enrolled in original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan! This visit is an opportunity for you and your doctor to develop a personalized prevention plan that takes a comprehensive approach to improving your health and preventing disease. This means that you and your doctor can develop a strategy together to help manage your health care.
The annual wellness visit benefit includes the following services:
- Routine measurements, such as your height, weight, blood pressure, and body mass index (BMI)
- Review of your individual medical and family history
- Review of the medications, supplements, and vitamins that you are currently taking
- Discussion of the care you are currently receiving from other health care providers
- Review of your functional ability and level of safety (for example, your risk of falling at home), including any cognitive impairment, as well as a screening for depression
- Discussion of personalized health advice that takes into account your risk factors and specific health conditions or needs, including weight loss, physical activity, smoking cessation, fall prevention, and nutrition
- Discussion of referrals to other appropriate health education or preventive counseling services that may help you minimize or treat potential health risks
- Planning a schedule for the Medicare screening and preventive services you will need over the next five to 10 years.
Although the annual wellness visit is not the same thing as an annual physical exam, it provides you with the same opportunity to talk with your doctor about your health concerns. After your initial annual wellness visit, you are eligible for a follow-up or subsequent wellness visit every 12 months. The annual wellness visits are not subject to Medicare Part B deductibles, co-insurance, or copayments, which means that there is no expense to you.