For optimal health well into your golden years, self-care is a must. Part of excellent self-care includes taking steps to stop illnesses before they start and catching any health complications early.
At Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours in Layton, Utah, our board-certified providers help you do just that with our specialized Medicare exams and services. We also understand Medicare plans aren’t always easy to understand.
To help ensure you get the preventive care you need, we’ve created this guide explaining which common screenings and services are included with your Medicare plan. Keep reading to get the information you must have for excellent health.
Understanding Medicare Part B coverage
Medicare covers many preventive services and screenings to keep you in the pink of health. When you catch problematic health conditions early, treatment is typically more effective. Plus, preventive care helps stop you from catching certain illnesses, like shingles and COVID-19.
Medicare Part B works like medical health insurance, helping you get your annual wellness visit and many of the preventive care screenings and services you need for optimal health. Here’s a look at what’s covered:
Annual Wellness Visits (AWVs)
If you’re new to Medicare, you get a onetime “Welcome to Medicare” physical exam within the first 12 months of signing up for Medicare Part B.
This is a time when your Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours provider reviews your medical record, conducts a physical exam, talks to you about preventive services, and makes sure you get referrals to specialists if needed.
Once you’re an established Medicare Part B patient, you’re eligible for an “Annual Wellness Visit” (AWV) every year. Before this visit, you fill out a Health Risk Assessment. At your appointment, your provider reviews it to learn about your health.
Your AWV is similar to the annual physicals you’ve had all your life. However, your provider also asks specific age-related questions about your routine, memory, and health, and conducts special age-related screenings that may include:
- Assessing for cognitive impairment
- Evaluating risk factors for mood disorders
- Checking your functional ability and safety (fall risk)
- Issuing vision and hearing screenings
Your Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours provider may also provide health recommendations or referrals for any relevant health issues that come up during your visit.
Included screenings and test
Medicare covers many preventive screenings and tests. These screenings give your Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours a baseline reading of your health to help determine when you need more care.
Preventive screenings and tests covered by Medicare Part B include:
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening (for at-risk patients)
- Alcohol misuse screening and counseling
- Bone density test
- Cardiovascular disease screening
- Depression screening
- Diabetes screening
- Flu shots
- Hepatitis B shots (for at-risk patients)
- Hepatitis C screening test (for at-risk patients)
- HIV screening
- Colorectal cancer screening
- Lung cancer screening (for and current and some former smokers)
- Nutrition therapy services (for at-risk patients)
- Obesity screening and counseling (patients with a BMI of 30 or higher)
- Pap test and pelvic exam (including clinical breast exam)
- Pneumococcal shot
- PSA screening for prostate cancer
- Sexually transmitted infection screening and counseling
Medicare also covers smoking cessation counseling for current smokers.
Cost-shared preventive services
Some preventive screenings and services are partially covered by Medicare. That means you’ll pay something for these services, which may include the deductible, coinsurance, copay, or 20% of the cost of the screening. These include:
- Diabetes self-management training for at-risk patients
- Diagnostic mammogram (differs from routine screening)
- Digital rectal exam for prostate cancer (differs from PSA test)
- Glaucoma test for at-risk patients
If you have Medigap, it may cover some or all of these screenings.
Stay on top of your health by scheduling an appointment for your Medicare AWV or preventive screenings by calling or messaging the providers at Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours.