At One Health, we care about your health and wellness. We are beginning a series of Health Campaigns which means we may be reaching out to you throughout the year for a variety reasons.
Our first Campaign is Medicare Annual Wellness beginning Monday, April 12th. If you or a loved one has Medicare, you may receive an automated phone call or email from us asking you to make an appointment. Medicare beneficiaries are eligible for an annual preventive visit once every 12 months at no cost.
Please contact us today and schedule your Medicare Annual Wellness visit or please contact us with any questions you may have.
As a Medicare Beneficiary, you may be aware of a specific Medicare benefit that encourages meeting and collaboration between you and your provider called the Annual Wellness Visit (AWV). Medicare believes this is so critical to your overall health that it covers 100% of the cost of this service.
Likewise, regardless of their age, many patients are interested in Physical Exams as a diagnostic approach to evaluate the current state of their overall health. What you may not realize is that while Medicare pays for any medically necessary visits, it DOES NOT pay for Physical Exams.
It’s tempting to think of any time you and your provider get together, on an annual basis, to evaluate your health as an Annual Wellness Visit (AWV). Nothing could be further from the truth, and there is a substantial cost difference to you between an AWV and a Comprehensive Physical.
With these terms being so similar, and the difference so severe, we developed the attached to help increase your understanding of this important Medicare Benefit. We hope this drives informed conversations between you and your provider.
Components of an Annual Wellness Visit
1. Health Risk Assessment
2. Medical and Family History
3. A list of current providers and suppliers
4. Measurements of
a. Body Mass Index (BMI)
b. Blood Pressure
c. Other measurements deemed appropriate
5. Detect any cognitive impairment
6. Review Risk Factors for Depression
7. Review Functional Ability and Level of Safety
8. A written screening schedule for the next 5-10 years
9. A list of risk factors and conditions as well as planned interventions
10. Furnish personalized health advice and appropriate referrals
11. At the beneficiary’s discretion Furnish Advanced Care Planning Services.
If your visit does not cover these important components it is likely NOT an AWV (and you will most likely be responsible for the bill).
One of the most important ways you can prepare for an AWV is by talking to your provider about these important distinctions. This will ensure you are both on the same page regarding your treatment as well as any financial responsibilities as a result. When you are ready for your annual visit be sure to bring the following:
A list of any prescriptions and over-the-counter medications you are taking, how often you take them, and why.
Your family health history to help your provider determine if you are at risk for specific diseases. Important examples of family health history may include:
1. Diseases in more than one close relative
2. Diseases that occur at an earlier age
3. Major medical conditions and causes of death
A list of any other doctors or specialists you may be seeing especially if this is a new provider or if you have non-traditional providers in your care team
Remember that if you have a physical exam instead, and you struggle with paying your medical bills, you may be eligible for our sliding-fee or (HSP) plan. Everyone is encouraged to apply, and help completing the application is available.