What You Need to Know About Your Annual Wellness Visit
Your Annual Wellness Visit should be the first visit you have with your doctor each year.
This visit gives you a great opportunity to discuss your overall health with your doctor and set health goals for the coming year. The Annual Wellness Visit is not a routine physical or a "sick" visit. It's a special kind of office visit, included at no additional cost to you when you see a doctor in your network. At this special visit you and your primary care doctor will talk about any health concerns you have and make a plan to keep you healthy in the coming year.
Also, keep in mind if it is your first year in Medicare, schedule your appointment for your Welcome to Medicare visit, which is also covered at no cost to you. This visit will help your doctor get a snapshot of your health and will help you in the years to come.
Why You Need It
Think of your Annual Wellness Visit as a one-on-one conversation between you and your doctor about your health. Unlike visits when you are sick, this is the time for your doctor to focus on you and your health as a whole. Your doctor will want to make sure you get any tests or screenings you need. These preventive services can help your doctor catch health problems earlier when they are easier to treat.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, less than half of adults over age 65 get all the preventive services they need. Preventive care is important, especially for older adults because it not only can help doctors treat you but also could help prevent some health conditions from developing.
How Much Does It Cost?
Your Annual Wellness Visit is provided at no cost to you as part of your Florida Blue Medicare health plan. However, if your doctor performs other services or orders lab tests for you, you may have to pay a copay for these services.
What Should You Expect?
During your Annual Wellness Visit, your doctor will check your height, weight and blood pressure. You may also have a simple eye test. You’ll also have a chance to talk about your medications, eating habits, exercise and general well-being. You and your doctor will work together to create a plan for helping you feel your best. This plan will include any other preventive services that may be important for you.
How Do I Make an Appointment?
If you haven’t had your Annual Wellness Visit yet this year, now is a great time. Call your doctor today to set up your visit. We are here to help, too. Here’s what we can do for you:
We can help you find a primary care doctor if you don’t have one. If you are a BlueMedicare HMO member, you must have a primary care doctor to coordinate your care. You don’t have to have one if you are in PPO plan. But having a primary care doctor can help you coordinate your care and look at the total picture of your health. It’s especially important if you see multiple specialists. Your primary care doctor will be the one person who has an eye on everything to do with your health.
- We can also help you schedule any appointments you need during a three-way call.
- If you have trouble leaving the house, we can send care to you. Florida Blue works with vendors who provide in-home assessments at no cost to you.
- We can also tell you about our HealthyBlue Days events where you can get screenings you need and learn more about our HealthyBlue Rewards program, if you are eligible.
Healthy Blue Rewards
Depending on your plan, you may be able to earn $30 in HealthyBlue Rewards for getting your Annual Wellness Visit. To learn more about HealthyBlue Rewards, please visit floridablue.com/healthybluerewards
You can only earn one reward for your Annual Wellness Visit each year. Your doctor will help you know when you should be screened. Your doctor will also help you decide which test is right for you. Complete your Annual Wellness Visit anytime between January 1, 2018, and December 31, 2018, to earn a reward.
Note: Plans eligible for HealthyBlue Rewards include BlueMedicare Choice (RPPO), BlueMedicare Select (PPO), BlueMedicare Complete (HMO SNP), BlueMedicare Classic (HMO), BlueMedicare Classic Plus (HMO) and BlueMedicare Premier (HMO).
BlueMedicare Preferred (HMO), BlueMedicare group retiree plan, BlueMedicare Supplement and BlueMedicare Rx (PDP) members are not eligible for HealthyBlue Rewards.
If you have a caregiver who helps you with your health, make sure to share this information with them.
If you are a caregiver for one of our Medicare members, give us a call. Let us help you help the person you care for.
We’re always focused on you. We hope these tools help empower you as you continue to provide care to a loved one.
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Filed under: Medicare News